By Diane Madigan
Independent Court Reporter
Kenneth William Coskie, 74, will undergo a competency exam before facing charges of first-degree murder for the shooting death of Eric Williams, 44, in Van Buren Township.
Coskie is accused of using his 12-gauge shotgun to commit premeditated murder just before 8 p.m. April 9 near his home in the Michigan Avenue-Denton Road area.
Coskie’s preliminary exam had been set for April 23 before 34th District Court Judge Brian Oakley and more than a dozen friends and relatives of the victim and the accused killer were in the courtroom. A channel 7 TV cameraman also was in the courtroom to record the session.
But Coskie’s court-appointed, Legal Aid attorney Kim Michon said her client was in custody and she asked Judge Oakley to waive his appearance. The judge complied, so Coskie was not in the courtroom.
Also, Judge Oakley ordered a competency exam for Coskie and waived his Miranda statement, as requested by Michon.
Coskie was also charged with felony firearm and for being a habitual offender.
Another date for a preliminary exam will be set after completion of the competency exam to determine if there is probable cause to bind Coskie over to circuit court for trial.
Coskie is being held in the Wayne County Jail on $1 million bond.
The following local cases also were before Judge Oakley’s court on April 23.
Van Buren Township
Amber Lynn Pierce, 26, pled guilty to attempting to possess analogues. On March 7 Pierce was arrested on charges of possession of analogues and possession of a non-narcotic controlled substance. Pierce has no priors.
Robert Leroy Hurtt, 48, Stood with his attorney Volha Yermalenka and pled guilty to a misdemeanor charge of domestic violence. He said there had been an altercation between him and his wife on March 9 and he pushed her.
Hurtt could be sentenced to up to 93 days in jail. He will be sentenced later and is free on $1,000 personal recognizance bond. Hurtt, who is gainfully employed, said he had left the state and is currently living in a hotel in Livonia.
His wife spoke from the audience and asked that the no-contact provision of the bond be extended.
Judge Oakley gave him permission to be out of state May 23-26 for his brother’s surgery.
Scott Judon Martin, 44, stood with his attorney Laura Lambert for a pretrial exam on a charge of 4th degree child abuse. A jury trial has been scheduled for June 6.
Devonta Washington, who was scheduled for arraignment and a pretrial exam on domestic violence charges, did not show up for court. Judge Oakley issued a bench warrant for Washington’s arrest.
Dale Kenneth Phifer, 76, of Bog Road had his preliminary exam adjourned until April 30. Dale and his son Kirkwood, 24, were arrested on Nov. 13. Dale was arrested for delivering/manufacturing 5-45 kilos of marijuana with Kirkwood being charged with delivery and manufacturing of drugs. Kirkwood’s case was bound over to 3rd Circuit Court and he was to have a disposition conference on April 29.
In a plea agreement, Aaron Lee Kline, 19, pled guilty to larceny of items worth from $200 to $1,000. Kline was arrested April 8 for breaking and entering a vehicle, causing damage.
Judge Oakley noted Kline had another pending case on possession of marijuana and ordered a pre-sentence interview of him by the probation department.
By Diane Madigan