Workplace shooting caused by racial bullying: Family

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A Clinton Township business owner was killed and another man wounded in a workplace shooting Tuesday.

The double shooting happened at 8:45 a.m. at Reliable Fence Company on Groesbeck just north of 15 Mile in Clinton Township. The suspect, 24-year-old Jerry Motley is in custody. 

"This appeared to be a workplace violence incident."

Sources say Motley was having an ongoing dispute with 34-year-old co-employee Angelo.  This morning Motley brought a gun to work and shot Angelo twice in the back. Co-workers tried to wrestle the gun away when it discharged and hit the owner in the head killing 61-year-old, Tom Badke.

"Tom was a very nice guy, he was very calm and hard-working. He had been here 25 years," said friend Don Caramagno.

But after the shooting Motley got in his car, drove South on Groesbeck and then smashed into a car on Kelly. He got out on foot and ran until he was captured by Fraser police.

"The person that was shot twice was apparently very aggressive to the other employees, and I guess for lack of a better word a bully," said Clinton Township Police Chief Fred Posavetz.

That would be Angelo -and the one person he bullied, according to his brother, was the shooter.

Motley's brother says that he was the only black person in the small fence company and that for months he said he was the subject of racial slurs.

"It's bullying, it's torturing," said Lamarcus Batts, his brother. "The manager came up shaking a watermelon saying black people would do anything for watermelon."

And the harassment escalated.

"In the last couple of weeks they've been taking his food, and throwing cigarette butts at them," Batts said.

And Motley posted the harassment on his Facebook page - " I cried in 2017 you can't talk to another human being like that" and "racist jokes are not funny." And "why do you ask me why black people are mad when their ancestors were sold into slavery."

Apparently Motley had no problem with workers at his other job.

"He was a really great dedicated hard worker," said Erika Fleming, his manager at Bar Louie. "I was in absolute sweetheart, he said hi to everybody, told everybody that we blessed day, he was hardworking and a sweetheart to everybody here."

Motley was on medication for mental health and was working two jobs. The forthcoming charges are likely going to be murder.