Royal Oak Police Officer Resigns After Controversial Stop Of Black Man

Michael Pilcher stepped down on Friday.

WWJ News
August 27, 2019 - 4:54 pm

photo: WWJ/Charlie Langton

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ROYAL OAK, Mich. (WWJ) -- A Royal Oak police officer has resigned from his post amid controversy stemming from the stop of a black man on Aug. 13.

The incident came to light after a video posted to social media showed officers questioning 20-year-old Devin Myers outside of the Inn Season restaurant on Fourth Street after a woman called 911 to report that he was acting suspiciously. The woman reported that Myers was circling her vehicle, staring at her from across the street and possibly taking pictures of her and her son. 

During the incident the responding officer, Michael Pilcher, a rookie who had been with the department for about a year, asked Myers for his ID, something the officer had no legal right to do. Myers asked for a supervisor to come to the scene. Shortly after his arrival, the supervisor told Myers he was free to go, but Royal Oak Police Chief Corrigan O'Donohue said he "did not handle this situation in a manner I expect Royal Oak supervisors to conduct themselves."

O’Donohue says an investigation into Pilcher, who was still a probationary officer, has revealed a pattern of what he called "behavioral inconsistent with our expectations." He says the officer operated in a way that was "unacceptable to the department with people of all races."

After a meeting with the chief on Friday, Pilcher immediately handed in his resignation. O'Donohue says the supervisor that was at the scene has been disciplined.

Pilcher's resignation comes after public outcry and an investigation led by Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel's Civil Rights Division.

Two days after the incident, Royal Oak police officials met with Myers and apologized to him and released a public statement.