Authorities: Single gunshot killed Mich. officer

Officer was killed while responding to a 911 call at a former auto executive's home

By Corey Williams
Associated Press

WEST BLOOMFIELD TOWNSHIP, Mich.  — Authorities say a police officer who was killed while responding to a 911 call at a former auto executive's home in a wealthy Detroit suburb died of a single gunshot wound to the head.

Officer Pat O'Rourke was killed Sunday night in West Bloomfield Township.

The Oakland County medical examiner's office released the 39-year-old O'Rourke's autopsy results Tuesday.

Authorities say 50-year-old Ricky Coley fired on police, killing O'Rourke and precipitating a 20-hour armed standoff that ended Monday with Coley dead in his bedroom.

Results from Coley's autopsy have yet to be released. Police have said it isn't clear if Coley committed suicide. Federal authorities had charged him with mishandling money intended for employee insurance.

A vigil for O'Rourke is planned for Tuesday night outside the West Bloomfield Township police station.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.

A recently divorced executive accused of mishandling employees' insurance funds fired on police at his home in a wealthy Detroit suburb, killing one officer and precipitating a 20-hour armed standoff that ended with the suspect dead in a weapons-strewn bedroom.

"It's been a very long night, a very long day," West Bloomfield Township Supervisor Michele Economou Ureste said Monday evening after the discovery of 50-year-old Ricky Coley's body.

Police had been surrounding Coley's home since Sunday night, when Officer Pat O'Rourke was shot to death while responding to a report of a possible suicide attempt or medical emergency at Coley's home.

Police used construction equipment to tear a hole in a second-floor wall of the home on Monday afternoon, then sent in a robot that found Coley's body on a bed surrounded by knives and other weapons, Ureste said.

It was not immediately clear if Coley had killed himself, said police Lt. Tim Diamond.

During the standoff, police and Coley exchanged hundreds of rounds of gunfire, Ureste said. About 15 families were evacuated from nearby homes.

Police sent a team about 10 p.m. Sunday after receiving a 911 call alerting them that Coley had tried to kill himself or needed medical attention, Diamond said. Officers called Coley's name as they climbed the stairs to the second floor and were met by gunshots, Diamond said.

O'Rourke, 39, was among four or five officers in that team. He was killed when shots were fired through a bedroom door and wall, police said.

Coley was alone in the house Monday afternoon and the Oakland County Sheriff's Department had tried "to persuade this guy into a peaceful resolution," Diamond said.

Records show Coley headed a private equity company, CNC Holdings.

The U.S. Labor Department recently filed a lawsuit accusing Coley of mishandling money that was supposed to cover employee insurance at a Bad Axe, Mich., trucking company, Translogic Auto Carriers, which has been controlled by CNC since 2008.

The lawsuit says Coley also transferred $342,000 from Translogic to himself or his affiliates. Creditors forced Translogic into bankruptcy court in 2010.

Diamond said relatives called 911 and fled Coley's home Sunday after hearing shots.

O'Rourke, a West Bloomfield officer for 12 years, was married and had four children. In a memo to fellow officers, Lt. Curt Lawson said a "scene can turn in unexpected ways," despite the best training and preparation.

A vigil for the officer is scheduled for 7:45 p.m. Tuesday, the township supervisor said. West Bloomfield is a high-income community of 65,000, about 15 miles northwest of Detroit.

Copyright 2012 Associated Press

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