BIG RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — A man who allegedly killed his three children and wife before attempting to take his own life has been charged.
Mecosta County Prosecuting Attorney Amy Clapp announced Wednesday that 51-year-old Charles Gillard will be charged on 15 counts: Four counts of open murder, five counts of committing a felony with a firearm, three counts of child abuse in the first degree, two counts of child abuse in the first degree committed in front of another child and discharging a firearm in a building causing death.
Each of those charges carry a life sentence, except for the felony firearm charges, which each carry two-year sentences.
On May 27, Mecosta County Sheriff’s deputies responded to a home on 180th Avenue near Johnson Road in Austin Township for reports of shots fired. They found 6-year-old Katelynn Gillard, 4-year-old Ronald Gillard, 3-year-old Joshua Gillard and their mother, 40-year-old Dawn Gillard, dead at the scene.
They also found 51-year-old Charles Gillard with a gunshot wound to the head. The sheriff’s office confirmed that he was the father of the three children and the husband of Dawn Gillard. He was taken to the hospital and transferred to several others for treatment. He is still in the hospital at University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, due to be released in the next couple of weeks.
Clapp says she expects Charles Gillard to be arraigned within the next couple of weeks if the hospital says his condition is “good.”