Commerce man arraigned on open murder charge in connection with wife's 'vicious' death

Mike Martindale
The Detroit News

Novi — A 63-year-old Commerce Township man was charged Thursday in the slaying of his wife whose body was found wrapped in plastic bags and rolled up inside a comforter on the bathroom floor of the couple's home. 

Vincent F. Vuichard, an automotive systems engineer, is charged with open murder in connection with the Monday death of Tatiana Vuichard. An autopsy conducted Tuesday determined she died of slash wounds to the neck and ruled the death a homicide. 

Vincent Vuichard

“This was a brutal, brutal murder,” said Oakland County Prosecutor Karen McDonald, who appeared for the arraignment before Novi 52-1 District Magistrate Robert Morad and asked Morad to deny bond.

“…He is a danger and this was a vicious murder,” McDonald argued. 

McDonald told Morad that Vuichard was allegedly “in the process of cleaning up and destroying evidence” when he was arrested Monday morning.

Oakland County Sheriff’s deputies made the grim discovery during a welfare check at the couple’s condominium on Chesapeake Circle in Commerce Township. The woman’s co-workers became concerned when she didn’t show up for her job as an administrative assistant with the Novi School District and someone had received a “suspicious text” which McDonald said “did not sound like her.”

Vuichard, prosecutors contend, was wearing a blood-stained shoe and had noticeable scratches to his face when he answered his door. When asked about the injuries he allegedly told deputies that he was "getting into it" the night before with his wife.

Prosecutors claim he then told deputies his wife was gone but gave them permission to look around the condo.

When deputies asked Vuichard what was in the rolled up comforter with bloody contents, he responded: “my wife," Detective Sgt. Shawn Werner told a magistrate during a brief Wednesday hearing in which authorities obtained a warrant. 

Vuichard was then handcuffed without incident, authorities added. 

Police, Werner said, also found garbage bags containing bloody clothing, towels and a shower curtain, a bleach bottle, gloves and cleaning supplies inside a Ford Escape parked inside the couple's garage. 

Vuichard attended the Thursday arraignment remotely from the Oakland County Jail. He told Morad he planned to retain his own attorney.

Vuichard’s defender Nancy Plasterer said he would stand mute to the charge and asked that a not guilty plea be entered on his behalf. Plasterer argued unsuccessfully for bond, saying besides a 1997 domestic violence incident, which ultimately was dismissed, Vuichard did not have a criminal history. 

Plasterer described Vuichard as a county resident of 40 years who did not pose a threat to anyone, and implied that he should be permitted to contact family.

McDonald told Morad she had talked to both of Vuichard’s adult children and they did not wish to have any contact with him. Morad advised Vuichard not to have any contact with potential witnesses that might be called at trial, including relatives.

Morad said a probable cause conference and preliminary examination would be set later in the day.

As Vuichard stood up to be led back to his jail cell, Plasterer gave him a parting: “Good luck Mr. Vuichard.”

(248) 338-0319