Move-in weekend took an eventful turn Friday evening following a one- vehicle car crash.
Around 6:00 p.m. the University Police Department and Brookings Police blockaded the area around 8th Street and 16th Avenue following the crash. The car hit a tree and the driver fled the scene. The individual
involved is a suspect in a burglary and robbery that occurred earlier that afternoon.
An investigation of a burglary incident in Brookings County earlier in the day started in the Brookings County Sheriff’s office, but the one- car crash at 8th Street and 16th Avenue spurred the search by the Brookings Police Department. The vehicle involved had been reported stolen to BPD on Aug. 21, said Lieutenant Derrick Powers.
Assisted by the South Dakota Highway Patrol, police blockaded the area and advised that people were not in danger but should avoid the area. The area was blocked off because the police were utilizing a tracking dog to find where the suspect went on foot, and police did not want people on foot coming and going from the area during that time. Streets were blocked off to avoid traffic jams in the area and BDP didn’t want people wandering the area where the suspect fled the scene, Powers said.
Although the incident happened near Binnewies Hall, it occurred after 5 p.m. and did not affect most students since they were at one of the many welcome back activities being held for students said Jeff Hale, director of Residential Life. SDSU Residential Life assisted in rerouting foot traffic related to campus and asking them not to go south past Binnewies. According Hale, staff members, including Community Assistants, were working with Student Affairs officials and other administration to keep students moving in from going in the direction of the accident. Hale said that his staff was notified that the situation did not involve SDSU students and it was a coincidence that the car accident happened on a corner near campus. CAs from all residence halls were contacted about the incident and rotated who was positioned directing foot traffic away from the scene.
“Residential Life was there as support to officers,” Hale said.
Students were notified about the situation via email, once police could relay more information, and were advised not to go in the direction of the crash site. A short time after beginning the investigation, police received information as to who they were looking for and identified that the suspect was not in the area.
The car was removed from the scene, but police remained. About three hours after the crash, all roads were reopened and few police remained.
City of Brookings Chief of Police Jeff Miller notified SDSU that the suspect is in custody as of Friday evening. The suspect was located in Volga.
The suspect has been identified by Brookings County Sheriff’s Office as 20-year-old Michael Ramon of Brookings. Ramon is being held in the Brookings County Detention Center on charges of first degree robbery, first degree burglary, commission of felony while armed, aggravated assault, grand theft, intentional damage to property, and ingesting a toxic substance.