Sunday, November 4, 2007

Officer Kevin Brainard - suicide - Plainwell PD

Officer Kevin Brainard [Plainwell PD]

On November 04, 2007, Officer Kevin Brainard murdered his wife Pam Aukerman Brainard and then committed suicide.

Pam Aukerman murder:

Update: Abuse allegations in murder-suicide
Posted by llupo
November 05, 2007 22:33PM

OTSEGO -- A 31-year-old woman slain by her husband, a Plainwell police officer, told him she planned to leave him before he allegedly shot her and then himself in a murder-suicide, friends of the woman say.

"He tried to control everything she did," said Rich Klemmer, a friend of Pam Brainard. "When he thought he was going to lose her, he offed her."

Klemmer, who knew Brainard as a caring nurse who worked in Kalamazoo, left a bouquet of flowers on the Brainards' front porch this afternoon and briefly prayed.

Police believe Kevin Brainard, a seven-year officer with the Plainwell Public Safety Department and an Otsego firefighter, first shot his wife and then himself sometime Sunday night. She was discovered dead at their Brookside Drive home, while Kevin Brainard died later at the hospital.

The couple's 2-year-old daughter, Kayla, was in the home during the shootings but was not harmed.

Family and friends of Pam Brainard said she was in an emotionally abusive relationship, but was hesitant to go to police because her husband was an officer.But Otsego Police Chief Gordon Konkle said police would have taken any complaint seriously. "Nothing was ever reported," he said. "(Domestic violence) is just not tolerated any more. We would not cover it up."

Updated: Nov 5, 2007 08:10 PM CST

OTSEGO -- Jennifer Drake remembers the last calls from and to the home on Brookeside Drive in Otsego Sunday Night.

One, a voice mail message from her brother-in-law, Kevin Brainard, followed by a call she made.

"I told her, I said, 'Pam, you've got to get out of the house. He's calling, leaving us messages. He doesn't sound good,'" Drake told 24 Hour News 8. "'Get out of the house!'"

Within that same hour, Pam Brainard, a nurse and mother of two, was dead. Police believe Kevin Brainard, a Plainwell police officer and firefighter, shot his wife and then turned the gun on himself.

The couple's 2-year-old daughter was in the home, but not injured.

"I knew how bad things are getting for her, but I really thought she was going to get out of there," Drake said.

Drake said her sister had just told Brainard she was filing for divorce. The two had been married about a year. But it was a tough year for Pam, according to her sister.

"He played mind games with her," Drake said. "I mean, her phone would be filled with 100 calls a day by him. Her receipts were checked. I mean, every little thing of hers was under a microscope with him.

"But Pam Brainard never contacted police. Her sister said she knew it could ruin his career, and she wasn't convinced she'd get anywhere with a complaint.

Drake said, "She didn't feel comfortable because of him being a police officer in that town."

But Otsego's police chief said police officers are held to higher standards.

"I think there's a lot of pain now. There's a lot of pain. She's upset," said Chief Gordon Konkle. "Hopefully she doesn't really believe that."

Kevin Brainard's boss, Plainwell Director of Public Safety Bill Bomar, said Brainard was a good officer who received commendations for traffic enforcement including drunk driving.

Brainard, like other officers in the department, went through a psychiatric evaluation before being hired.

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