Court documents reveal confession in deadly shooting of neighbor

Posted at 11:51 AM, Jan 04, 2018
and last updated 2018-01-04 11:51:57-05

CROCKERY TOWNSHIP, Mich. – Court documents obtained by FOX 17 show a man suspected of shooting and killing his neighbor the day after Christmas admitted to the crime.

Wendell Earl Popejoy, 63, (Photo – Ottawa Co. Sheriff’s Dept.)

Wendell Popejoy, 63, has been charged with open murder following the death of Sheila Bonge, 59.  Relatives of Bonge reported her missing on Christmas Day after last speaking with her around 2:00 p.m.

Authorities conducted searches on and near her property in the days that followed, finding her body in a wooded area near her home in the 14000 block of 104th Avenue.  The wooded area was on the property of Bonge’s neighbor, Wendell Popejoy, who was interviewed by police.

Investigating officers testified that Popejoy stated he had seen Bonge outside his home the day after Christmas snow blowing an easement driveway in front of his residence.  Popejoy told authorities that he made the decision when he saw her doing the work that he was going to kill her.

Popejoy told authorities he grabbed a gun from his home and went out to the easement driveway behind Bonge and shot her in the back of the head.  Popejoy says he then disposed of her body in the back of his residence.

Earlier in the investigation, authorities told FOX17 they’d responded to Popejoy’s residence in the past for disputes involving his neighbors.

Popejoy remains in police custody after being arraigned on felony murder charges in the case.