Person of interest in Detroit double homicide turns himself in

Orlando Whitfield awaiting trial in 2018 Ypsilanti murder; Attorney says her client was nowhere near Detroit

Person of interest in Detroit double homicide turns himself in
Person of interest in Detroit double homicide turns himself in

DETROIT – The investigation into the double murder of Deandre Fizer III, 31, and his fiancée, Tonia Carter, 27, in northwest Detroit took a stunning turn as Interim Police Chief James White announced that Orlando Whitfield was considered a person of interest.

Whitfield is awaiting trial in the 2018 murder of Marissa Edmunds in Ypsilanti. He had been placed on house arrest until last Tuesday when he cut off his tether and fled.

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“He looked just as shocked as I was,” said Whitfield’s attorney, Ericka Julien.

Julien said she had been working to convince her client to turn himself in over the last week. When he arrived at the Washtenaw County Sheriff’s Office Tuesday, she said that’s when he found out about the other case.

“I was shocked to hear that he was a person of interest in a double homicide in Detroit. It’s my understanding in information that he’s been nowhere near Detroit this entire the time his tether was off,” Julien said.

Edmunds’ family is even more upset with the judge in the case -- Washtenaw County Trial Judge Carol Kuhnke -- for granting his initial conditional release 13 months ago.

“He’s on trial for murder o f a 25-year-old woman,” said Marissa’s sister, Amanda Edmunds. “What in your right mind would make you think he would get out and do the right thing?”

“Orlando did not shoot Marissa. Whatever we argue his role was or wasn’t, or his culpability was or wasn’t, he did not shoot anybody,” Julien said.

READ: Ypsilanti murder suspect flees after being released on bond


About the Author:

Jason anchors Local 4's 5:30 p.m. newscast. He joined WDIV in January 2015 as a general assignment reporter and has a Journalism degree from Michigan State University.