Two teenage girls reported missing after not returning home from their Cadillac Junior High School Friday were located Saturday night by Michigan Department of Natural Resources Conservation Officer Mike Hearn.
Trinity Machowski, 13, and Arrianna Schings, 14, were found with alleged abductor Christopher Wagenschutz, 34, of Cadillac early Saturday evening in Kalkaska County.
After initially being taken to the Cadillac Police Department, the girls have since been returned home to their families.
Police issued a “Be on the Lookout” bulletin Friday for Wagenschutz who was being sought for child abduction in the Cadillac area. It was reported Wagenschutz picked-up the two teens from the Cadillac Junior High School Friday afternoon.
The bulletin included a description of Wagenschultz, a vehicle license plate number and reported that Wagenschultz was suspected to be driving a red Subaru. The bulletin also reported that the suspect may have a firearm in his possession and was therefore considered dangerous.
Hearn was patrolling the Village of Kalkaska early Saturday evening. He had received the original “Be on the Lookout” information from Kalkaska County Central Dispatch and had also been told there was reason to believe the vehicle and suspect might be in the Kalkaska area.
At around 6:30 p.m. Saturday, Hearn saw a vehicle driving into the parking lot of St. Mary in the Woods, located at 438 County Road 612 in Kalkaska. The vehicle matched the description provided in the bulletin. Hearn followed the vehicle in his DNR patrol truck and confirmed the vehicle and license plate information.
With the confirmed identification of the vehicle, Hearn reported the location to Kalkaska County Central Dispatch. He followed the vehicle into the parking lot of the Northland Food Center, located at 2101 U.S. 131 and activated his emergency lights. The vehicle did not stop and continued to drive slowly through the parking lot.
Sgt. Eric Johnson of the Kalkaska County Sheriff’s Office was patrolling the area nearby and heard the radio communication from Hearn. Johnson went to Hearn’s location and was able to help Hearn stop the suspect vehicle.
As Hearn and Johnson exited their patrol vehicles, they ordered the driver to place his hands in the air. The two officers then removed the driver from the car, who was confirmed to be Wagenschutz, and placed him in custody without incident. Wagenschutz was armed with a firearm.
Johnson took Wagenschutz to the Kalkaska County Sheriff’s Office. Machowski and Schings were also removed from the vehicle and did not appear to be harmed. Hearn transported the girls to the sheriff’s office. All three persons were turned over to the Cadillac Police Department.
“Conservation officers live in the county they serve which helps them to be a stronger part of their communities,” said Gary Hagler, chief of the DNR’s Law Enforcement Division. “We are fortunate that CO Hearn was on patrol nearby and was able to quickly resolve this situation without any injuries.”
Hearn has served the DNR Law Enforcement Division since 2004 and works in Kalkaska County.
Michigan conservation officers are fully commissioned state peace officers who provide natural resources protection, ensure recreational safety and protect citizens by providing general law enforcement duties and lifesaving operations in the communities they serve.