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Mackinac Bridge Authority passes resolution to make trespassing a felony

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The Mackinac Bridge Authority Board unanimously passed a resolution last week to urge lawmakers to make trespassing on the bridge a felony.

Members passed the measure with the hope of deterring nefarious behavior.

If lawmakers in Lansing adopt the resolution into law, the Mackinac Bridge would be designated as “key facility” infrastructure.

Kim Nowack is president of the Authority. She says it recently failed to prosecute a trespasser after a judge ruled the bridge is not officially listed as a key facility.

“So that dropped that crime down to a misdemeanor from a felony.”

Nowack did not reveal the details of the case she was referring to.

But Cheboygan County Prosecutor, Melissa Goodrich, says a man accused of climbing the bridge for a photo shoot in 2020 recently had the charges filed against him dropped from a felony to a misdemeanor and was discharged after serving 30 days in jail.

If the Bridge were designated a “key facility,” trespassing would become a felony punishable by up to four years in prison and a $2,500 fine.

Rick joined WCMU as a general assignment reporter in March 2022.