A student at Michigan's Saginaw Valley State University could face up to two years in jail because he chose to proceed with caution instead of immediately pulling over when prompted by police at 2 a.m. on a dark road in rural Michigan.
The police dash-cam video (below) shows the low-speed pursuit remaining at about 35 miles per hour and the eventual arrest.
DaJuawn Wallace was driving alone in Kochville Township in the early morning of Feb. 19 when he saw flashing police lights behind him. Wallace said he did not immediately stop because he was taught to pull into a well-lit and safe area.
“I live in Detroit, and I know some people who were robbed by fake police officers,” he told MLive.
Reports say the 24-year-old who is pursuing a master’s degree in health administration, continued to drive at a low speed with the police car in tow.
Wallace drove for about a mile and a half before coming to a stop in a Sam’s Club parking lot. When he stopped, he was arrested by Saginaw Valley State University Police Officer Leon Wilson and now faces a felony count on feeling and eluding police for not pulling over sooner. The charge carries a potential two-year jail sentence, reports The Huffington Post.
Wilson's report stated that he initiated the traffic stop because Wallace’s vehicle fit the description of a car he had witnessed driving on a sidewalk on the SVSU campus earlier.
“I feel that if I was an older individual it wouldn’t have been a problem,” Wallace said. “I feel like if I was of a different sex, they would’ve probably thought that I was just trying to find somewhere safe to pull into.”
After hearing Wallace’s reasoning, the prosecution offered to dismiss the felony charge in exchange for a misdemeanor charge with a delayed sentence. Wallace rejected the offer, but police say the deal is available for a reasonable amount of time.
Wallace said he is not interested in any deal short of dismissal.
“I feel like I didn’t do anything wrong,” Wallace said. “I feel as if it’s a way to get me on papers.”
Wallace’s preliminary examination was reset for July 9, reported MLive.
Photo Credit: MLive
Video Credit: MLive