Photo: Detroit Police

Detroit Police Still Searching For Suspect Wanted For Beating Berkley Man To Death After Crash

Chief says Tyler Wingate was likely killed by a kick to the head

July 24, 2019 - 1:46 pm

DETROIT (WWJ) - Police continue their search for the man they say beat Tyler Wingate of Berkley to death following a car crash on Detroit's west side.

Wingate was driving a 2011 Buick Regal, just before 2 a.m. Monday, when investigators say he was involved in an accident with a man driving a 2007 Chevy Impala in the 13500 block of Livernois near Davison.

When the 24-year-old victim got out of his vehicle, presumably to check on the damage, he was beaten and kicked to death by the driver of the Impala, according to witnesses.

The suspect fled on foot with three other men and left his car at the scene, where Wingate was pronounced dead.

Lawrence James Davis (Photo: Detroit Police)
Police have since identified the suspect as 23-year-old Lawrence James Davis, whose photo was released to the media Monday night.  

Police have not said what led to the crash or what escalated the situation. 

Speaking to reporters on Wednesday, Detroit Police James Craig said it's believed it was a kick to the head that killed Wingate.

"So after the suspect, who by the way has a history of violence dating back to when he was 15 years old, he after the last final blow to the victim, it appears he attempts to render some kind of aid."

Craig said Davis put water on the victim's face and then checked his pulse before walking away. 

Davis remained at large, according to the chief, as of Wednesday afternoon. It was not clear if the three men who fled the scene with him were involved in the beating.

Anyone who knows of Davis' whereabouts or has any information about this crime is asked to contact the Detroit Police Department’s Homicide Unit at 313-596-2260.

Wingate's family described their great loss in a Go Fund Me page set up to defray the costs of his funeral.

"Tyler was known for his contagious smile, constant good spirit and loving character. All of Oakland county knows and loves the Wingate family. Though the loss of Tyler will never be easy, help for the costs of the funeral, etc will allow one less thing for the Wingate family to think about during this time of grieving."

Nearly $30,000 has been raised in his honor.

"We share our extreme sorrow in this senseless crime, and pray for peace in the hearts and souls of all impacted. Tyler was a beautiful soul and good friend to our daughter," Mary Carleton Smith wrote.