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Woman dead, man injured after possible domestic incident

WZZM-TV • Jul 24, 2018 at 10:02 AM

PORT SHELDON TWP. — A man shot and killed his wife, then shot himself at their West Olive-area home early Tuesday morning, police said.

The Ottawa County Sheriff's Office was called to the home on the 15000 block of Barry Street, between 152nd Avenue and 144th Avenue in Port Sheldon Township, at about 3:45 a.m. Authorities said it was a friend of the couple's 17-year-old son who called police. 

The friend wasn't on the property, but the couple's son was playing a video game with him over the internet when the son heard gunshots. The teen walked outside to see his father on the ground with injuries to his mouth and ran back to his video game to alert his friends.

Police initially thought it was a "swatting" incident, which is when someone places a fake emergency call from another location. But when police arrived at the scene, they found 55-year-old Michael Scott McNeal injured in the yard. They also found 53-year-old Sherrilee Suzzanne McNeal dead inside a trailer on the property.

Police believe Michael killed Sherrilee and then turned the gun on himself.

Sherrilee McNeal was pronounced dead at the scene. A forensic autopsy is scheduled for Wednesday at Blodgett Hospital in Grand Rapids, The Holland Sentinel reported.

Michael McNeal is still alive. Authorities said he is at a Grand Rapids hospital in critical but stable condition, and may likely survive.

Neighbors told police they heard heated arguments in the past.

"They were married, but there is some indication that they may have contemplated or started the proceedings for divorce," Capt. Mark Bennett of the Sheriff’s Office said Tuesday. "She had left the residence, we're told, but had recently returned to live in a trailer outside of the residence on that same property. So what happened last night to precipitate this issue is still what we'd like to know and still what we're striving to find out."

Michael Scott McNeal’s record includes an assault charge from decades ago. Charges for Tuesday's crime could be filed against him as early as Wednesday.

The couple's teenage son was not injured in this incident and is staying with friends.

The crime remains under investigation.

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