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Brandon man kills Independence Twp. woman, self

September 07, 2011 - A 25-year-old man who had been living with a Brandon Township family for about a year stole a gun from their home and used it to kill an Independence Township woman and wound her husband before turning the gun on himself, ending his own life.

Oakland County Sheriff's Office detectives say Matthew Stephen Adair stole a .410 Derringer from a gun safe at the Brandon Township home sometime between midnight Sept. 1 and 9 p.m., Sept. 2. He knew the combination because he had a rifle stored in it. The theft was not discovered until after the killings took place.

OCSO Sgt. John Jacobson said Adair was infatuated with Kristen Hinze, 19, whom he had met about two months earlier at the Salvation Army in Oxford Township, where she was an employee. Adair was doing community service at the thrift store for a marijuana-related conviction. Hinze maintained a friendship with Adair, but had made clear she was not interested in a romantic relationship with him.

According to police reports, Hinze was out with friends for the evening of Sept. 2 and her parents, Lou Ann and Charles Hinze went to bed at about 11 p.m. in their home in the 4700 block of Whipple Lake Road in Independence Township, leaving the door unlocked for when their daughter returned home.

When Kristen Hinze arrived at approximately 2:30 a.m., Sept. 3, Adair was laying in wait in her room and began choking her. She screamed and her parents ran to help her. When her mother, Lou Ann Hinze, entered the room, Adair shot her in the neck and chest area. Charles Hinze was shot in the shoulder and ran to the basement to get his own gun and ammunition. Kristen Hinze hid in her parents' bedroom and called 9-1-1.

While Charles Hinze was in the basement retrieving his gun, Adair shot himself in the chest. He was pronounced dead at the scene. Lou Ann Hinze, 56, was pronounced deceased a short time later at Pontiac Osteopathic Hospital. Charles Hinze, 50, was treated and released from the hospital.

Jacobson said with the exception of the marijuana conviction, Adair had no prior criminal history. He said Adair told the Brandon Township family he lived with the day before the shootings that he was "depressed" and had "broken up with his girlfriend."

"He was obviously depressed, but he made no mention (of anything) that would have led somebody to believe that he was at this depth," Jacobson said. "This is a tragedy for two families."

Oxford Leader Editor C.J. Carnacchio contributed to this report.

Susan covers Brandon Township and Ortonville
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