Watch CBS News

Body Of Man, Woman Found In Aftermath Of Fire

DETROIT (WWJ) - Police say they have recovered the bodies of a man and a woman from a Detroit medical facility where shots were fired Tuesday shortly before the building was burned to the ground.

Police have not identified the bodies, but Antha Williams-Hill told The Associated Press earlier Tuesday that police were searching for her 35-year-old daughter, Sharita Williams.

Tuesday afternoon Detroit arson and crime scene unit investigators started sifting through the rubble of what used to be the Park Medical Plaza on Grand River and Virginia Park.

The body of a woman, suspected to be that of a medical assistant who had a troubled relationship with the facility's ex-maintenance man, was removed from the building hours after the fire began.

The missing woman's mother, Antha Williams-Hill, spoke with WWJ:

"Only thing I know is she was in a relationship with a man and she was trying to get out of it ... she got a personal protection order against him, she changed her address, she changed her phone number everything," said Williams-Hill.


Distraught and holding out hope that her daughter, Sharita Williams, the mother of four children, may still be alive. "I don't know if that is her or not - they say that they've got .... a body, a female body but I don't know so I've got to wait and go to the coroner's office because it was burnt ... in the fire," she said.

It is believed that the young woman was taken hostage by the ex-maintenance man, with whom she had had an affair and then broke off the relationship - both are thought to have perished in the fire that may have been ignited by the suspect.

"When you are dealing with mental illness or you are not aware that it is happening, but when you have people in a situation where it's not appropriate it can impact the lives of others ... rage, anger, revenge," said psychologist Dr. Kim Logan-Nowlin - a doctor who had a practice within the building.

Not only did the fire destroy the building-- but also the Joe Louis memorabilia collection of Dr. Stuart Kirschenbaum, Michigan's former boxing commissioner.

"Probably the best boxing collection of Joe Louis memorabilia in the United States if not the world," said Kirschenbaum.

The fire is believed to have been started by the building's ex-maintenance man. He has not yet been accounted for-- but police say he likely died in the blaze, although they have not identified either of the bodies found.

Read related story, here. 

(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.