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Kalamazoo murder suspect named by officers

Kalamazoo murder suspect named by officers

KALAMAZOO, Mich.—A 20-year-old man is now charged with the murder of a Kalamazoo man.

Public safety officers were called to the 1400 block of Race Street around 6:45 p.m. Friday, August 23.  When they arrived they found 43-year-old Lionel Lopez Jr. suffering from a single gunshot wound.  Lopez was taken to Bronson Hospital, where he died.

Officers located the suspect, 20-year-old Demarcus Cornellious Finley a short time later.   Sunday, he was formally charged with open murder, two counts of felony firearms, felon in possession of a firearm and possession with intent to deliver marijuana.

Finley is being held in the Kalamazoo County Jail with no bond.

Suspects sought after gunfire damages farm equipment

Suspects sought after gunfire damages farm equipment

KALAMAZOO COUNTY,  Mich.--   Kalamazoo County deputies are looking for the people who fired shots early Monday morning, damaging a farm irrigation system.

The gunfire was reported around 3:30 a.m. in the 7200 block of W. TU Avenue in Prairie-Rond Township.  No one was injured. When deputies arrived, the suspects were already gone.

Anyone with information in this case is asked to call the Kalamazoo County Sheriff’s Department at (269) 383-8748 or Silent Observer at (269) 343-2100.

Unconscious bicyclist found lying on roadway

Unconscious bicyclist found lying on roadway

SCHOOLCRAFT TOWNSHIP, Mich.—The Kalamazoo County Sheriff’s Office is trying to piece together the incident that seriously injured a bicyclist.

Witnesses found the 55-year-old bicyclist unconscious on the south side of VW Avenue, near Portage Road in Schoolcraft Township.  The rider was taken to Bronson Hospital where she’s listed in serious condition.  She was wearing a helmet.

Anyone with information in this case is asked to call the Kalamazoo County Sheriff’s Office at (269) 383-8748 or Silent Observer at (269) 343-2100.

Communities celebrate National Night Out August 6

Communities celebrate National Night Out August 6

National Night Out is August 6, providing community members a free and fun opportunity to meet neighbors and local police officers.

National Night Out started in1984 as a way to encourage the community to get involved in crime-prevention, sending a message to criminals that neighborhoods are organized and fighting back.  Organizers often fold food and family-friendly activities into the event.  This year’s participating communities include:

Kalamazoo County

·         Kalamazoo: Arcadia Neighborhood Assoc., Arcadia School, 6 p.m. - 8 p.m.

·         Kalamazoo: Eastside Neighborhood Assoc., Rockwell Park, 5 p.m. - 7 p.m.

·         Kalamazoo: Edison Neighborhood Assoc., 816 Washington, 5:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.

Embezzler who nearly put Village Market out of business punished

Embezzler who nearly put Village Market out of business punished

PORTAGE, Mich.—A former comptroller is heading to federal prison for stealing from his employer.

A judge Monday sentenced 42-year-old Christopher Earl Pratt of Portage to 87 months in prison.  The U.S. Attorney’s Office says Pratt abused his position as comptroller to steal from Village Market Food Centers, leading to the closure of at least three stories and 170 lay-offs.  Village Market nearly went out of business before discovering Pratt’s crimes, which took place over seven to eight years.  The U.S. Attorney’s Office says Pratt used the stolen money to buy and refurbish more than 40 muscle cars.  The FBI recovered many of the vehicles and turned them over to a receiver, who is trying to recover Village Market’s lost assets.

As part of his punishment, Pratt must pay more than $6.5 million in restitution.  He also faces three years’ probation when he’s released.

Police: July 4 shooting suspect considered armed and dangerous

Police: July 4 shooting suspect considered armed and dangerous

KALAMAZOO, Mich.—Kalamazoo Public Safety offices are asking for the public’s help in tracking down a suspected gunmen.

Okoli Dion Staggers, 21, is considered armed in dangerous.  He’s wanted on an eight-count warrant for a shooting that happened the night of July 4 in the 1000 block of Hays Park Street.  Around 9:15 that night, officers found a Kalamazoo man with a gunshot wound to his leg.  Detectives say the man was walking to his front porch when he was shot. The victim is recovering. Officers do not believe he was the intended target.

Staggers faces charges of assault with intent to murder and weapons violations.  He’s 5’4” tall, weighs 130 lbs. and may have a shaved head.  Anyone with information on his whereabouts is asked to call Kalamazoo Public Safety at 337-8994 or Silent Observer at 343-2100.

Two men wounded in holiday weekend shootings

Two men wounded in holiday weekend shootings

KALAMAZOO, Mich.—Kalamazoo Public Safety officers are seeking tips in two separate shootings.

Around 9:15 p.m. on Thursday, July 4, police were called to the 1000 block of Hays Park for a shots fired complaint.  Authorities found a 52-year-old Kalamazoo man with a gunshot wound to his leg.  The man was sitting on his porch when he was shot.  Police do not believe he was the intended target.  The man was treated at Bronson Hospital and released.

About three hours later, officers were called to a shooting near West Patterson and North Rose Street.  The victim, who had a gunshot wound to his chest, told officers he was walking in the area and did not see who shot him. The 21-year-old Kalamazoo man was taken to Bronson Hospital with non-life threatening injuries.

Anyone with information in either of these cases is asked to call Kalamazoo Public Safety at 337-8994 or Silent Observer at 343-2100.