Murder Suspect Named Following Deadly Hostage Standoff

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Mugshot from previous arrest. File

MECOSTA TOWNSHIP, Mich. – The man who was arrested following an 11-hour standoff near Big Rapids which ended in murder will be charged Friday afternoon.

According to Michigan State Police records, 27-year-old Duncan Eric Willis will be charged with felony homicide, sexual assault and weapons charges.  FOX 17 checked his criminal record.  It shows several convictions including the following: domestic violence in Oceana County, 2007; misdemeanor assaults in Lake County, 2007 and 2008; misdemeanor assault in Big Rapids, 2011; domestic violence second offense in Big Rapids, 2012.

During a news conference Friday morning, investigators said the incident began around 8:30 p.m. at a Rogers Heights home on Cramer Road, just south of Big Rapids. Police received a call saying that there were shots fired in the area. Deputies later learned that a man forced his way into the home, carrying a long gun.

When officials arrived to the home they discovered that the 27-year-old suspect was holding hostages in the home.

A 58-year-old woman was shot and killed at the scene while three children, two 7-year-old boys and a 10-month-old girl, and three women, ages 20-30 were inside the home.

The Michigan State Police became involved and a negotiator was called to the scene.

The man let the children and two of the women out just before 5 a.m. and then, at about 6:30 a.m. the last woman was released and the suspect was arrested.

The sheriff’s department said that the women were all molested during the standoff. Police say that the children were not hurt. No names are being released yet.

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