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St. Joseph man says daughter-in-law planned son's murder

It's been the hardest two weeks of Tyrone Hassel Jr.’s life, coping with the death of his son Tyrone Hassel III, who died on New Year’s Eve. Hassel Jr. laid his son to rest Saturday, but the information he's learned about how his son was killed still haunts him. He think’s his daughter-in-law is responsible. (WWMT/FILE)

It's been the hardest two weeks of Tyrone Hassel Jr.’s life, coping with the death of his son Tyrone Hassel III, who died on New Year’s Eve. Hassel Jr. laid his son to rest Saturday, but the information he's learned about how his son was killed still haunts him. He think’s his daughter-in-law is responsible.

"You know, it's kind of mixed feelings, because we did get closure laying him to rest," he said. "But the closure we got was something totally unexpected."

Family gathered to mourn the loss of Hassel III on the day of his funeral at his family's house on Colfax Avenue in St. Joseph Township, where his life family said his life was taken.

"A person that took in as a daughter, and I still don't have the answers of why, you know. I really loved this person,” Hassel Jr. said of his late son’s wife, Kemia Hassel.

Hassel Jr. believes Kemia planned his son’s murder.

"It was planned out. It was. Basically, my son was assassinated,” Hassel Jr. said.

He said his son and daughter-in-law were visiting for the holidays from Fort Stewart in Georgia. Hassel III was a U.S. Army sergeant. His wife is listed in his obituary as a U.S. Army specialist. The two had a baby together, according to the family.

St. Joseph Township Police announced two arrests connected to the homicide Saturday morning, but haven't released suspect names. However, Kemia Hassel is listed in custody on the Berrien County Jail website, booked on a murder charge.

Hassel Jr. said he thinks one or two other people are involved, but doesn't know who they are. He hasn't talked to Kemia, but has spoken to her family.

"They've reached out to me, and they apologized,” he said. “But it's they don't know, they don't know what to do. I don't know what to do."

Hassel Jr. said his son was an amazing person, and never heard a bad thing said about him.

"I believe prayer works, and I believe that's what brought this to light. I wanted the answers out before his memorial service, and it came out before his memorial service,” Hassel Jr. said.

The St. Joseph Township Police Department said it will be releasing more information on Monday about the suspects arrested in connection to this case.

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