Novi — A 46-year-old Novi man is in custody in the brutal killing of his 84-year-old neighbor, who was choked and stabbed in the neck, authorities said Tuesday.
The victim’s daughter and son-in-law called 911 after they found the victim, a woman, unresponsive in her condo at 2:43 p.m. Monday in the 20900 block of W. Glen Haven Circle, in the CountryPlace complex near the intersection of Eight Mile and Meadowbrook.
Police found the woman dead and determined it was likely a homicide. In an autopsy conducted Tuesday, the Oakland County Medical Examiner’s office determined the woman was nearly strangled and suffered a stab wound in the neck. Her death was ruled a homicide.
Early Tuesday morning, police had executed a search warrant at a condo adjacent to the victim’s home, where they found items they believe belonged to her.
Police arrested the 46-year-old suspect after an officer at the scene saw him walking in the area and questioned him. The man made what the officer considered unusual comments, which raised suspicion. Police took the man into custody and learned he was on parole for a 2005 homicide conviction in Wayne County, Novi Public Safety Director David Molloy said.
“We believe that obviously there was an element of home invasion, of robbery. Unfortunately, we don’t know what led up to the homicide,” Molloy said. “Unfortunately, we’re still waiting for cooperation from our suspect, and we may never get that.”
The suspect lived with relatives in a condo next to the victim’s, Molloy said.
An investigator with the Oakland County Medical Examiner’s office would not disclose the woman’s identity midday Tuesday, saying police had not authorized release of her name.
The soonest police will release information on the victim’s identity is likely late Wednesday morning or afternoon, Molloy said. He also said investigators plan to present their case to the Prosecutor’s Office on Wednesday morning and hope to have the suspect arraigned on charges by Wednesday afternoon.
Molloy said the victim’s daughter and son-in-law found the victim’s body and notified authorities. Police say she lived alone, adding that not all of the units in the building where the victim lived were occupied.
The unit where the victim was discovered is inside a sprawling subdivision of townhouse-style condos; residents say its occupants are a mix of young families and seniors.
Barbara Horvath, 76, said she always felt safe living in the complex. After seeing police tape and officers trekking through a snowy field during their investigation Monday, she’s not so sure.
“It’s really scary,” said Horvath, who has lived in the subdivision for 23 years. “This really kind of opens your eyes here. It makes you think about what you want to do for your own protection.”
Anyone with information about the incident is asked to contact the Novi Police Department at (248) 348-7100 or anonymously by calling Crime Stoppers at 1-800-SPEAK UP.