Howell man charged with murder after dispute turns deadly inside tattoo shop

The wife of a Howell man says her husband was defending himself when shot and killed a 46-year-old who he had been feuding with over the past few weeks.

The fatal shooting happened at a tattoo parlor in downtown Howell last Friday, where police found a man with a gunshot wound. 

Jeremy Heath, 48, was originally arraigned on gun charges on Monday before prosecutors amended them to a count of open murder. The judge also denied Heath bond.

"He wouldn't do that. He's a good man. He's a good daddy," said Joann Mitchell, Heath's wife. "And who attacks somebody who can't even walk? And who comes in here knowing that there's kids in here and trying to do that and threatens to kill everybody. Like who does that?"

There had been tension between Heath and the victim, identified as Sean Thompson, Mitchell said. 

Thompson had lived in the unit above the Metro Studios Inc. tattoo shop where the shooting happened. Prior to the deadly incident, the two parties had gotten into a fight.

But Mitchell said the victim had made her feel threatened.

"He was being a mad man leading up to the past two weeks - actually over a month now," she said.

Heath does have a criminal record, including an assault and battery conviction in Oakland County back in 2020.