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Published: Tuesday, 9/11/2012

Autopsy: Michigan man who barricaded self in house after killing officer committed suicide

ASSOCIATED PRESS

WEST BLOOMFIELD TOWNSHIP, Mich.  — A business executive who gunned down a police officer responding to a trouble call at his suburban Detroit house committed suicide, an autopsy found Tuesday.

Ricky Coley, 50, killed himself with a gunshot to the mouth, said Dr. Cheryl Loewe of the Oakland County medical examiner's office.

Authorities said Coley fired through a wall and door as police approached his room Sunday night, killing Officer Pat O'Rourke and precipitating a 20-hour armed standoff that ended Monday with Coley dead in a weapons-strewn bedroom.

The businessman, who was going through legal and marital turmoil, shot O'Rourke as officers responded to a report of a possible suicide attempt at his home in the affluent community of West Bloomfield Township.

About 15 families were evacuated from nearby homes during the standoff.

Coley and his wife had recently divorced and federal authorities filed a lawsuit accusing him of mishandling employees' insurance funds.

Coley worked at Ford Motor Co. and at General Motors, which employed him in its information technology section from 1996 to 2001, said GM spokesman Greg Martin.

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 Cole's private equity company CNC Holdings since 2008.

West Bloomfield Township police said they were also called to his home about a month ago because he was reportedly suicidal.

O'Rourke, a West Bloomfield officer for 12 years, was married and had four children. A vigil for O'Rourke is planned for Tuesday night outside the West Bloomfield Township police station. A funeral Mass is scheduled for Friday.



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