FREMONT, Mich. (WOOD) - A man and woman in Newaygo County set up a murder scene to trick their friends -- and the prank worked a little too well.
Sheriff's deputies from Newaygo and Oceana counties and police from the Fremont and Hesperia police departments responded to a residence in the 9000 block of West 8th Street in Fremont on Tuesday after a report of a murder, according to a release from the Newaygo County Sheriff's Office.
A 911 caller had told police that he and another man had gone to the residence to visit the homeowner. Upon their arrival, he said, they found the homeowner lying face-down in the hallway with what appeared to be a gunshot wound to the back. A woman in the house was still in possession of a gun.
When police arrived on the scene, they found that no one was dead. Instead, the man and woman had simply played a prank.
"Holy moly, this is, like, way serious. Way more serious then I wanted to get into," the man who pretended to be dead, who asked not to be identified, told 24 Hour News 8.
Family was coming to town. He thought he could pull a fast one on the two men that would get a laugh.
"We thought we'd play a little joke on them -- little April Fool's joke, two days late."
He and his girlfriend put a little water in a bottle of ketchup.
"To thin it out. Make it look more like blood."
They snipped a few holes in a shirt and used mushrooms as fake flesh. But when the unsuspecting visitors showed up, things spiraled out of control quickly.
"When they saw me, they were gone," he said. "They headed for the door. ... We thought they were going to come back in. They didn't come back in. They left."
And, unexpectedly, the two men called 911.
But the pranksters had no idea that authorities were on the way and, much to their surprise, within minutes, law enforcement officers from four departments arrived on the scene.
When law enforcement arrived, they set up a perimeter around the house.
The pranksters wondered:
"Why would the police be here?"
Police ordered the pranksters out of the house.
"Told me to turn around, get my hands up, walk backwards, down on the ground."
Soon, the man who had appeared to be dead and his girlfriend exited the house and were taken into police custody. Eventually, they sorted it all out.
The pranksters wish their family would have given them a warning that the police were on the way.
"They could've at least told us they were thinking about calling the law." But he understands why they didn't. "They were scared. They still thought it was for real."
Now, the pranksters are embarrassed.
"I feel bad."
And they won't be playing any more pranks anytime soon.
"Wouldn't be nothing I'd try again. Not in the near future."
No one was arrested, but a report on the incident will be turned over to the Newaygo County Prosecutor's Office for review.
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