DETROIT (WWJ) – The man accused of shooting and killing Detroit Police Sgt. Kenneth Steil refused to appear in court Tuesday morning, where he was set to be charged with murder .
Authorities say 21-year-old Marquise Cromer was so uncooperative and combative with officers that he avoided appearing for a scheduled probable cause hearing at Frank Murphy Hall of Justice. The case will move forward, however, and go on the record.
“We are trying to get him arraigned. He is having some behavioral problems so hopefully he will get arraigned tomorrow (Wednesday) morning,” Judge Deborah Langston told the court.
Cromer is facing amended charges of first-degree murder and murder of a peace officer after Sgt. Steil, a 17-year veteran of the department, died over the weekend.
Police say Steil, on Sept. 12, was chasing Cromer — a suspected carjacker — on foot outside a gas station on the city’s east side when Cromer fired at Steil with a sawed off shotgun.
Following the shooting, Police Chief James Craig said Steil was expected to be OK. The recovering sergeant was talking about returning to the force when he died suddenly from complications, reportedly a blood clot, shortly before he was supposed to be released from the hospital.
The 46-year-old is the first police officer to die in the line of duty in Detroit since Craig took over in 2013.
Cromer was previously charged with the following in connection with the incident: one count of assault with intent to murder; one count of resisting and obstructing police officer causing serious impairment; three counts of resisting and obstructing a police officer; one count of possession of a short-barreled shotgun, and felony firearm.
Cromer is also charged with assault, accused of shooting his father in foot (the day before he allegedly shot Steil) as the older man sat at the dining room table at their home on Dickerson, near Jefferson Ave., in Detroit. Prosecutors say he also threatened his stepmother at gunpoint.
Police have said Cromer suffers from depression and had not been taking his medication.
Steil, a member of the department’s underwater recovery team, leaves behind a wife and two children. Funeral services will be held Friday.