Homicide victim ID’d; suspects ‘extremely dangerous’

Lawdale Avenue, Niles Township
Authorities on the scene of a homicide on Lawndale Avenue south of Niles. (Aug. 13, 2017)

NILES TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — Investigators are releasing the name of a Berrien County woman who was shot and killed in her basement as the search for her killers continues.

The Berrien County Sheriff’s Office says 55-year-old Carla Jean Lewis died at the scene of the shooting, which happened just before 6 p.m. Sunday in the 1400 block of Lawndale Avenue in Niles Township.

The victim’s husband, 49-year-old John Benton Lewis, told dispatchers the men entered entered his home and shot his wife.

The sheriff’s office says the suspects took the victim’s dark-colored 2008 Mazda CX-9, which has the Michigan license plate of CMY3721. The undersheriff says the suspects should be considered armed and extremely dangerous.

Authorities say they arrested the victim’s husband on an unrelated charge of violating the Medical Marijuana Act, which they discovered during the investigation.

The undersheriff said investigators are looking into whether the couple’s home was targeted because of the presence of medical marijuana.

Anyone with information can call the Berrien County Sheriff’s Office at 269.983.7141 or submit a tip online.