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Detroit police captain explains delay in notifying family of hit-and-run victim

Family learned of man’s death on social media 8 days after it happened

DETROIT – Detroit Police are shedding some light on why a family was never contacted when a man was killed during a hit-and run incident in December.

“All they had to do was come here and notify us. We know Christmas Eve may not have been a good time, but it would have been better than to wait eight days,” said Patricia Rutland.

Rutland’s son, Dion Emory, was killed in a hit-and run on Christmas Eve at the intersection of Schoolcraft and Greenfield roads. Her family had to put the pieces together on their own.

Detroit police Captain Derrick Maye said that should have never happened.

“We shouldn’t have an issue like that,” Maye said.

May said Emory didn’t have any ID on him, but police found his wallet nearby. Because of the extent of Emory’s injuries, officer’s couldn’t make the connection.

“They couldn’t distinguish if that was the person or not by viewing his ID. Their concern was a false identification,” Maye said.

Nevertheless, Maye said that someone should have taken the time to reach out regardless.

“There could have been another avenue of investigation that you could have conducted. You didn’t necessarily have to go there and make a death notification; officers could have went to the location and said ‘Hey, do you know this person,’” he said.

In the meantime, Capt. Maye wants to apologize to the family for the miscommunication.

“I just give my sincere apology, on behalf of my unit. My deepest apology,” Maye said.

Rutland said she’s going to file a citizen’s complaint.

The search also continues for the driver who struck and killed Emory. The car that hit him is believed to be a blue colored sedan, possibly a Ford Fusion.