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The Hillsdale County Prosecutor’s Office is inves­ti­gating the mental history of James A. Momenee, 47, who was shot and killed Feb. 12 before making any charges in relation to his death.
Momenee’s father-in-law, Edward Michael, told a Jackson Citizen Patriot news­paper reporter that he killed Momenee in self-defense, but no arrests have been made in con­nection with the shooting yet.
A “com­plete under­standing” of Momenee’s mental history and Michael’s self-defense claims are needed before moving forward, Hillsdale County Pros­e­cuting Attorney Neal Brady told the Col­legian.
“Self-defense claims are another element you have to con­sider before making charges,” Brady said. “You don’t charge somebody of a crime you don’t know you can convict them of.”
The Hillsdale County Sheriff’s department responded to a domestic dispute call made at 1:30 a.m. Feb. 12. Upon arriving at the location on Tripp Road in Ransom Township, police found Momenee dead.
“The facts aren’t in dispute,” Brady said. “We are still con­ducting an inves­ti­gation of the mental history of the deceased and the family history to have a good under­standing of what was going on in the minds of Edward and Angela most impor­tantly. Like, what was their fear level at the time and whether certain actions were war­ranted.”
Chief of the City of Hillsdale Police Department Scott Hephner told the Col­legian his department has responded to calls from the couple before.
“We’ve had to deal with them before,” Hephner said. “One time, I remember we were called in on a stalking issue between them. They’re a married couple, but they were having problems.”
According to Michigan criminal records, Michael has no criminal history, but Momenee was con­victed of crimes in 1987, 1989, and 2013.

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Macaela Bennett
Collegian editor-in-chief, Macaela J. Bennett grew up in the Pumpkin Capital of the World, Morton, Illinois. In May, she will join The Arizona Republic as a 2016 Pulliam Fellow, working at its News Desk reporting on Metro/Breaking News. In the past, she's interned for The East Peoria Times Courier, Campus Reform, The Town Crier, and The Tennessean. Outside of the newsroom, she enjoys playing soccer, hiking, running, and cheering on the Cubs.