Accused I-96 shootings suspect arraigned on new charges

Raulie Casteel accused of targeting motorists in four counties faces charges in Livingston County

DETROIT - A man suspected in a shooting spree that targeted motorists along the Interstate 96 corridor in four southeast Michigan counties faces fresh charges, including terrorism.

Raulie Casteel, 43, of Wixom, was arraigned via video Thursday afternoon in Livingston County's 53rd District Court in Howell. He pleaded not guilty to the charges against him.

Casteel waived his right to a hearing within 14 days on whether there's enough evidence to try him. Authorities are awaiting the results of a mental competency examination.

The charges were filed last week after Attorney General Bill Schuette announced he was taking over the cases at the request of prosecutors in Livingston, Ingham and Shiawassee counties.

Defense attorney Charles Groh says the charges are nothing new and are based on allegations already made by authorities in Livingston County.

The attorney general's charges replace the charges filed earlier in Livingston County.

Casteel still faces separate charges in Oakland County.

Casteel's bond was set at $2 million.

The shootings

The shootings began Oct. 16 and stretched from Oakland County west to Ingham County. The targets mostly were cars traveling on roads near Interstate 96. Only a handful of shootings actually occurred on the interstate. In all, 24 shootings were reported to police.

In one case, a 46-year-old Delton man was taken to the hospital for a gun shot wound in the left buttock area by a bullet that came through the driver's-side door while he was driving on I-96.

Watch: Raulie Casteel in court Thursday

The charges

Casteel has been charged and arraigned in Livingston County with six counts related to an alleged shooting incident on I-96 in Howell. The felony charges include: assault with a dangerous weapon, carrying a firearm with unlawful intent and discharging a firearm from a motor vehicle.

In Oakland County, Casteel is charged with 60 counts for incidents alleged to have occurred in that county.  Casteel has not yet been charged for alleged incidents that occurred in Ingham and Shiawassee Counties. 

The prosecution

The Michigan Attorney General's Office is taking over the prosecution for Livingston, Ingham and Shiawassee counties.

The Oakland County prosecutor's office will continue to handle the 60 counts Casteel faces in connection with shootings in Wixom and Commerce Township.

The attorney general's office says its criminal division will review evidence collected by a multi-jurisdictional task force and decide whether to bring charges related to shootings in Ingham and Shiawassee counties.

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