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Names of 7 victims of Grand Rapids, Mich. shooting spree released

Roderick Shonte Dantzler WWMT

Rodrick Dantzler
Rodrick Dantzler, who allegedly killed himself after a shooting spree which left seven people dead, is seen over one of the crime scenes in Grand Rapids, Michigan, July 7, 2011.
CBS/AP

(CBS/WWMT/AP) GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. - Police have released the names of the seven victims in the shooting spree that began Thursday afternoon in Grand Rapids, Mich. 

Pictures: Grand Rapids, Mich. shooting spree

Among them are two ex-girlfriends and the daughter of shooter Rodrick Shonte Dantzler. Dantzler killed himself following a high speed chase and hostage situation after the rampage.

After a 911 call, officers found three victims at a home on Plainfield Avenue. Those victims have been identified as: Amanda Emkens, 27; Marisa Emkens, 11; and Kimberlee Emkens, who was Dantzler's ex-girlfriend.

An hour later, police discovered the other four victims across town in a ranch-style house on a cul-de-sac called Brynell Court. Those victims have been identified as: Jennifer Heeren, Dantzler's ex-girlfriend; Kamrie Dantzler, Dantzler's own 12-year-old daughter; and Thomas and Rebecca Heeren, Jennifer's mother and father.

While police were investigating the seven homicides, they received a report of a "road rage" shooting. Police say Dantzler, 34, had apparently shot at a man through the rear window of the vehicle he was driving. The man survived.

Police spotted Dantzler near downtown Grand Rapids. Dantzler raced down city streets while shooting at officers. One woman was stuck by a bullet in downtown Grand Rapids, but was not seriously injured. The chase then continued onto the highways, spanning I-196, US-131 and I-96, at times going the wrong way.

Dantzler eventually left the highways, driving down an embankment and into a neighborhood.

Dantzler entered a single-family home, firing several shots as he forced his way inside and took hostages he did not know. He held the three hostage for hours, negotiating with police at times, firing sporadically at officers and inside the house.

He was in the process of surrendering when he turned the gun on himself and shot himself in the head. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

A friend of Dantzler's tells CBS affiliate WWMT that this chain of events began with a fight with Dantzler had with his current girlfriend earlier in the day.

Dantzler apparently said he "would kill them all."

In 2010 Dantzler pleaded guilty to assault and battery and served about a year. In 2000 there was another guilty plea to assault. Back in 1997 he pleaded guilty to malicious destruction of property and was given probation and in 1992 he was charged as a juvenile for breaking and entering.

Complete coverage of the Grand Rapids shooting spree on Crimesider


  • Crimesider Staff

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