91-Year-Old Shot, Set on Fire in Detroit

Suspect turned himself in on Tuesday
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 24, 2015 12:16 PM CST
91-Year-Old Shot, Set on Fire in Detroit
Police and and fire personnel were called to this home in Detroit at about 2:50 am Monday, Nov. 23, 2015, where they found a 91-year-old man dead following a fire.   (Holly Fournier/The Detroit News via AP)

A man has surrendered to police and been charged after a "heinous" murder in Detroit, though police aren't giving up details on the suspect's identity or motive, reports the Detroit Free Press. Authorities say 91-year-old Paul Monchnik was beaten, shot in the head, doused in gasoline, and set on fire early Monday in the midst of a home invasion. Officials responded to a house fire at 2:50am and found Monchnik's burnt body "covered with an accelerant, most likely gasoline," an official tells the Detroit News. He was lying on his back with his hands up and had been shot in the top of the head, investigators tell Fox 2. Authorities believe the gunshot killed Monchnik, though autopsy results are pending. Police initially raided the home next to Monchnik's in search of an unidentified suspect in his 20s, but the man wasn't there.

"We believe during the suspect's entry into this home, there was an attack," an official said Monday, per the Detroit Free Press. "However, in order for the suspect to cover his tracks, he decided to leave the location, obtain some gasoline, return, and set the victim and the home on fire." Police also released surveillance video showing the suspect driving the victim's vehicle to a gas station to buy gasoline. Monchnik's son says his father emigrated from Poland as a child and made a living fixing TVs. He was "nearly deaf," but was healthy, took no medications, and "cherished his independence," he says. "This is a heinous act beyond anything. This guy has to get caught and held accountable," he adds, per the New York Daily News. (More murder stories.)

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