Tragedy in Marion

Arraignment in Marion convenience store murder expected today in Osceola County

OSCEOLA COUNTY — A Harrison man who killed two people on Wednesday in Marion is expected to be arraigned today in Osceola’s 77th District Court.

Michigan State Police say Blake Hullihen, 26, shot and killed Donald C. Feneis, 27, and Gabrielle Woodworth, 23, both of Sears, at about 6 p.m. on Wednesday outside Chuck’s Corners Citgo Convenience Store in Marion near the intersection of M-115 and M-66.

Hullihen fled the scene and met with his father, who is a friend of Clare County Sheriff John Wilson. Hullihen’s father then took him to Wilson home in Harrison, where he turned himself in. Hullihen was eventually taken into custody at the Osceola County Jail.

Michigan State Police Det. Sgt. George Pratt said police still are unsure of many details surrounding the shootings and are not ready to release others.

Pratt declined to comment on how many shots were fired or the type of gun that was used by Hullihen. He said he wasn’t sure if there had been previous violence between Hullihen and the victims, but did say Woodworth and Feneis lived together. The timeline between the shootings and Hullihen’s surrender also is yet to be determined, Pratt said.

The shootings were the culmination of an ongoing child custody dispute between Hullihen and Woodworth. The two were never married, Pratt said, but shared custody of a 6-year-old girl. The girl was not in the car at the time of the shooting, Pratt said.

“The child of Woodworth and the suspect was not anywhere near the scene,” he said. “I believe she’s being taken care of now by the Department of Human Services. She was with the relatives of Hullihen at the time (of the shooting.)”

According to court records obtained by the Pioneer from Clare County’s 55th Circuit Court, Hullihen and Woodworth attended a family court hearing on Nov. 22, during which Hullihen was attempting to gain more parenting time with his daughter.

An opinion filed Monday shows that Hullihen spent a large amount of parenting time with the girl this summer, during which time she suffered burns allegedly caused by cigarettes and riding an all-terrain vehicle. She also was returned to Woodworth with head lice and a litany of dental problems, which required the girl to undergo four root canals and receive several fillings. Because of the alleged neglect, the opinion stated it was in the best interest of the child to grant Woodworth full physical custody of the girl. Hullihen was granted visitation.

Other documents inside the file contained a statement from Hullihen claiming he had been threatened on the phone by both Feneis and one of Feneis’ relatives. Woodworth denied those claims in a seperate statement.

Osceola County Prosecutor Jim Sims declined to comment on the case on Thursday, saying he expects to release more details about the homicides on Friday.

“Until we get the official police report tomorrow, we can’t make any comments at this time,” he said.

As yellow crime scene tape was removed following the MSP’s initial investigation, Chuck’s Corners reopened for business as usual.

While hesitant to comment, store owner Jamie Kocur noted the shooting was a tragedy all around.

“It’s a sad situation,” he said shaking his head. “Families are hurting today. I just feel so bad for everyone.”

Michigan State Police troopers are investigating the homicides. Troopers were assisted by the Osceola County Sheriff’s Office, Clare County Sheriff’s Office, and the MSP crime lab in Grand Rapids.