Candidate for Washtenaw County 11th District commission seat criminally charged in April hit-and-run
The Republican candidate for the Washtenaw County Board of Commissioners seat in the 11th District has been charged in an April hit-and-run that injured a pedestrian in Ann Arbor, Washtenaw County court records show.
Joseph Andrew Baublis, 50, who is running uncontested in the Aug. 3 primary, is charged with leaving the scene of an accident resulting in serious injury.
Baublis is accused of hitting a 17-year-old Ann Arbor boy with his vehicle at the intersection of Packard Road and East Stadium Boulevard at about 5 p.m. April 19.
The teen was taken by ambulance to the University of Michigan Hospital, Ann Arbor police spokeswoman Lt. Renee Bush said. Bush said she didn't have details on his injuries.
Baublis, who learned Friday from AnnArbor.com that a warrant was issued for his arrest, declined to comment on the allegation. He remains interested in the county board seat, he said.
Bill Bigler, the treasurer for Baublis’ campaign, did not return a call seeking comment Friday.
Police are releasing few details about the accident. Officers responded to a report of a hit-and-run involving a pedestrian and obtained license plate information on the car from a witness, Bush said. While officers were searching for the car, Baublis approached an officer, police said.
It's unclear why Baublis left the scene, Bush said.
County election records show Baublis filed to run May 11, more than three weeks after the accident.
Baublis grew up in Ann Arbor and has lived in the city his entire life, according to a website advertising his handyman business. He spent many years rebuilding and remodeling older homes and is a ballroom dance instructor, the website says.
Mark Boonstra, chairman of the Washtenaw County Republican Party, did not return a phone call seeking comment Friday.
Four candidates are competing in the Aug. 3 Democratic primary for the seat. For the past 10 years, the seat has been held by Democrat Jeff Irwin, who is running for the 53rd District state House seat.
It's unclear when Baublis will be arraigned on the felony charge. If convicted, he faces up to five years in prison.
Lee Higgins covers crime and courts for AnnArbor.com. He can be reached by phone at (734) 623-2527 or e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.