By Rosemary K. Otzman
The man sentenced to life in prison for killing Detroit Police Officer Jerry Philpot with an AK 27-like assault rifle in a gang-related shooting in Detroit in 1995 was found dead in his cell June 21.
Scott Lee Younes, now 37, was found lying face-down in his cell and medical personnel were unable to revive him. At last report the cause of death was unknown and his family had requested an autopsy.
On May 25, 1995, Detroit Police Officer Jerry Philpot, 28, was killed in the line of duty in Southwest Detroit. Younes, 18, a reputed member of the Latin Counts gang, was convicted of shooting him with an AK-47 assault rifle.
Officer Philpot had ties to the Belleville area and had worked part time as a police officer for Van Buren Township for a year and two months, in 1991-92, while he was laid off from the Detroit Police Department.
When he was called back from layoff he went back to his job in Detroit.
Officer Philpot was buried at Belleville’s Hillside Cemetery and a huge contingent of police mourners came to Belleville for the burial. It was called the biggest funeral ever in Belleville and involved more than 500 cars.
The procession on May 30, 1995 reached from Wayne Road on I-94 to the I-94 S. Service Drive and Denton Road as it headed toward Hillside Cemetery. Cars turned into the cemetery at 1 p.m., led by the Michigan State Police. At 1:03 p.m. the police radio crackled with condolences for the family from those officers on duty who were unable to attend the funeral.
Mourners’ cars that were unable to park in the cemetery parked three abreast on Denton Road.
Motorists reported a 20-minute wait after the brief service while police cars exited Denton Road onto Main Street, heading north over the bridge.
The late George Heifner covered the funeral for the Independent and took many pictures for the local story.
Officer Philpot was born in Dearborn and graduated from Henry Ford High School in 1984 and the Michigan Christian College in Rochester in 1986. He served in the Army for two years, then attended the police academy, joining the Detroit force in 1989.
He was survived by his wife Diane and their 7-month-old daughter, his mother, father, sister and brother.
On May 28, 1996, a jury convicted Younes of first-degree murder (life sentence), two charges of assault with intent to commit murder (20-40 years each), and one felony firearms weapons charge (2 years).
By Rosemary K. Otzman