Woman charged with Kalamazoo fire, murder

Kalamazoo and Battle Creek
Melissa Morgan

A June 20, 2019 booking photo of Melissa Morgan. (Kalamazoo County Sheriff’s Office)

KALAMAZOO, Mich. (WOOD) — A woman previously named a person of interest in a Kalamazoo house fire and death now faces criminal charges.

Melissa Morgan appeared in court Friday, where she was arraigned on charges of murder and first-degree arson.

The fire happened Feb. 3 at a home on Wallace Avenue near E. Michigan Avenue. Responding firefighters knew someone may be in the house, but couldn’t get in due to hoarding issues and a collapsed roof.

Once the fire was out, the body of 31-year-old Zachariah Hayes was found inside.

Hayes was originally from Iron Mountain but moved to Kalamazoo several years ago to help his family with maintenance on their rental properties.

Morgan, 32, was arrested in February on outstanding warrants and again in April on drug charges, though she wasn’t charged then with murder.

Her next court hearing is scheduled for July 3.

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