Oakland County Deputy chases, fights, arrests suspect who stole church donation box

The Oakland County Sheriff is recognizing a deputy who chased down and wrestled with a suspect wanted for stealing a donation box from a church - and he says the fight from suspects is getting worse by the day.

Sheriff Michael Bouchard says this is becoming more and more common.

"Almost every day, one of my deputies gets hurt in the line of duty, dusts himself off and gets back out there," Bouchard said. "I'm calling somebody - saying how you feeling? How's your arm? How's your leg?"

Typically, these injuries aren't requiring a hospital stay but are being handled within the department. In the past day, Bouchard had to make two of those calls; one of which was after a deputy received cuts and bruises from chasing down a suspected church thief.

"Had to wrestle and take into custody somebody who had stole from a house of worship - the donation box," Bouchard said. "He was cleared for duty - just bandage up and back out he went."

The suspect was unharmed in the scuffle and the deputy will be okay.

Meanwhile, at the jail, a deputy there had an unpleasant encounter with an inmate.

"(The inmate) spit in his eye - so we have to figure out if he has any contagious diseases," he said.

The sheriff says it's not the severity of the injuries in this case that should be alarming. Instead, it's the frequency with which they are happening. And he says it's a country-wide problem.

"60 to 80,000 police officers are assaulted every single year. So they are getting hurt doing it but they still go back and do it," Bouchard said.

He said deputies train for this every single month and they need to be ready for anything.

"We want them to walk up and treat you with great respect like you are their best friend knowing you might try and kill them," Bouchard said.