Gym owner suing police in Grosse Pointe Woods over bank robbery arrest

The owner of a gym in Detroit is suing the Grosse Pointe Woods Public Safety Department after he was falsely arrested for robbing a bank. 

He was arrested back in 2018, but says his life has not been the same since - and that his name hasn't even been cleared yet and he's still considered a person of interest in the crime. 

"I've spent my entire life building my resume, my reputation, and it was all taken away from me because someone chose not to do their job," Mike Fox tells us. "If you make a mistake, own it and just admit it. That's what I teach the kids that I work with; I work with adults. If I make a mistake I own it and I get in front of it, and they're just refusing to do that."

In fact, that's what Fox was doing last April at Detroit Thrive on Marseille, a gym he co-owns. He was coaching a student at the time when SWAT from Grosse Pointe Woods Public Safety busted through the door with guns drawn and arrested him.

Fox says he later learned he was accused of robbing the Chemical Bank a mile away in Grosse Pointe Woods.

Someone told police the suspect seen in surveillance video looked like him, but his attorneys say you can see that is not the case.

Without any evidence, 48 hours later police released Fox  - but to this day his attorneys say authorities still call him a person of interest.

"I have made many requests for them to issue a declaration of innocence and our requests are not being met," says attorney Peter Alle.

Alle has filed a lawsuit on Fox's behalf claiming assault, battery, false imprisonment, defamation and false light in what they believe was a racially motivated arrest. 

"Mike is a special person who's spent his whole life building up his reputation that was taken in an instant, and we're doing everything we can to restore that because he deserves it," Alle says.

Therapy is helping Fox work through the trauma of what happened, but he says his livelihood is still being impacted. Many are still under the false impression he is responsible for the bank robbery and have avoided his business because of it.

Fox is suing now because he feels he has no other choice.

"One, it will vindicate me. This would not have happened to someone else. Someone else may not have the support that I in the community or from family and friends and it could be catastrophic," he says. "I just want my life back." 

The initial arrest was on a warrant for an unpaid parking ticket, so police could question him about the robbery. Fox paid that ticket but was still kept for 48 hours, despite the lack of evidence.