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Calhoun County contemplating charges in BC woman’s death

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CALHOUN COUNTY, Mich. — Calhoun County prosecutor David Gilbert is considering which charges will be filed against a man who is accused of causing the death of his girlfriend in August.

Steve Harmon Jr. is accused of killing 55-year-old Denise Priestley. The autopsy results just came back showing that blows to her head contributed to her death. She died after Battle Creek police were called to the Chateau Village Apartments at 685 E. Michigan Ave. at 11:36 p.m. Aug. 14.

The investigation showed that Priestley had gone to a neighbor’s apartment and said she was assaulted by Harmon with the lid of a cooking pot or a cup. She died at the hospital but police said she had several serious medical problems.

Harmon was initially charged with assault until the results of the autopsy were received. Battle Creek Police Department det. sgt. Troy Gilleylen said he received the results Friday showing that the blows to the head were the cause of her death.

He said that information was forwarded to Gilbert.

Harmon has said he was attacked by Priestley, who had a knife, and he fought back in self-defense.

Harmon has already waived his preliminary examination on charges of assault with intent to commit murder and domestic violence. Gilbert said he expects the charges will be amended but declined to say what he has decided.

Harmon remains in jail with bond set at $400,000.

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