Former Bay City Public Service Director Michael Cecchini charged with assault and battery

Photo of Tereasa Nims

Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel announced Monday that former Bay City Public Service Director Michael Cecchini is being charged with misdemeanor assault and battery.

He will be arraigned Jan. 26 in 74th District Court.

“No one is above the law, and members of law enforcement should not expect special treatment when they abuse their authority,” Nessel said.

Nessel said Cecchini, 56, of Bay City, used his badge to confront three teenagers who were riding rented Bird Scooters in an apartment parking lot. Cecchini threatened the riders with physical violence and arrest before hitting one of the youths in his lower chest area with the butt of the flashlight he was carrying.  A verbal altercation between the two continued until police were called to the scene.

One of the teens recorded most of the incident on a personal cell phone. 

Cecchini was put on administrative leave after being accused of battering a man with a flashlight on Sept. 17 at Ninth Street in front of Rivers Edge in Bay City.

The Michigan State Police investigation of the incident was completed and given to the Bay County Prosecutor’s Office for review in September. 

A YouTube video of the incident shows Cecchini hitting a man with a flashlight while saying the man was disturbing the peace. In the video, Cecchini also threatened to beat the man’s "a—" and take him to jail.

Michael J. Cecchini

Michael J. Cecchini

Photo provided by City of Bay City

Cecchini announced his retirement on October 2, 2022. 

Caleb Rowell was named the new Bay City Department of Public Safety director.

In September, members of the Bay City Police Officers Association of Michigan, Bay City Command Officers Association of Michigan, and the International Association of Fire Fighters Local 116 stated in a news release that they condemn Cecchini’s recent actions.