Michigan Rep. Jewell Jones shares what went through his mind during arrest that led to several charges

‘I might have had some poor judgement,’ Jones says

At age 21 he was a city council member, a deacon in his church and a college student.

DETROIT – At age 21 he was a city council member, a deacon in his church and a college student.

Jewell Jones then made history as the youngest state lawmaker when he was elected to the Michigan House of Representatives in 2016.

Now, Jones is facing a slew of charges stemming from a motor vehicle incident along I-96 in Livingston County.

He has been charged with resisting and obstructing a police officer, operating a vehicle while intoxicated, reckless driving and possessing a weapon while under the influence of alcohol.

A few months later, Jones was arrested again for violating his bond, at which point, he was allegedly in possession of a handcuff key. Police said he smuggled the key into jail by taping it to his foot.

The Inkster native is now out on bond and wearing a GPS tether. He is allowed to go to work in Lansing and go to his church in Detroit. Which is where Jones spoke with Local 4′s Kimberly Gill and shared his side of the story.

Kimberly Gill: I want to go back to that day in April. On the interstate, you’re driving and what went through your mind?

Jewell Jones: Well, I do want to clarify a few things, because I know it’s been a lot of embellish facts throughout this case in this trial. I wasn’t driving when all of this happened. It almost seems like when I was approached, the trooper wanted me to be a criminal or something like that. But he didn’t have any evidence for anything, so maybe he wanted me to be impolite. And I think that . . .

Kimberly Gill: But you were impolite.

Jewell Jones: Well, I think, you know. I was pulling from my perspective. I was kinda thinking that I was being polite, but I was also because of my experience in law enforcement because of my experience with the law. I’m aware of different things that you need to do on different things you don’t need to do. So, of course, like I said earlier, I might have had some poor judgement. But at the same time. I felt that I was well within in the law.

Kimberly Gill: Let me just stop you right there. When you say you’ve worked in law enforcement, you know what needs to be done, what doesn’t, you had to know that name dropping was something that you shouldn’t do.

Jewell Jones: The comments you’re referring to came much later and so I do believe because we’ve seen a lot of clips of the video, but when you look at the video in its entirety, you can tell that for probably the first seven, eight, nine, 10 minutes, I was really just talking and then I began pleading with them basically to work with me.

During the interaction with state police, Jones denies resisting arrest. He said his actions, and the name dropping, was an attempt to stop the officers from using excessive force.

Jones was arrested again in September for violating his bond. When he was taken into custody, officers allegedly found a handcuff key taped to the bottom of his foot.

Kimberly Gill: Okay, so that happens and maybe you now looking back hindsight 2020. You can see where maybe you did some things wrong, but you go on to do more bizarre things. Things that are uncharacteristic of a person that you told me you were growing up how you were raised. And the handcuff key. I just, why did you tape a handcuff on your foot?

Jewell Jones: So, I’m not sure about all that. I did see once I got out of jail. These interviews and what the sheriff said that happened but you know when I first got processed in and they didn’t find the handcuff key and then the handcuff key appeared.

Kimberly Gill: So, you’re saying you didn’t tape a handcuff key to your foot?

Jewell Jones: Well, I’m hoping that a lot of the facts come out during the case.

Kimberly Gill: Do you have any idea how many sessions and votes you’ve missed?

Jewell Jones: I heard, I believe one of the individuals on one of the channels had did a tally of those different things. So, while I might have been away, however, the team was still hard at work. So, I may have missed some votes.

Kimberly Gill: Almost 90.

Jewell Jones: 90 votes and those that we missed, I think one of the most important things out there that you can do as a state representative is constituency services. So, I think that the team held that down because, you know, we’ve had unemployment issues, other issues going on with the state. So while I believe the votes is important . . .

Kimberly Gill: Your constituents didn’t have any representation for almost 90 votes, what do you want to say to that?

Jewell Jones: I apologize to my constituents for not being there and not being present. Though I couldn’t sit there in that seat and cast my personal vote for my constituents, I don’t think that we can entirely throw out everything, because, we’re still working for them.

Jones is expected to be back in court on Thursday for a motion hearing.

The full video of Jewell Jones’ arrest is available to watch below. Viewer discretion is advised. There is profanity.

Full video of Jewell Jones’ arrest.

About the Authors:

You can watch Kimberly Gill weekdays anchoring Local 4 News at 5 p.m., 6 p.m. and 11 p.m. and streaming live at 10 p.m. on Local 4+. She's an award-winning journalist who finally called Detroit home in 2014. Kim has won Regional Emmy Awards, and was part of the team that won the National Edward R. Murrow Award for Best Newscast in 2022.

Kayla is a Web Producer for ClickOnDetroit. Before she joined the team in 2018 she worked at WILX in Lansing as a digital producer.