PONTIAC (WWJ) – A Sterling Heights man accused of killing two men at trucking businesses in Taylor and Pontiac has been charged with murder.

griffin Sterling Heights Man Charged With Murder After Planned Killing Spree

Vernest Griffin (photo: Oakland County Sheriff’s Office)

Vernest Griffin, 45, was arraigned by a 50th District Court judge in his hospital bed on Monday, according to the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office. He was shot several times during a gun battle with Waterford police after crashing a truck during a chase down Dixie Highway last Thursday.

Just having allegedly shot Keith Allen Kitchen, 60, in Taylor, Griffin is accused of shooting 58-year-old manager Eriberto Perez at Aluminum Blanking in Pontiac.

Sheriff Mike Bouchard said Griffin knew exactly what he was doing, walking up to a sliding glass door that was open and shooting Perez in the back with an AK-47 as he sat at his desk.

Following the Pontiac shooting, police said Griffin headed to a third business, Assured Carriers in Waterford, where he sought but could not locate a third potential victim.

Investigators believe the victims were specifically targeted; Bouchard calling the shootings, “a planned killing spree.” [Read more about the case here].

In Pontiac, Griffin is charged with first degree premeditated murder, a life felony, as well as a felony firearms charge. Charges are spending in the Taylor case.

No motive for the shootings has been released.


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