Western Michigan reports third possible New Year’s-related gunfire death

Grand Rapids police said Tuesday that gunfire from a party on New Year’s Day may have caused a third death in western Michigan.

The 16-year-old Joseph “Jo-Jo” Ivory Jr. died of a single gunshot wound and was ruled to have been the victim of a homicide by the medical examiner.

Police Chief Eric Winstrom confirmed that Ivory was out with friends on New Year’s Eve and there was a lot of extremely dangerous celebratory gunfire close to the victim.

Ivory was driving a stolen BMW on Blaine Avenue SE and Boston Street. He tried to drive away from the area after getting shot, according to Winstrom.

It is too early to tell which round killed Ivory. However, Winstrom mentioned that multiple guns were being fired at the scene as a kind of holiday celebration.

Although it is too soon to draw definitive conclusions regarding the bullet that killed him, there were multiple firearms being shot in close proximity to Ivory as a form of holiday celebration.

Eric Winstrom, Grand Rapids Police Chief

Winstrom also said since the investigation involves the death of a 16-year-old kid, they are “taking this extremely seriously.”

Meanwhile, Joseph Ivery Sr. said that his son led a delighted life. He had no animosity toward anyone until he joined a gang.

Ivory’s father also mentioned that his son had recently completed probation and was making positive changes in his life.

All it took for a young man like Ivory to lose his life was to hang out with other young men who did criminal things like steal cars and carry guns, Winstrom said.

Lawrence Township shooting

At the same time as the shooting in Grand Rapids, two men were killed when gunshots were fired while fireworks were going off in Lawrence Township.

The incident occurred at a small New Year’s Eve celebration on the 57000 block of 60th Avenue, east of County Road 681 in Lawrence Township in Van Buren County.

David Reed, 35, who lived in Waverly Township, and Jason McCreary, 40, from Sutter Creek, California, died in the shooting.

Deputies confirmed that McCreary, who was shot in the head, died at the scene and Reed died later at the hospital from his wounds.

A 62-year-old man from Lawrence Township was arrested at the scene and charged with negligently discharging a firearm resulting in death.