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Detroit teen to stand trial in shooting of 2 officers responding to burglary call

Juwan Plummer says he thought police officers were robbers

DETROIT – A Detroit teen will stand trial for the shooting of two Detroit police officers who were responding to a burglary call on the city's west side.

Juwan Alexander Plummer, 19, claims he thought the police officers were robbers who have repeatedly targeted his home. He said he's the man of the house, and he wanted to protect it at 11:40 p.m. on Easter when someone was at his front door and he fired a shotgun.

A video played in court shows police arriving at the home. When they knocked, they announced who they were as a dog barked inside the home. That's when Plummer fired a shotgun through the front window.

Officer Tyler Simmons was grazed in the shoulder, but his partner, Matthew Windquist, was hit in the face.

The two officers had parked down the street from Plummer's house. His defense argued that he had no idea the people at his door were officers.

Judge Kenneth King agreed with the defense, but said it could have been a child at the door, or a family member. He said firing without looking isn't self defense.

UPDATE: Detroit police chief: 'We're optimistic' 2 officers will recover after being shot; man in custody

Plummer is charged with two counts of intentional discharge of a firearm in a building causing serious injury, two counts of intentional discharge of a firearm in a building causing injury and four counts of felony firearms violations.

One officer was hit with shrapnel in his left arm. 

The other officer was shot in his face by a shotgun and remains in critical condition. He has spent two years with the Detroit Police Department while the other has spent 18 months with the department. 

"This case is very unfortunate and could have been much worse," Wayne County prosecutor Kym Worthy said. "We simply cannot and will not ignore the alleged actions of the defendant in this case. The victims could well have been a neighbor, or a small child. The lives of these officers, who were doing their jobs, will never be the same and we must hold people accountable for their actions."

The arraignment

Plummer was arraigned Apirl 19. Tears ran down his face during the proceedings.

The prosecutor asked for a high cash bond saying that he is a danger to the community. The judge disagreed with her.

Wayne County prosecutors allege that Plummer fired a weapon from inside the house and didn't look out the window before shooting. Prosecutors also alleged that the officer's made identified themselves.

The judge asked if the police vehicle was visible from the house with emergency lights flashing. The prosecutor admitted that the vehicle was not in front of the home and the lights were off.

Bond was set at $25,000. The judge denied the prosecutor's request for house arrest and for a GPS tether.

Police: Man fired at officers from inside home

At about 11:45 p.m. on April 16 the officers went to a home in the 20000 block of Lesure Street for a burglary call. That's when they were shot by someone armed with a shotgun inside the home. 

Calls of a burglary at the home were first made Thursday, Craig said during a news conference Monday. More calls were made Sunday.

Inside the home was a mother, her 19-year-old son and a 14-year-old. 

When Detroit police officers arrived at the home about 11:45 p.m. Sunday, on an unrelated call, the 19-year-old apparently did not realize they were officers and not burglars approaching the home. He retrieved a shotgun and shot through a window, striking the officers after seeing flashlights. 

"Several calls of a burglary were made to the police department on this date," said Chief James Craig. "In fact, three calls were made. One of the individuals in the house, who we believe to be the 19-year-old male, fearing for the safety of his family fired from inside the house, armed with a shotgun, striking both officers."

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