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Murder & Manslaughter Archives

Police Officers and Self-Defense

According to the Washington Post, almost 900 people have been killed by police officers in the United States this year. These events are being subjected to increasing scrutiny by the public in light of recent controversial killings, such as those of Eric Garner and Laquan McDonald. Public discontent has continued to build as a result of questionable actions by police officers, as well as the response of police administrations.

Okemos man's murder trial began this week

The murder trial of a 19-year-old Okemos man began earlier this week in an Ingham County Circuit courtroom. He is charged with open murder in the February stabbing of his sister's boyfriend. The evidence has shown that a fight between the victim and his girlfriend (defendant's sister) is what set the tragic event in motion. The defendant and the victim exchanged increasingly heated text messages in the early morning hours the day of the stabbing. The conflict between the two men began when the defendant's sister told him the victim had assaulted and injured her over lost keys. That is when the victim and defendant began texting each other, insulting and challenging each other to a fight. Transcripts show the defendant asked the victim if he could show up at his apartment, and the victim tauntingly challenged him to do so.

Second murder trial begins in case of Lansing toddler's death

Trial began last week in the case of a Lansing man charged with open murder, first-degree child abuse, and torture in the death of his girlfriend's two-year-old son. The toddler died April of last year, at a local hospital, and police called his death suspicious. The young boy's mother and her boyfriend were arrested and charged in connection with his death. The two suspects both attempted to place the blame on the other one for the toddler's death.

Michigan grandmother sentenced for murdering grandson

We posted last month about a Michigan grandmother being tried for shooting and killing her 17-year-old grandson in her suburban Detroit home. The 75-year-old woman claimed self-defense, but the jury did not believe her and convicted her of second-degree murder. She was sentenced to a minimum of 22 years in prison-- 20 years minimum for second-degree murder and 2 years for a felony firearm charge that must be served consecutively. She will get credit for the 11 months she spent in jail prior to sentencing. Still, this will likely be a life sentence for the elderly woman. That is what her lawyer argued when he pleaded with the judge for leniency.

Okemos grad to claim self-defense

The 19-year-old Okemos man accused of stabbing his sister's boyfriend to death appeared at a bond hearing last week where his attorney indicated he will be asserting self-defense. Court documents show that the defendant went to the victim's Meridian Township apartment early on the morning of February 23 because of an argument between the victim and the defendant's older sister.

Man convicted of second-degree murder gets sentence reduced

Thirteenth Circuit Judge Thomas Power was recently told by the Michigan Court of Appeals in a 2-1 decision that he needed to adequately explain why he sentenced a now 19-year-old man to about twice what was called for under state sentencing guidelines. The judge sentenced the man to a minimum of 40 years in prison, despite state sentencing guidelines that called for a minimum sentence of between 13 and 22 years.

Lansing teenager faces multiple charges, including murder

In Michigan a teenager is not officially an adult until he or she turns 18 years old, as has been established by the Age of Majority Act. However in a court of law a teenager younger than 18 years old could be certified and tried as an adult. This makes a significant difference in not only the punishment that could be levied on a convicted teen, but also on some other aspects of the judicial process.

After 25 years, brothers released from prison thanks to Facebook

Two Michigan brothers have maintained their innocence through nearly 25 years of their life sentences. Now the men are free, thanks to a chance encounter on Facebook that brought forth new information in the killing of a Detroit drug dealer in 1987.

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