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Tag Archive | "Tom Stressman"

Year in Review: Veteran’s memorial stolen and then recovered


The Kent County  Sheriff Department found the stolen monument and arrested suspects in the crime within days of its disappearance. Photo courtesy of the Kent County Sheriff Department.

The Kent County Sheriff Department found the stolen monument and arrested suspects in the crime within days of its disappearance. Photo courtesy of the Kent County Sheriff Department.

By Judy Reed

The monument dedicated to the memory of fallen hero SPC. Timothy Brown was stolen in October from Veterans Park, and suspects in the case were arrested within days by the Kent County Sheriff Department.

The Brown family discovered the monument was missing Saturday, October 22, and called police. Thieves broke the statue, taking the helmet, rifle, and dog tags. Only the boots were left on the memorial stone. The family appealed to the public to have the suspects return the statue, no questions asked, but it did not appear.

The monument dedicated to SPC. Timothy Brown has been repaired and restored to its rightful place in Veterans Park. Post photo by J. Reed.

The monument dedicated to SPC. Timothy Brown has been repaired and restored to its rightful place in Veterans Park. Post photo by J. Reed.

Police suspected the same culprits took the statue as broke into concessions at Skinner Field just a day prior. They posted surveillance footage of the break-in, featuring three young males, and asked media to share the photos. Within days, suspects in the thefts were arrested.

Police found the statue in a shed on the property of Tracy Lyn Coleman, 45, in the 100 block of E. Muskegon, along with several items in the home from the Skinner Field break-in.

Police arrested David Edgar Sommerville, 17, Austin Lee Coleman, 20, and Justin Lynn Rossman, 27, all of Cedar Springs, on Thursday, October 27. All three were charged in the Skinner Field break-in, and Sommerville and Rossman were charged with the monument theft. The older Coleman was arrested the next day on receiving and concealing stolen property. He reportedly admitted to police that he knew the rifle and helmet were stored in his shed, and that he had told one of the defendants to get it out of there. Rossman reportedly told police that Sommerville stole the rifle and helmet and hid them in the storage shed.

“We are proud of the work of our investigators as they worked tirelessly to bring SPC Brown’s Monument back into safe hands,” said the Kent County Sheriff Department in an announcement on their Facebook page.

Once the statue was recovered, DPW Director Tom Stressman had it repaired by a business in Minnesota that specializes in bronze monuments and memorials honoring law enforcement, fire/rescue, and the military.

City Manager Mike Womack said it would cost the city about $500 to have the $10,000 monument repaired, and they would probably seek to recover that cost as part of restitution on the part of the suspects.

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Boil water advisories lifted


 

The City of Cedar Springs had its share of water problems last week with at least one leak and two water main breaks that forced the city to issue two separate boil water advisories. Each one occurred in areas of construction.

The first problem occurred early Wednesday morning, October 14 at Park and Ash Street. According to Al Kensil, with the Cedar Springs DPW, a fracture in a pipe caused a leak. Residents still had water, so there was no need for a boil water advisory. The construction crew had to turn off the water, however, about 7:30 a.m. to fix the leak.

The second problem occurred later on the same day at Red Flannel Acres. There was a water main break during construction, and residents had no water. A boil water advisory was issued about 1:45 p.m.

On Thursday evening, October 15, the crew was working at Park and Ann Street, when another water main break occurred, leaving residents at the east end of Ash Street and Meadowcreek apartments without water. The construction crew worked to fix the break, and Kensil explained that they decided to just continue the job and finish the rest of the work they needed to do, rather than returning at 4 a.m. They worked quite late into the evening to get the job done. One resident reported they were still working at 11:30 p.m.

Early Friday morning, DPW Director Tom Stressman called the Post and left a message that another boil water advisory had been issued for the prior night’s water main break.

The boil water advisory was lifted Saturday afternoon for Red Flannel Acres, and Sunday afternoon for Meadowcreek apartments and the residents at the east end of Ash Street.

Dean’s Excavating has been replacing the antiquated sewer lines, storm sewers and water mains. They have been working on the project around the city since late July.

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