Parolee charged in ambush slaying of Detroit officer
Detroit — A 28-year-old parolee with a history of violent crimes was charged Tuesday with shooting Detroit police officer Rasheen McClain to death last month.
JuJuan Parks has been charged with 16 counts in connection with the Nov. 20 incident, Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy said during a news conference at her office.
"As the allegations surrounding the heartbreaking death of Officer McClain unfold, we continue to do what is necessary to bring his assailant to justice," she said. "There cannot be a rush to judgment. ... But I would like to caution everyone that this investigation is far-reaching and is not over."
Parks is charged with first-degree premeditated murder/first-degree murder of a police officer, three counts of assault with intent to murder, resisting and obstructing a police officer causing death, discharge of a weapon in a building causing death, discharge of a weapon in a building causing serious impairment, felon in possession of a firearm, and eights counts of felony firearm second offense.
"I speak for every man and woman on this department when I say we're happy this violent suspect has been charged," Detroit police Chief James Craig said.
The Wayne County Prosecutor's Office said in a news release Tuesday afternoon that Parks will be arraigned via video at 11 a.m. Thursday in 36th District Court.
Wayne County Prosecutor Kim Worthy announces charges against JuJuan Parks in the shooting death of Detroit police officer Rasheen McClain. The Detroit News
On Tuesday, the Michigan Department of Corrections website indicated Parks was being held at its Charles Egeler Reception and Guidance Center in Jackson for an "alleged parole violation."
The charges come three days before the 16-year department veteran is to be laid to rest and nearly two weeks after the shooting. The funeral for the slain officer is Friday at Greater Grace Temple in Detroit. Public viewings are set for Wednesday and Thursday at Fisher Funeral Home and Cremation Services in Redford Township.
McClain,46, and his partner, Phillippe Batoum-Bisse, were shot as they responded to a 911 call of a home invasion on Wyoming near Chippewa on Detroit's northwest side.
McClain led his partner and two other officers into the house after people told them a man armed with a rifle was hiding inside.
McClain, Batoum-Bisse and officers Danny Chambers and Joseph Weaver checked the top two floors of the house and were halfway down the basement stairs when they were fired upon with a Russian-made SKS semi-automatic carbine rifle, police said.
McClain was hit in the neck and Batoum-Bisse was hit in the ankle. Parks was wounded in the arm after Chambers and Weaver saw him running from the house and exchanged fire with him. Parks was arrested a block away and conveyed to a nearby hospital for treatment.
Craig said Batoum-Bisse was "in good spirits," even though he's had five surgeries, and, the chief said, he may be forced to undergo another surgery.
"The bone and tissue around his ankle were shattered," Craig said. "I saw him in the hospital the other day, and he told me he's eager to get back to work. He's been through a lot."
Worthy said the fatal shooting of McClain, who posthumously was promoted to sergeant, and the wounding of his partner is "heart-wrenching and very emotional for all of us," especially McClain's loved ones.
Police allege the parolee's obsession with a girl sparked a two-week shooting rampage.
In addition to killing McClain, the suspect is believed to be responsible for aNov. 18 shooting on Detroit’s east side, where two men were attacked as they sat inside a car in the vicinity of 3200 Harding, police said.
One of the men died and the other was injured. Parks has not been charged in that shooting.
The suspect has a history of violence, according to court records and Michigan Department of Corrections records. He was paroled March 21 on a conviction of assault with great bodily harm less than murder and felony firearms.
He was sentenced to a year and seven months in 2011 after a Wayne County jury found him guilty in an assault case. He received a two-year mandatory sentence on the felony firearms conviction.
Staff Writer George Hunter contributed.