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A Detroit police officer accused of stealing from a truck while on duty last month is facing two felony charges.

Michael Merritt, 40, has been charged with larceny from a motor vehicle, punishable by up to five years in prison, and misconduct in office, also punishable by up to five years in prison, the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office said in a news release.

Prosecutors say Merritt took a hydraulic jack and tools from a truck parked in the lot of the Third Precinct on Sept. 19. He then allegedly loaded the stolen items into his personal vehicle.

Merritt, who has been suspended from his job without pay, appeared before 36th District Court Magistrate Dawn White this morning, and she entered a plea of not guilty in the case, court records show. Merritt was given a $25,000 personal bond.

A spokeswoman for the prosecutor’s office declined to say what prompted the investigation, which was conducted by the Detroit Police Department.

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A Detroit Police Department spokeswoman said she did not have any additional information on the case this morning.  

Merritt is scheduled to be back in court on Oct. 20 for a probable cause conference. His preliminary examination in the case, which determines if the case will proceed to trial, is scheduled for Oct. 25. 

Contact Elisha Anderson: eanderson@freepress.com or 313-222-5144

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