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Mich. police: Finance exec killed self during standoff

(AP) WEST BLOOMFIELD TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) An autopsy has found that a business executive who gunned down a police officer responding to a trouble call at his suburban Detroit house committed suicide.

The Oakland County medical examiner's office said Tuesday that 50-year-old Ricky Coley killed himself. His body was found Monday night in a bedroom at his home in affluent West Bloomfield Township.

Dr. Cheryl Loewe says Coley shot himself in the mouth during the 20-hour standoff.

Authorities say the businessman, who was going through legal and marital turmoil, shot 39-year-old Officer Pat O'Rourke as officers responded Sunday to a report of a possible suicide attempt. Police eventually broke through a wall and found Coley's body.

Patrick O'Rourke of the West Bloomfield Township Police Department was gunned down while responding to a call Sunday night.
Patrick O'Rourke of the West Bloomfield Township Police Department was gunned down while responding to a call Sunday night. WWJ

Authorities found Coley's body about an hour after sending in demolition equipment to tear open the house on Monday. TV stations aired aerial video of construction equipment clawing away at the second floor. At least two armored vehicles were also in the upscale neighborhood, which was evacuated after O'Rourke was gunned down.

Before authorities sent in the big machine, Diamond said the sheriff's department was "trying to persuade this guy into a peaceful resolution."

Records show Coley headed a private equity firm, CNC Holdings.

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 CNC since 2008.

The lawsuit says Coley also transferred $342,000 from Translogic to himself or his affiliates. Creditors forced Translogic into bankruptcy court in 2010.

Michigan police say Rickey Coley, the chairman of financially troubled CNC Holdings, was already dead when they reached him.
Michigan police say Rickey Coley, the chairman of financially troubled CNC Holdings, was already dead when they reached him. LinkedIn

Diamond said relatives called 911 and fled Coley's home Sunday after hearing shots. He said the stress of Coley's divorce and financial problems likely were factors.

O'Rourke, a West Bloomfield officer for 12 years, was married and had four children. In a memo to fellow officers, Lt. Curt Lawson said a "scene can turn in unexpected ways," despite the best training and preparation.

CBS affiliate WWJ reports a vigil will be held for O'Rourke in front of the West Bloomfield Township Police Department Tuesday night.

"We are experiencing tremendous grief over the death of Officer O'Rourke," West Bloomfield Township Supervisor Michele Economou Ureste said in a statement, according to WWJ. "We are joining with members of the West Bloomfield Clergy Association to honor the memory of this hero who was lost to a senseless act of violence.

Officers closed roads in the area and evacuated at least 10 families from their homes.

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