Husband arraigned in fatal shooting of Eastpointe woman

By: Sara Kandel | Roseville - Eastpointe Eastsider | Published January 29, 2013

The husband of a local businesswoman who was found shot to death in their home Jan. 26 faces a murder charge. 

Christina Lazzana-Webster, the 33-year-old co-owner of Big Top Popcorn, was found dead in her home with a gunshot wound Jan. 26. Her husband, Anthony Webster, 45, is accused in her killing. According to the Macomb County Medical Examiner's Office, Lazzana-Webster was shot in the chest.

Webster was arraigned in 38th District Court in Eastpointe Jan. 29 on charges of second-degree murder and felony firearm. He stood mute to the charges. Attorney Randall P. Upshaw, who represented Webster during the arraignment, did not return contact attempts at press time.

Bond was set at $500,000 cash or surety. Following the arraignment, Webster was taken to Macomb County Jail, where he will be held unless bond is posted.

Webster has been in police custody as a person of interest, and later as a suspect, since early Sunday morning, less than a day after the incident took place.

“The husband came in with his attorney around 1 a.m. Sunday morning, and he’s been in custody the entire time since then,” said Eastpointe City Manager Steve Duchane.

Police were tipped off to the incident when an attorney, not necessarily Upshaw, phoned the station at approximately 2 p.m. Jan. 26 and said he had obtained information that someone may be in need of medical attention at the couple’s home in the 23000 block of David Ave.

“When officers arrived on the scene, the side door of the home was unlocked,” said Police Chief Scott Bourgeois. “The victim was dead when police arrived.”

A gun was discovered near the body when police arrived, but it is still being processed as evidence and officials could not say at press time if it was used in Lazzana-Webster’s death.

“We had gathered enough evidence to move forward and present charges to the Prosecutor’s Office; the first charges and the ability to hold him was based on probable cause,” Duchane said. “We linked enough evidence to him to move forward with charges, but the processing of evidence will continue right up to the preliminary exam. At the exam you have to lay all your evidence out.

“They spent a great deal of time there Saturday looking for evidence and processing the scene where the incident occurred, and they were able to collect a significant amount of evidence.”

Lazzana-Webster’s vehicle, a white 2000 Lexus RX 300 SUV, was missing from the scene when officers arrived. It was later discovered in Detroit Jan. 29.

“The husband certainly hasn’t said anything about it,” Duchane said. “He hasn’t said if he fled the scene in it and then realized he shouldn’t be driving around in it and parked it somewhere, and it could have been stolen from wherever it was parked, in a great irony of life.”

The incident is still being investigated; however, Bourgeois maintained that there is no reason for the community to worry.

“There is nothing that the community should worry about,” Bourgeois said. “This appears to be a domestic incident and there is no perceived threat to the community.”

It is unknown at this time if there were previous domestic violence calls from the household, but it appears to be an issue Lazzana-Webster supported. On Nov. 3, she hosted Hand Bags of Hope for a Domestic Violence Awareness Night at Big Top.

Lazzana-Webster leaves behind two children. William Pearl, 17, and Alana Lazzana, 9, are said to be in the care of relatives at this time. It is not believed that either child witnessed the incident.

“They are safe and with family,” Duchane said.

Webster is scheduled for a preliminary exam in front of Judge Carl Gerds of the 38th District Court in Eastpointe Feb. 5.

A public viewing for Lazzana-Webster is being held from 2-8 p.m. Feb. 1 at Butler Funeral Home, located at 12140 Morang Drive in Detroit.

Anyone with information regarding this incident is asked to contact the Eastpointe Police Department at (586) 445-5100.