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The detainment of a former Kalamazoo mayoral candidate is under investigation

The photo shows the deputy, in uniform and wearing a dark anti-Covid mask, seated at a desk behind what appears to be a plastic screen.
Courtesy photo
Ben Stanley detainment video

Ben Stanley, who ran for mayor of Kalamazoo last year, was detained for trespassing this week at the Kalamazoo County administration building.

The incident happened on Wednesday, according to the Kalamazoo County Sheriff’s Office. A brief video apparently shot by Stanley shows a deputy sitting at a desk in the administration building on Kalamazoo Avenue. After Stanley asks the deputy for his name and employee ID number, the deputy confronts him.

“Leave the building or I’ll arrest you,” the deputy can be heard saying.

“I just asked for your name,” Stanley says.

“You’re under arrest,” the deputy replies, as the camera begins to swing around.

Undersheriff Jim VanDyken said Stanley was later released, but could be charged with trespassing if the county prosecutor approves the charge.

VanDyken said he can’t comment on the details of the case until the Sheriff’s Office finishes reviewing the incident, along with a complaint filed by Stanley against Tim Randall, the deputy who detained him.

But VanDyken said Stanley’s video may not tell the whole story.

“It’s my understanding from the captain in his preliminary investigation that this event was much longer than that,” he said.

He added that people can be charged with trespassing, even in public buildings.

“You’re expected to come in, conduct your business and leave,” he said.

VanDyken said he expects the report on the incident Tuesday at the earliest.

Sehvilla Mann joined WMUK’s news team in January 2014 as a reporter on the local government and education beats. Before that she covered a variety of topics, including environmental issues, for Bloomington, Indiana NPR and PBS affiliates WFIU and WTIU. She’s also written and produced stories for the Pacifica Network and WYSO Public Radio in Yellow Springs, Ohio. Sehvilla holds a B.A. in French from Earlham College and an M.A. in journalism from Indiana University.
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