Charges issued in death of Taylor police officer


Photos by Tom Tigani

Photos by Tom Tigani

The patrol car of Cpl. Matthew Edwards, who was killed in the line of duty last month, is parked in silent tribute outside the Taylor Police Department statue on Priebe Plaza.

Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy has charged Tyress Trearndos Mathews, 36, of Westland, in connection with the July 23 shooting that resulted in the death of Taylor Police Department Officer Cpl. Matthew Edwards.

Mathews has been charged with premeditated first-degree murder, a felony punishable by life in prison without parole; murder of a peace officer, a felony punishable by life in prison without parole; assault with intent to murder, a felony punishable by life or any term of years; felon in possession, a felony punishable by five years in prison; felony firearm, a mandatory two-year sentence, and as a habitual fourth offender, which is punishable by life if the primary offense has a penalty of five years or more.

About 5:47 a.m July 23, Edwards and Cpl. Gregory Piche arrived at the 12000 block of Pine Street on word of a breaking and entering in progress. Edwards and Piche saw a window screen off and lying on the ground and observed the defendant leaning on a minivan parked outside of the residence.

The officers exited their vehicle and Mathews approached them, carrying a bag. Mathews allegedly had an argument with his wife and told them he needed to re-enter their apartment to get his keys.

While Mathews was with Edwards, he allegedly fired a handgun, fatally striking the officer. Edwards fell to the ground and the defendant continued firing the weapon. Mathews turned to run with the handgun and the bag when Piche and Mathews exchanged gunfire.

Several Taylor officers then arrived at the scene. Edwards was pronounced dead at a local hospital. Mathews also was taken hospitalized and currently is being treated.

“Cpl. Edwards from all accounts was a committed and well-respected law enforcement professional,” Worthy said. “He dedicated his life to making Taylor a safe place to live and died tragically in the line of duty. We owe a debt of gratitude to Cpl. Edwards, who was taken from his family and the law enforcement community much too soon.”

Arrangements for Mathews’ arraignment were pending at press time.

“I would ask the community to continue to keep Cpl. Edwards’ family in their prayers and in the days to come, as his family tries to comprehend the circumstances surrounding this tragic incident,” Police Chief Dale Tamsen said. “I would also like to thank the community and other police agencies for the outpouring of support shown to our department at this time. The response has been incredible, and our department will now try to start the healing process.”