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Monday, November 12, 2007

Prosecutor: 'Thrill kill' led teens to murder, decapitate man

11-30-2007 Case Update

These handout photos show Alexander James Letkemann, left, and Jean Pierre Orlewicz, suspects in the murder of Daniel Sorenson. They are accused in the planning, ambush and slaying of 26-year-old Daniel Sorenson last Wednesday in a Canton Township garage owned by Orlewicz's grandfather, Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy said. ( Courtesy Canton Police Department)
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NORTHVILLE TOWNSHIP -- In announcing the arrests of two teenagers today, Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy said they stabbed Daniel G. Sorensen to death, sawed off his head and used a blow torch to burn his body simply for the thrill.

"All of us have seen every type of crime available and why someone would kill for the thrill of it amazes us," Worthy said at a press conference at the Northville Township Police Department.

Sorensen, 26, of River Rouge, was found dead Thursday at the end of a yet-to-be-developed subdivision cul-de-sac in Northville Township off Ridge Road just south of Maybury State Park. His severed head was found Saturday in a section of Hines Park located in Dearborn Heights.

Jean Pierre Orlewicz, 17, of Plymouth and Alexander James Letkemann, 18, of Westland, were arraigned via video today in Romulus District Court on charges of premeditated murder, felony murder and mutilation of a corpse. The homicide charges carry sentences of up to life. A preliminary exam is set for Nov. 19 at 35th District Court in Plymouth.

Sorensen had owed Orlewicz "small amounts" that weren't a factor in the premeditated killing, Worthy said. The men were acquaintances, but she declined to further detail their relationship. The pair killed Sorensen in a Canton Township home owned by Orlewicz's grandfather, Worthy alleged.

"They lured him into a garage where a space had been prepared to kill him," Worth said.

Worthy said the pair stabbed Sorensen in the back multiple times, then sawed off his head. The garage had been prepared with a tarp on the floor and cleaning supplies standing by to clean up the blood. She called the killing "bone-chilling."

It is alleged the pair tried to conceal the identity of the victim by using a blow torch to burn his hands and feet. Gasoline was used to set the body on fire after it was dumped in the empty lot in Northville Township.

"I'm very shocked," said Jack Ryan, 59, out walking his dog Monday on the same block of Holly Lane in Canton Township where the slaying allegedly took place on Wednesday. Although he noticed police in the neighborhood this morning, he didn't see detectives and crime scene technicians collecting evidence from the garage near his home over the weekend.

"Nothing goes on in the neighborhood. At night, you don't hear anything," Ryan said about the working-class street where he has lived for 25 years.

He added that he didn't know the victim or his grandfather because his neighbors all work hard and keep to themselves.

Worthy said Sorensen's status as a sex offender had nothing to do with his death. His name is listed on registries in Michigan and Illinois for a 1998 incident in Illinois.

State Police forensic science technicians were able to identify Sorensen with one clear fingerprint. Tips from unnamed sources led police to find Sorensen's head and his pickup truck Friday night in the parking lot of a Meijer store at Newburgh and Warren in Westland.

Policed announced Friday night three persons of interest had been identified and arrest warrants were being sought. Police declined to confirm whether anyone was under arrest. Worthy said only Letkemann and Orlewicz are under arrest, but the investigation of the potential involvement of others continues.

"Investigators have worked tirelessly, virtually around the clock, gathering information, developing leads, collecting evidence, and executing search warrants," said John Werth, director of public safety for Northville Township.

"By putting the pieces together, we were able to determine who was responsible for this terrible act and where the death took place. Due to the incident's complexity and the numerous details that have arisen, no further information will be available until the preliminary examination."

With help from Michigan State Police, Livonia, River Rouge, Wayne County Sheriff's deputies and Canton and Plymouth townships, it took detectives just 34 hours to solve the case.

"As a result of a multi-jurisdictional collaborative effort by numerous law enforcement agencies the Canton Police were able to arrest and charge two individuals for this horrific and heinous crime," said Director of Public Safety, John Santomauro.

Northville Township Police needed just 17 hours to unravel the homicide of Cheryl Lynn Boeskool, 44, of Garden City, who found floating on Aug. 7 in a retention pond at Country Club Village on Haggerty near Six Mile. Police determined she had been had killed by multiple blows to her head and face and her body dumped in the pond.

Her boyfriend, Thomas Joseph Roe, 62, awaits trail after allegedly confessing to the slaying.

The killing is at least the second in Metro Detroit involving decapitations. In Macomb County, Stephen Grant faces an upcoming trial on allegations he strangled his wife in their Washington Township home and dismembered her body before strewing it in a nearby park. ..more.. by Doug Guthrie (734) 462-2674 or

See Background Articles for more information on this case!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thrill Kill?
This man was killed because he was a sex offender!

Just a way to protect a worthless registry...