Thursday, March 23, 2023

Pierson Township woman charged with machete murder attempt

Bond at half a million dollars for Destiny Switkovitz

Destiny Switkovitz, 29, of Pierson Township, left, was arraigned and charged on Friday before Montcalm County District Court Magistrate Brian Wagner, pictured on bench at right. Also pictured at right seated at a table is Montcalm County Chief Assistant Prosecutor Ryan Villet. — DN Photo | Elisabeth Waldon

STANTON — A Pierson Township woman is charged with using a machete in attempting to murder a man, who survived but is severely injured.

Destiny Linda Switkovitz, 29, was arraigned on Friday afternoon in Montcalm County District Court. She is charged with assault with intent to murder (a possible life in prison felony) and assault with intent to maim (a possible 10-year felony).

Destiny Switkovitz

According to the charges, Switkovitz used a machete to attack Patrick Herbert Stone on March 7 in Pierson Township, cutting or tearing off his ear and slitting or mutilating his nose and lips in the attempt. The Michigan State Police Lakeview Post responded to the scene.

Switkovitz, who appeared via video from the Montcalm County Jail, appeared calm on Friday as Magistrate Brian Wagner read aloud her charges and entered not guilty pleas on her behalf.

Montcalm County Chief Assistant Prosecutor Ryan Villet requested the court set a $250,000 bond for Switkovitz.

“This defendant has two prior what I would consider assaultive albeit misdemeanor cases, but a particular concern on this date, according to recorded statements, there was at least admitted drug use, followed by wielding of a machete, severely, severely injuring Patrick Stone who was in the home,” Villet said. “He was left very, very injured. The defendant’s two children were in the home at the time as well. It’s clearly a serious offense. I would be concerned about a danger to the public and to herself as well.”

Montcalm County Public Defense Administrator Matt Nave appeared in court on behalf of Switkovitz and clarified that while Switkovitz has one conviction from 2021, a second case was dismissed.

Nave requested “a much lower bond” and possible drug screening to deal with the prosecution’s drug concerns.

“She’s not a flight risk, she’s going to show back up to court when ordered,” the defense attorney said. “She’s presumed innocent.”

Wagner said while he’s not worried about Switkovitz not showing up for future court hearings, he is concerned about the seriousness of the charge, public safety and Switkovitz’s prior criminal conviction and her other “encounter with the court.” The magistrate set her bond at $500,000 cash or surety.

“The offenses that we have today, there aren’t too many more than are more serious before the court than today,” Wagner said.

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