FLINT, Mich. — A prosecutor says a Flint woman accused of participating in the killing of her mother 25 years ago was motivated by the potential of collecting on a life insurance policy.
Gabrielle Houston, 47, and Kareem Grant, 45, were arraigned Thursday in Genesee District Court on charges including first-degree premeditated murder, felony firearm and armed robbery, the Flint Journal reported .
Flint investigators who worked on the cold case declined to comment in detail about what led to the arrests in 46-year-old Ida Houston’s murder. She was fatally shot in her home in December 1991.
Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton said the break in the cold case came after police found a witness who saw Grant shoot Ida Houston several times as well as his attempt to shoot her in October of the same year. Leyton said Gabrielle Houston was a beneficiary on a life insurance policy covering Ida Houston.
“(Ida Houston) had suspicions. She thought somebody was trying to kill her,” said Ruby Fields, Ida Houston’s sister. “She was concerned — very concerned, but she said she wasn’t going to change her lifestyle” because of it.
Ida Houston lived with her daughter and another sister at the time of her death, and Flint investigators said friends and family described her as a “God-fearing, church-going woman.”
“She (Ida) was the sweetest person you would ever want to meet,” Fields said. “She didn’t deserve this. Who can imagine their own child having something to do with this?”
Police have said the two defendants were involved in a relationship at the time of the death.
Gabrielle Houston and Grant face a mandatory sentence of life in prison without parole if convicted.
The two are being held without bond. Court records didn’t list attorneys for them Friday.
Information from: The Flint Journal, http://www.mlive.com/flint