Prosecutor: ‘No evidence’ suspect planned Bruck’s death
Monroe — Authorities say there is no evidence to suggest a 27-year-old Newport man accused in the October 2014 death of Chelsea Bruck planned the alleged crime.
Daniel Allan Clay was arraigned Monday afternoon a second-degree murder charge and held without bond.
He raised his hand during the arraignment and said to the judge: “I don’t want a bond.”
The proceeding lasted for about 30 seconds before Clay was led away by deputies.
Clay is charged with second-degree degree murder because “there is no evidence whatsoever that (Bruck’s murder) was premeditated,” Chief Assistant Monroe County Prosecutor Michael Roehrig said.
But Roehrig added “it’s possible” more charges could be filed in the case.
Family members of Bruck were in the courtroom during Clay’s arraignment.
The 22-year-old Bruck was last spotted alive Oct. 26, 2014, at a Halloween party in Frenchtown Township dressed as Batman supervillain Poison Ivy. Her body was found April 24, 2015, about 12 miles away in a wooded lot on Briar Hill in Ash Township after five months of extensive searching.
According to Wayne County Medical Examiner spokesman Lloyd Jackson on Monday, Bruck’s manner of death was ruled a homicide and the cause of death was blunt-force trauma to the head.
Clay, meanwhile, has been previously charged with offenses ranging from theft involving a person in May to breaking and entering of a vehicle in 2008, according to Monroe County court documents. The court documents list those cases as closed.
He also owes more than $20,000 in back child support involving two sons, 6 and 4 1/2 years old, with two different women, according to court files.
Monroe County Sheriff Dale Malone announced on Friday that an arrest had been made in the 2014 Bruck case.
Surveillance was set up at the Clay’s home, and he was taken into custody at 2:55 p.m. Friday and interviewed.
“During that interview, detectives obtained details that only the killer could have known,” Malone said.
Clay is due back in court Thursday for a probable cause conference.