- Associated Press - Wednesday, May 18, 2016

MUSKEGON, Mich. (AP) - A western Michigan man charged with trying to abduct a girl is also being investigated in the disappearance of a gas station clerk and the fatal shooting of a jogger, a prosecutor said Wednesday.

Jeffrey Willis, 46, was charged with kidnapping and other crimes in an April incident involving a 16-year-old in Muskegon County’s Fruitland Township. She told investigators that she jumped out of Willis’ van.

Bond was set at $1 million Wednesday, and Willis asked for a lawyer. He declined to speak in court.

His Muskegon-area home was searched Tuesday and another property connected to relatives was searched Wednesday. Police could be seen removing computer equipment and other possessions.

In asking for a high bond, prosecutor D.J. Hilson told a judge that Willis is being investigated in two other cases, the 2013 disappearance of Jessica Heeringa at a gas station in Norton Shores and the 2014 homicide of Rebecca Bletsch in Dalton Township.

“Those leads are being taken very seriously,” Hilson said without elaborating.

Police found rope, handcuffs and syringes possibly filled with sedatives in Willis’ van, said the prosecutor, who called him an “extreme risk” to the public.

“This was a vehicle designed … to take sexual advantage of women,” Hilson said.


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