Man alleges assault during apartment fire

Sunday Times Newspapers

RIVERVIEW — While the Police and Fire departments were at the scene of an active fire in the Pennbrooke Apartments Jan. 31, two men approached police officers to report a separate incident.

The men tried to make statements with police about 3:30 p.m. and had conflicting stories about an event that happened near Building 13 of the apartment complex. The first man told police the other man was trying to abduct two children from the complex while second man said he was assaulted by the first.

Police told the men to make their complaints at another time due to the fire in Building 2. The second man went into the station around 8 a.m. the next day to make a complaint against the first. He said he was outside Building 13 trying to pick up his children when the first man walked up to his vehicle and began hitting him through the open window of the vehicle.

The second man was unsure if he was struck with an open or closed hand, police said, but the alleged attack resulted in a cut lip. There were two witnesses — the victim’s girlfriend and the grandmother of the children — during the incident and the case was transferred to the Detective’s Bureau for a followup.

Police and Fire Chief Clifford Rosebohm said the apartment fire began about 15 minutes prior to the dispute between the men and affected three corner units on separate floors. The fire was extinguished within 15 minutes of the department’s arrival, Rosebohm said, and it was determined that the fire began in a first floor apartment and traveled up through the other apartments.

Three families were reportedly displaced due to damage from the fire and Rosebohm said the cause for the fire is still unknown. The Fire Department is conducting an investigation to determine the cause of the fire. Rosebohm said the department was assisted by the Wyandotte, Trenton, and Brownstown Township fire departments.

(Gabriel Goodwin can be reached at