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Man charged with Sand Lake arson

A Grand Rapids man was arrested last weekend for trying to start a fire in a vacant building in Sand Lake.

According to Sand Lake Police Chief Ken Williams, Sand Lake Police Officer Steve Brandow and Sand Lake Police Intern Zac Gregory were on foot patrol at approximately 3:00 a.m. Sunday, March 14, when they noticed a fire in the back window of a vacant building at 20 W. Lake Street. They observed a man leaving the scene, and Officer Brandow apprehended the suspect while Intern Gregory successfully extinguished the fire.

They arrested Gerald Lee Krug, 48, on a charge of Arson–Preparation to Burn Property over $20,000.

The building at 20 W. Lake Street is reportedly a historic building and is structurally connected to six other locally owned businesses in the downtown district. “The fire had the potential to lay waste to half of Sand Lake’s downtown business district,” said Chief Williams. “However, the keen observations and proactive patrols conducted by our officers undoubtedly prevented the heartbreaking loss of a cherished part of our community.”

Village President Kirk Thielke also had good things to say about the officers that prevented the fire. “As far as I’m concerned those officers are heroes” said Thielke. “It’s scary to think that if the village were disincorporated, as has been petioned, local police services such as regular foot patrols would no longer exist.”

Officer Steve Brandow is a three-year veteran of the Sand Lake Police Department.  Intern Zac Gregory is currently attending the police academy at Grand Rapids Community College; he is scheduled to graduate in October, 2010.

The building was the former home of Creekside Computers, and before that Sand Lake Veterinary Hospital. It may also have been a bank or savings and loan at one time.

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8 Responses to “Man charged with Sand Lake arson”

  1. Richard C. Bushnell of Sand Lake says:

    “were on foot patrol at approximately 3:00 a.m. Sunday, March 14, when they noticed a fire in the back window of a vacant building at 20 W. Lake Street.”

    Sure, I bet they where.

    “The building at 20 W. Lake Street is reportedly a historic building”

    Of course it is. Can’t just pick any old abandoned building.

    “Village President Kirk Thielke also had good things to say about the officers that prevented the fire. “As far as I’m concerned those officers are heroes” said Thielke. “It’s scary to think that if the village were disincorporated, as has been petioned, local police services such as regular foot patrols would no longer exist.”

    Am I supposed to take this seriously?

    This a desperate attempt. I know times are tough, and everyone is broke or close to it, but to play-act a crime scene is juvenile.

  2. Mark M. says:

    It think these officers did a wonderful job and should be commended. It is refreshing to see the media reporting a police success. It is usually quick to report when officers screw up, so I’m glad to read a positive story.

    Mr. Bushnell, you are certainly entitled to your opinion.. but I doubt you’d be so skeptical of this article if it were about police mishap. I’ve received several tickets myself and I was unhappy, but I’m glad officers are out in the middle of the night keeping me safe.

  3. jeanne says:

    Hurray- for the fantastic job by the Sand Lake Police Department,you are hero’s how devastating this could of had been if you were not there on foot patrol to catch this person red handed.. scary to think he would be out there maybe trying to burn other businesses or residents down… Sorry Mr. bushnell you can not appreciate the great job they have done.

    Thank you Sand Lake Police!!!!
    Thanks for the great artical Cedar Springs Post.

    m

  4. CMF says:

    Wow so I’m guessing your obvious lack of respect for the Police Department means you’ve probably had a few run-ins yourself and it’s everyone else’s fault but your own. I highly doubt the cops in Sand Lake have the time or will to make up some crime that was committed, they have much better things to do. Also, more than likely IF the town gets dis-incorporated (which it shouldn’t) then that’d mean if you need the cops, you’d have to call the ones from either Montcalm or more than likely Kent County. Do you know how long it takes to try and get a cop from over there to Sand Lake? It takes way to long because of how far away they are and their case load, so please tell me, would we have to call you to protect the townspeople? Will YOU be there when the town needs you? Yeah…didn’t think so.

  5. Charlie Towns says:

    I do not think that this was staged. The man has been charged with a serious crime. Are you sudgesting that he was a part of this Simply to stop an attempt to dispand the village? Why would someone put themselves in a position like that what would the motive have been? Who is going to go to jail for years for the sake of saving a village? I do not think that would make much sense.

    If it were not a legitiment threat dont you think that would have came out when they arrested him?

  6. Jackie M Russell of sand lake says:

    Here are the facts, Go to accesskent.com Then go to inmate look up, type in Krug and you will see that he was arrested and charged with arson. yea sounds pretty fake to me, NOT, I know I wold set myself up for a felony and go to prison for a long time just to save the village. Maybe it really happened, or we can listen to Mr Bushnell who by the way he is talking had to have been there. Maybe he had something to do with the fire.

  7. Sam M. of sand lake says:

    I love how there are people being rude to the police department. obviously the cedar post is jealous of something. the fire that was next to the post… they couldnt just write about that they had to specificaly state that their building was right next to the fire.. who cares! sand lake police department is need because there is no one else that goes through sand lake and look at all the trouble that they break up and stop. think before you speak!!!

  8. Citizen says:

    Wow, SAM. You are a real Class A moron. The Post didn’t say a damn word against the Police Department. Richard C. Pushnell – ditto. No one here is a journalist, eh? So why don’t you quit criticizing the newspaper? Because you obviously don’t know a thing about what it takes to run a newspaper.

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