Independent autopsy of Tara Grant complete

Tara Grant's remains released to her family

WASHINGTON TOWNSHIP, Mich. – Authorities said Thursday that an independent autopsy on the remains of Tara Grant is now complete.

Tara Grants remains have been released to her family, and they said they plan to bury her in Escanaba.

Investigators said they are now waiting for DNA evidence to come back, which they said they expect any day.

Macomb County Medical Examiner Dr. Daniel Spitz determined the cause of death to be strangulation.

"Once the DNA results come back the body will be able to go back to the family," Spitz said.

A second medical examiner looked at the body on Wednesday for the defense. His findings will be revealed at the trial.

"We offered him our facility and any assistance he needed," Spitz said.

On Wednesday, Local 4 obtained copies of search warrants that authorities used when they searched the Grant home, Stony Creek Metro Park and Grant family business.

Prosecutors, defense experts, and deputies searched the home of Stephen Grant, who police said is the confessed killer of his wife Tara Grant, again Tuesday, as well as Stony Creek Metro Park nearby.

A judge had signed into order that Grant's body and the crime scene will stay preserved for one week to allow investigators from both sides more time to look at the crime scene and Grant's remains, Local 4 reported.

It is the first time Prosecutor Eric Smith had a chance to look at the scene first hand.

Grant is accused of killing his wife Tara in February. Police said he allegedly killed her in the family home in Washington Township, dismembered the body at a tool and die shop in Mount Clemens, and then scattered body parts around Stony Creek Metro Park.

"When you go through the home and you see that people were living in there -- it even looks like people were living in there this morning," Smith said after being inside the Grant home. "It really drives home the magnitude of this case."

Police said were inside Stony Creek Park for about an hour on Tuesday. Investigators stopped at several trees that were marked with crime tape. These are places where Grant allegedly tried to bury his wife, police said.

Later Tuesday, police moved their investigation back to the Mt. Clemens tool and die shop, which is owned by Grant's father.

Grant's father and sister were there to let police in the shop.

The investigation will continue at the Macomb County morgue on Thursday to examine Tara Grant's body, police said.

On Monday, a judge denied the defense motion to have a gag order placed on any of the participants in the Tara Grant case, Local 4 reported.

The judge said that participants will be guided by professional conduct.

Defense attorney Stephen Rabaut requested a gag order in the case to stop people, witnesses, police and prosecutors from talking about the case unless inside a courtroom.

Macomb County Prosecutor Eric Smith said the people have a right to know and the proceedings should be entirely open.

A secondary emergency motion was held to preserve Grant's body as well as the crime scene.

Stay with Local 4 News and ClickOnDetroit.com for the most up-to-date information.

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