Grandfather stabbed to death in Utica park at grandchild's first birthday party

Victim asked man to stop doing drugs

UTICA, Mich. – A man is in custody on Saturday after a fatal stabbing that occurred at a birthday party in Utica.

ORIGINAL STORY: Man stabbed to death at grandchild's birthday party in Utica, police say

Hunter Perks witnessed what happened.

"I came over here -- I see a lot of commotion -- I see a lot of police officers," Perks said. "Three officers in one spot."

According to authorities, the victim was attending his grandchild's first birthday at Grant Park when he asked a man sitting on a park bench to stop doing drugs. The man stood up and stabbed the grandfather at least 15 times.

"I was freaking out. My heart dropped into my stomach," Perks said. "It shocked me. I was shaking."

There were multiple children playing in the park at the time. Perks described Grant Park as a family park and incidents like this typically do not occur.

The community and the family of the victim are shaken by the violence that claimed the victim's life. Family described him as a good person and a family man.

"Anytime you hear something like that, you wonder, 'Is it for real? Did it really happen to someone that I knew?' It really overwhelms you," a friend of the victim said. "I'm going to miss him."

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