ANN ARBOR (WWJ/AP) – Music apparently moved an aspiring Grand Rapids area rapper to steal a school bus and rumble toward Motown to do some recording.
Josiah Curtis got as far as Washtenaw County on Thanksgiving, where his erratic driving on Interstate 94 drew the attention of other motorists who contacted authorities.
Police caught up to Curtis on eastbound I-94 near Ann Arbor and performed a traffic stop around 10 a.m. Sheriff’s Sgt. Geoffrey Fox said the 25-year-old Curtis told deputies “he was headed to Detroit to work on some music.” Officers discovered that Curtis didn’t have a driver’s license, or paperwork for the bus, which he allegedly claimed to own.
Further investigation revealed that the bus was taken from a locked, fenced-in lot in Wyoming, southwest of Grand Rapids.
Police told WOOD-TV that Curtis climbed the fence around 7:30 a.m. and found the keys for the buses in the vehicles. Police said Curtis crashed several buses into a loading dock and portions of the fence before he managed to drive one away from the scene.
Grand Rapids Police Sgt. Stan Lis told Mlive.com damages from the incident total more than $50,000.
Curtis is being held in the Washtenaw County Jail on charges of driving without a license and receiving and concealing stolen property — pending a Dec. 4 court date.
Police say Curtis likely will face additional charges in Kent County for malicious destruction of property and unlawfully driving away in a motor vehicle, according to Mlive.com.
Curtis’ parents say their son has a history of mental illness.
According to reports, Curtis has been in and out of psychiatric hospitals and clinics over the years, sometimes under court orders. He was being supervised and kept on medication at a Grand Rapids based organization that cares for the homeless and mentally ill until April of this year, when he allegedly petitioned the court for a change in guardian.
The organization reportedly challenged the petition, but ultimately lost the battle to keep Curtis under their care. Family members say since then, Curtis likely hasn’t been taking his medication.
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