Renewed Call For Tips In Potter Park Zoo Murder Case

LANSING (WWJ) – Police are renewing a call for tips in connection with the 2001 murder of Bernita White, a 41-year-old mother gunned down as she entered the Potter Park Zoo in Lansing with her 5-year old daughter.

Why a new plea for help in a nearly 12-year-old case?

Lansing Police Captain Kyle Green said investigators needed time to evaluate what they had. Now, they want to know what, if any, further information might be out there.

“We’re taking everything, and want to stress that,” Green told reporters at a news conference Wednesday. “No tip — no matter how small the person thinks it is, [is too small]. We want that information. We wanted everything.

(credit: Pat Sweeting/WWJ)

(credit: Pat Sweeting/WWJ)

“Technology has changed; people’s perspectives; memory has changed in people. So, we might get something different out there. This is an open investigation,” he said.

Police have declined comment on whether Bernita White’s husband, a Michigan State Police trooper, remains a suspect.

White had filed for divorce about a month before she was murdered.

Police said White and her daughter were at the zoo for a friend’s birthday party on June 23, 2001. The pair was walking from a pavilion toward the west entrance at around 3:15 p.m. when a bullet from a high-powered rifle pierced White’s heart.

It is not believed to have been a random shooting.

Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-SPEAK-UP.  As always, tipsters may remain anonymous. A $2,500 reward is being offered for tips leading to an arrest in this case.


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