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Defendant in Utash Beating Takes Plea Deal in Exchange for Testimony

Threats have reportedly been made against Bruce Wimbush Jr., 17, who accepted a plea deal in Wayne County Circuit Court Monday for his role in the vicious attack on Steven Utash.

One of five people charged in the April 2 attack on Clinton Township tree trimmer Steven Utash, 54, has taken a plea agreement.
One of five people charged in the April 2 attack on Clinton Township tree trimmer Steven Utash, 54, has taken a plea agreement.

Bruce Wimbush Jr., one of four suspects charged in the vicious April 2 beating of a Steven Utash after he stopped to assist a 10-year-old he’d accidentally hit with his pickup truck, has agreed to plead guilty to assault with intent to o do great bodily harm in exchange for testimony against three other defendants.

Wimbush, 17, acknowledged his part in the attack, which left Utash in a medically induced coma for about a week, WDIV, Channel 4, reports.

He said he and his friends were on their way home from school when they saw the accident. “I striked him once,” Wimbush said. “I hit him in the jaw.”

Also charged are Latrez Cummings, 19; James Davis, 24; Wonzey Saffold, 30; and a 16-year-old juvenile authorities say was the instigator in the attack.

Wimbush will be released from custody on a $20,000 recognizance bond and will wear an electronic monitoring device until his July 7 sentencing. He will also be eligible to participate in the Holmes Youthful Trainee Act, which will clear his record of the charge upon successful completion, The Detroit News reports.

Wayne County Circuit Judge James Callahan told Wimbush to come forward if any threats are made against him for taking the plea deal. Assistant Wayne County Prosecutor Lisa Lindsey told the judge that threats have already been made against Wimbush.

“The people, wherever they are threatening you, I hope that the prosecuting attorney's office sees fit to bring appropriate charges against them," the judge said.

Saffold and Cummings are set to go to trial on Aug. 18. Davis is set to go to trial on Aug. 25.

The Go Fund Me site established for donations to offset Utash’s medical bills has raised $188,239 by mid-morning Monday. The 54-year-old Clinton Township tree trimmer had no health-care insurance.
Racer Boy June 16, 2014 at 11:57 AM
$20,000 bond??? Are you joking? This guy will be dead inside of a week!!! Why are Judges such fools?
Robert June 16, 2014 at 06:22 PM
I'm surprised they didn't just give him a jaywalking ticket and move on to more important issues like the so-called gay beating at the gay pride march in Detroit. Now that's something we all need to be focused on!

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