Michigan AG brings murder charge in decades-old missing person case, manslaughter charges in 2014 mall death
DETROIT, Mich. - Updates in two previous cases involving the death of one man in 2014 and the disappearance of an infant in 1982 have resulted in charges against multiple individuals.
Four security guards caught on camera arresting McKenzie Cochran at the Northland Mall in Southfield have been charged with involuntary manslaughter after the 25-year-old was pepper-sprayed, tackled to the ground, and pinned face-down. His death would later be attributed to compression asphyxiation.
Attorney General Dana Nessel said new evidence acquired by her office led to the charges, more than six years after the former Oakland County prosecutor declined to do so following an investigation by the Southfield Police Department.
"Our job is to do everything possible to bring justice to victims," said Oakland County Prosecutor Karen McDonald, who was not serving in her position at the time of Cochran's death. "It's been delayed justice, but I am so thankful it is finally here."
The security guards John Seiberling and Gaven King were arraigned Wednesday for involuntary manslaughter, while Aaron Maree and Lucius Hamilton are expected to appear before a judge later Thursday.
Attorneys Keefe Braxton and George Gostias, who are representing Seiberling and King respectively in the Northland Mall death of Cochran, believe the charges were a political ploy.
"There are people who do these things purposefully, but this was not that," Braxton said.
"There is a complete lack of evidence," said Gostias. "I would like to know one shred of evidence in their favor - that my client has done something wrong."
The former security guards who were arraigned earlier today are due back in court Oct. 28. Both were given $2,500 personal bonds.
The second case involved the disappearance of 9-month-old Olisa Williams, who was last seen by her mother before she was taken by Isiah Williams, a romantic partner of Denise Frazier-Daniel. According to Nessel, Isiah Williams, who has a long history of domestic violence, took Olisa following an altercation with Frazier-Daniel.
Isiah, who was not Olisa's biological father, had abused Frazier-Daniels after learning she was pregnant. "His abuse was followed by periods of regret," Nessel said.
The day that Olisa went missing, Isiah had demanded the child following a fight with Frazier-Daniel where he slapped her. She was never seen again and is presumed dead.
RELATED: Manslaughter charges in death of McKenzie Cochran at Northland Mall
The case was considered cold when an officer with the Ann Arbor Police Department began filling in holes where gaps in information were apparent. Efforts to establish Isiah as a violent and controlling domestic abuser continued until the case was referred to Nessel's office.
"We believe (Isiah) Williams killed baby Olissa as an act of control over Frazier-Daniel," she said
A court date for Isiah has yet to be established. He is currently in custody in Chicago. Nessel said he will be charged with one count of open murder.