Video leads police to suspect in Ferndale killing

By: Joshua Gordon | Woodward Talk | Published January 22, 2014


FERNDALE — Ferndale police have arrested a 37-year-old homeless man in connection with the killing of a 67-year-old man Jan. 12 at an apartment complex in Ferndale.

The suspect, William Goad, was arrested Jan. 15, police said, following an investigation that led police to security video allegedly showing Goad arriving and leaving the unidentified victim’s residence at Devon Square Apartments, 1225 Orchard St.

At about noon Jan. 14, Ferndale police responded to a request for a welfare check at Devon Square Apartments. When officers arrived, they discovered a man lying dead on the apartment floor.

The victim apparently had been stabbed in the chest, according to police.

From reviewing the video, police believe Goad and the victim entered the apartment together Jan. 12. Goad, police believe, then left the apartment alone and returned multiple occasions Jan. 12-14 to take the victim’s personal property.

“It does appear the victim was physically and mentally infirm; by that I mean he had some health issues and, mentally, he was slow,” Ferndale Police Lt. William Wilson said. “He was described by others as being a friendly individual who may have been a gullible type and would maybe take people in and be taken advantage of.”

Devon Square Apartments is part of the Michigan State Housing Development Authority and rents one-bedroom apartments to persons ages 62 or older, and two-bedroom apartments for families.

The victim’s vehicle, a Chevy Cobalt, was taken by Goad, police said, but was found on a side street in Detroit.

An investigation indicated that Goad was a homeless man who was known in Hazel Park, Ferndale and Royal Oak.

At around 4 p.m. Jan. 15, Ferndale patrol officers located and arrested Goad in the area of Eight Mile Road and Interstate 75.

“We did see (in the security video) the victim and suspect come and go together, and the suspect alone coming and leaving using the keys,” Wilson said. “The suspect, in this case, is a pretty heartless and violent individual, and we wanted to get him off the street.”

The investigation was completed with the involvement of multiple agencies, including the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office, the Detroit Police Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

On Jan. 17, Judge Charles Goedert arraigned Goad at the 43rd District Court in Ferndale on charges of open murder, unlawfully driving away a motor vehicle and larceny in a building. Goedert denied Goad bond.

Goad currently is on probation for breaking and entering a building with intent and attempting to steal a vehicle last June, according to Michigan Department of Corrections records.

Goad requested a court-appointed attorney but had not been assigned an attorney as of press time. His next court date is at 1 p.m. Jan. 23 at the 43rd District Court.