Kenneth Craig Moose

Man who fled police into river in Plainwell pleads to lesser charges

Daniel Pepper, Staff Writer

A man who jumped into the Kalamazoo River in Plainwell to escape police after strangling his girlfriend pleaded to lesser charges.

Kenneth Craig Moose, 28, of Kalamazoo was in Allegan County Circuit Court Thursday, Aug. 31, and entered a guilty plea to charges of attempted assault by strangulation and attempted assaulting/resisting/ obstructing police.

Moose said, “Me and my girlfriend go into an argument. She snatched my phone and I put her in a headlock and told her to give me my phone back.”

He admitted he’d choked her by doing that.

Moose admitted he hadn’t stopped when ordered to by a Plainwell police officer.

The lesser charges are a felony and misdemeanor, respectively. In addition to the reduced charges, assistant Allegan County prosecutor Rachel Keeley said her office had agreed not charge Moose a third habitual offender and not seek additional charges.

“There was some information about discussions between the victim and defendant,” Keeley said.

“There won’t be any witness intimidation charged.”

The crime happened about 11:45 a.m. May 10 when police were called to the 300 block of East Bridge Street in Plainwell. The victim told officers Moose was hiding upstairs and he leaped off a second-story balcony and ran along the river. Officers chased him on foot and Moose jumped into the river behind the Trestle Bridge complex and tried floating downstream.

Otsego Police Department officers and Allegan County Sheriff’s Office deputies joined the chase.

Moose ignored lines to him thrown by police, but eventually pulled himself out of the river on the north bank near First Avenue before he’d reached the US-131 bridge. Police said he wasn’t in shape to resist by that point and he was arrested and charged.

A sentencing hearing before Judge Margaret Zuzich Bakker was set for Monday, Oct. 30, at 9 a.m.

Contact Dan Pepper at or at (269) 673-5534.


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