Traverse City Record-Eagle

November 21, 2013

Police seek charges in shooting

BY MATT TROUTMAN mtroutman@record-eagle.com
Traverse City Record-Eagle

— TRAVERSE CITY — Police await the Grand Traverse County prosecutor’s decision on whether to file charges against a Traverse City man who claimed he accidentally shot his girlfriend in a failed bid to kill himself.

Authorities arrested Robert Lee-Allen Caldwell, 33, today on an unrelated warrant from Leelanau County, where he remains jailed awaiting a probation violation hearing.

Caldwell told dispatchers he accidentally shot his girlfriend Monica June Anderson, 28, in their Three Mile Road and Aero Park Drive apartment on Tuesday evening.

Traverse City Police Capt. Mike Ayling said detectives questioned Caldwell twice since then and he’s sticking to that story.

“They were pretty consistent with that,” Ayling said.

Investigators seek criminal charges against Caldwell, but Assistant Prosecutor Noelle Moeggenberg said the office hadn’t yet received files from police or made a decision as of this afternoon.

Caldwell briefly was jailed in Grand Traverse County before his transfer to Leelanau County for failing to show up for probation meetings after pleading guilty to a drunken-driving charge. An arraignment scheduled in Leelanau County for the probation violation was adjourned.

Caldwell suffered a self-inflicted gunshot wound to his hand on Tuesday evening and had surgery at Munson Medical Center. He was under 24-hour guard for the duration of his stay in the hospital until his release today.

Ayling said Anderson was shot once, but wouldn’t comment on specifics until a forensic autopsy report is released. He said Caldwell told detectives he didn’t have an argument or a struggle with Anderson before he fired the deadly shot.

Anderson’s daughter, 9, and 3-year-old son with Caldwell were in the apartment when the shooting occurred, Ayling said. The children now are with Anderson’s family.

A memorial fund seeks donations for Anderson’s children and funeral expenses. Members of the public who wish to donate may walk into Members Credit Union locations and make payments to the Monica June Anderson Memorial.

Anderson’s funeral service is scheduled for Saturday at 1 p.m. in the Strongheart Center in Peshawbestown. The Anderson family home on North Nish-Nah-Bah Mi-Kun in Peshawbestown will host a visitation Friday at 2 p.m.