TRAVERSE CITY — A probe of a Traverse City woman’s shooting death hinges in part on whether police confirm her boyfriend’s claim that he was the intended target of the bullet that killed her.
Traverse City police on Tuesday evening found Monica June Anderson, 28, dead in her apartment at Three Mile Road and Aero Park Drive. Capt. Mike Ayling said a 33-year-old man — Anderson’s family identified him as Robert “Bobby Cal” Caldwell — told dispatchers it was an accidental shooting that occurred when he attempted to commit suicide.
Investigators are trying to pull together that night’s events and by late Wednesday afternoon hadn’t arrested the man, who also apparently shot himself in the hand and received treatment at Munson Medical Center.
“We haven’t even interviewed him. We’re hoping that’s going to happen today,” Ayling said Wednesday.
Authorities didn’t release the victim and suspect’s identities, but Sandy Anderson, of Peshawbestown in Leelanau County, confirmed her daughter was the victim and in a live-in relationship with Caldwell.
The victim’s family and friends struggled to understand her slaying. Anderson’s childhood friend, Monica L. Anderson, said the family began a three-day mourning vigil in a home near Suttons Bay.
“Everyone is in disbelief,” she said. “Why, why her? It doesn’t make sense.”
Officers were dispatched to the apartment at 10:24 p.m. and arrived to find the woman dead and the man with a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Ayling said he couldn’t comment on details.
Family and friends said the couple had a good relationship, but some neighbors spoke of witnessing public fights. Anderson’s daughter, 9, and son, 3, also lived in the apartment and are with her family. Caldwell is the boy’s father.
Apartment resident Taneya Lamson described Anderson as a “very sweet lady” whose children were playmates with her daughter. She said Anderson’s relationship with Caldwell often appeared volatile.