Man who died after being shot by police sought help for mental health issues before incident, family says

Michael Moza was a known schizophrenic

Suspect dies after being shot by police in southwest Detroit.

DETROIT – A man who died after being shot by police tried to get psychological help before the incident, his family said.

The victim, Michael Moza, was still wearing a wristband from the hospital when he was killed. Family members said he was a known schizophrenic and all he wanted was help.

“He told the Doctor if anything happens to me, it’s gonna be your fault,” said the victim’s sister, Priscilla Moza.

Moza feels that if her younger brother would have gotten the help he was seeking there’s a chance he could still be alive.

“He wasn’t no thug or no gang banger or no drug dealer. He’d help you and he would give you the shirt of his back,” said Moza.

Michael Moza was killed during the shooting that ended in a crash in southwest Detroit. The incident started on Tuesday morning when a two family home on Cabot Street was shot into.

“This residence was shot up 13 times,” Detroit police Chief James Craig said.

Craig said Michael Moza was a suspect in multiple shootings at that residence and was followed by police during the first incident. Police said they chased him for a bit after that incident before calling off the chase. After the chase he was taken to his job as a poll worker during the election, police said.

The man who dropped him off at work asked to remain anonymous. “He was working the polls,” the man said. “for the election.”

Police said Michael Moza started to have an outburst and get sick on the job. That’s when police took him to the Detroit Receiving Hospital Crisis Center where he was released a short time later.

The same person who dropped him off at work picked him up from the hospital.

“I don’t even think he worked the whole day,” he said.

The next morning Michael Moza was accused of firing five more shots into the home from the prior incident. That’s when another police pursuit happened that ended with an exchange of gunfire and a crash.

Michael is the third person with mental health issues to be shot and killed by police in recent months. Craig said it’s a reflection of a broken system.

“This person knew he was suffering. His sister knew he was suffering. I gotta tell you, when it’s gonna stop? Do we have to have another dead officer or another dead community member and frankly, some other folks need to be held accountable,” Craig said.

Local 4 reached out to the crisis center to see why Michael was released, but have not heard back.

Police said the only connection Michael Moza had to the home that he is accused of shooting into was that his mother used to live next door. Family members said there may have been other connections.

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About the Authors:

Victor Williams joined Local 4 News in October of 2019 after working for WOIO in Cleveland, OH, WLOX News in Biloxi, MS, and WBBJ in Jackson, TN. Victor developed a love for journalism after realizing he was a great speaker and writer at an early age.

Kayla is a Web Producer for ClickOnDetroit. Before she joined the team in 2018 she worked at WILX in Lansing as a digital producer.