Belleville police arrest 'dangerous' fugitive on the run from Michigan

Belleville News-DemocratAugust 9, 2013 

Belleville Police have arrested a man they describe as a "dangerous felon" who was wanted by authorities in Michigan.

According to police, Okoli D. Staggers Jr., 21, of Kalamazoo, Mich., was wanted on several felony charges including assault with intent to murder, five counts of possession of a firearm by a felon and discharge of a firearm from a vehicle.

Kalamazoo Police Department officers tracked Staggers to Indiana where he was able to elude them. Armed with information that Staggers might be headed to Belleville, Kalamazoo officers called their Belleville counterparts Monday with a warning that he might be at a residence in the city.

Belleville Police Capt. Don Sax said local authories got the call and moved in quickly.

"They contacted us and asked for assistance," Sax said. "They gathered the intel that led them to believe he was here. But how they got it, we don't know."

Kalamazoo police did not return calls seeking information about why they thought Staggers came to Bellevillle.

Police did not reveal the address where Staggers was taken into custody after a short standoff Thursday.

"Due to the violent nature of the charges against Staggers, the Belleville Police-St. Clair County Sheriff Special Response Team was notified and responded to the residence," according to a release from the Belleville Police Department. "After a short time, Staggers responded to instructions given over a public address system to exit the residence. Staggers complied with instructions, and exited the residence. Staggers was taken into custody without incident."

According to Kalamazoo police reports, Staggers was wanted for a July 4 shooting in which he shot a 52-year-old man in the leg as the man walked down a street. It was not revealed what led Kalamazoo officers to believe that Staggers would come to Belleville.

Staggers was transported to the St. Clair County Jail and will be held without bond pending extradition to Michigan.

Contact reporter Scott Wuerz at swuerz@bnd.com or call 239-2626.

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