A Michigan news anchor was killed last week and his family was hospitalized following what police believe to be an attempted murder-suicide from a man known to the family.
Jim Matthews, who worked as the overnight anchor at Detroit radio station WWJ-AM for the past seven years, was murdered Friday night in what the Chesterfield Police Department called a “domestic situation.” Matthews was killed, his girlfriend and 5-year-old daughter were both hospitalized, and his 10-year-old son is in critical condition after apparently trying to fight off the attacker.
On Monday, the man believed to be responsible, 55-year-old Arthur Levan Williamson, was arraigned on one count of first-degree homicide, homicide felony murder, two counts of intent to murder, and three counts of unlawful imprisonment, Fox 2 Detroit reported. He pleaded not guilty through his attorney.
Ashley Quigley, the sister of Matthews’ girlfriend Nicole Guertin, started a GoFundMe page to raise money for the family. On Monday, she posted an update to say her sister and niece are in stable condition. Her nephew has had more difficulty and was “forced to undergo brain surgery and ear surgery” over the weekend.
“Thankfully, his surgery was very successful, and after some tests and scans, his neck was deemed okay. He was able to take off his C-Collar which helped make the swelling in his face go down. He is still sedated while he heals, but he can move both sides of his body,” Quigley wrote on Monday.
Police received a call Friday afternoon from Guertin, who said she had been violently attacked in her home and that she and her daughter had “escaped.” Matthews’ brother, Joe Nicolai, told WXYZ-TV that Guertin had apparently been restrained before she could escape.
“Nicole, my brother’s girlfriend, was laying out in the parking lot and was duct-taped and bleeding so my wife went out to hold her hand,” Nicolai told the outlet. “It’s not even something you’d see in a horror movie.”
Williamson, the suspected attacker, reportedly knew the family and was a frequent visitor in their home, police told media outlets. He was found in the home’s basement with a self-inflicted wound and an apparent overdose, Law & Crime reported. It is still unclear just how he knew the family or his motive for allegedly attacking them.
“There is no motive, I don’t know why he was in the house. I talked to the lead investigator, and my brother probably came home to this. He comes home about 5:30 in the morning and was probably surprised and attacked,” Nicolai told WXYZ-TV. “I believe that [Matthews’ son] was trying to fight off this man that was attacking and trying to kill his father, and that’s how [the son] ended up injured and tied and put into a closet.”