A 30-year-old man is in the Calhoun County Jail awaiting arraignment after police say he used his three-year-old son as a shield, after a traffic stop on I-94.   The man then walked toward oncoming traffic with the child, and that’s when deputies used a Taser to stop him in his tracks.

It all started around 9 pm on Sunday, when deputies from the Calhoun County Sheriff’s Office got a call about a possible stolen vehicle that had fled from officers in Kalamazoo County and was headed east on I-94.  Deputies located the vehicle on I-94 near Verona Road near Marshall.   The vehicle was smoking heavily and appeared to have serious mechanical problems.

When a Deputy began to pull over the vehicle, it came to an abrupt stop nearly causing a traffic crash.  The driver got out and was argumentative with the deputy. That’s when police say the driver reached into the vehicle, grabbed his toddler, and began using him as a method of keeping deputies away from him.

Deputies tried to calm the man down, but he became more agitated and started to walk into oncoming traffic while still holding his child.   He made it across and into the median and was headed into traffic on the westbound side of I-94 with the child.   Fearing for the safety of the male and his child as well as the passing motorist, deputies stopped him with a Taser.  He was taken into custody without further incident and the child was rescued without harm.

On Monday, January 25th, Christopher Elijah Duffie of Taylor, Michigan, was formally arraigned on two counts of Resisting and Obstructing Arrest and a misdemeanor count of 4th-degree child abuse from the arrest. He was also sentenced to pay on fines from three previous bench warrants for failure to appear in court from 2018 and 2019. During the arraignment, it was noted that Duffie also has 27 other failure to appear warrants across several counties. He also was a parole absconder from Battle Creek in 2019, according to the Michigan Department of Corrections records.

Police found items in the vehicle that may link Duffie to recent larcenies. That investigation is still ongoing.  Officers in Kalamazoo County are also seeking charges for the initial incident that occurred within their county.

Duffie was placed on $10,000 cash or surety bond and not allowed to have contact with the child in the case and unsupervised contact with anyone under 16. He is expected to return to Calhoun County court February 1st.

The Sheriff’s Office was assisted by officers from the Marshall City Police Department and Marshall Firefighters ambulance.

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