Press enter after choosing selection

Sniping Suspects face trail

Sniping Suspects face trail image
Parent Issue
Copyright Protected
Rights Held By
Donated by the Ann Arbor News. © The Ann Arbor News.
OCR Text

Sniping suspects face trial

By Chong W. Pyen


Two men accused of ambushing passing vehicles with rounds of rifle shots on M-14 one night five weeks ago were bound over to Washtenaw Circuit Court Monday after a judge heard taped confessions that the pair did the shootings " for kicks."

Judge Carl V. Fink of the 14th District court ordered Peter R. Meyer, 18, of 5879 Warren Rd. in Superior Township, and Gregory D. Sharp, 19, of Racine, Wis., arraigned on Oct. 20 on four counts of assault with intent to murder. The charge carries a maximum penalty of life imprisonment.

Police charge that the two men fired .22-caliber rifle shots at four trucks and passenger cars in the early morning hours of Aug. 31, with 20 bullets striking various parts of the vehicles. One trucker was hit on the hand, and other drivers testified about being hit by shattered glass. In all, police received calls that 200 Shots were fired at 15 vehicles along the M-14 stretch between Ann Arbor and the Wayne County line. 

DURING MONDAY’S pretrial hearing, Judge Fink heard Sharps's taped statement in which he said he was too drunk to remember any details of the shooting spree.

He said he only remembered going from one overpass to an other, shooting at headlights and he got “scared” and fled when he saw a big truck pull over. Meyer’s tape had also been played earlier, in which he said the shootings were "just for kicks."

Defense lawyers argued that the teenagers were too intoxicated and the charges should be reduced to simple felonious assault. They said if the pair had really meant to kill somebody, they would have had ample opportunities. But Assistant Prosecutor Randall Roberta said the two knew how to handle the weapon and pulled the trigger at the moving vehicles as if they were “ducks on the water.

Fink denied a motion for a lesser charge, saying that the two had confessed to the shootings, the number of shots indicated the act was purposeful and that there was probable cause that they may have committed the crime as charged.

FINK ALSO rejected a defense request that the taped statement not be admitted as evidence because of a possible coercive atmosphere at the time of the confession.

Both defendants are free on bond.