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Suspected drug overdose in Michigan evolves into murder charge

What authorities initially believed was a drug overdose turned out to be a shooting that led to a second-degree murder charge for a Michigan man. A 19-year-old man was charged after a series of events that began when emergency responders picked up his 18-year-old roommate, whom they thought was experiencing an overdose of synthetic marijuana. A friend had stopped by the men's residence and called 911 because he suspected a drug overdose. The 18-year-old died en route to the hospital in the ambulance, and it was presumed that the death was attributable to a drug overdose.

However, an autopsy that was performed the next morning showed that the man had died from internal bleeding due to a pellet gun wound to his back. The medical examiner contacted the Clinton County Sheriff's Office, which then obtained a search warrant in collaboration with local police. They confronted the suspect that evening, and he provided them with information that he had shot his roommate with a high-powered pellet gun, a detective from the sheriff's office said.

The pellet gun was located, the detective said, but it was not found at the men's apartment. He wouldn't say where the gun was located by police. The pellet was not found in the victim's body, the detective said.

Michigan residents who find themselves accused of violent crimes, including crimes involving weapons, are strongly advised to consult an attorney experienced in criminal defense. The presumption of "innocent until proven guilty" still applies to everyone, including those charged with violent crimes.

Source: Lansing State Journal, "Ovid man charged with killing roommate," Laura Misjak, Dec. 28, 2011

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