"We just don't know how this happened yet," admits Lt. Bruce Ferguson of the Lansing Police Department. There are too many questions unanswered, he says, about the stabbing death of Curt Coffey. Coffey was found stabbed in the middle of the street on the 900 block of Lapeer Street Friday afternoon. Police still don't know for sure why Coffey was even there.
"Did he have a past altercation in the area? You know, did he have an ongoing disagreement with someone?" poses Ferguson.
Family friend Kirk Liebengood says that Coffey was in Lansing on his way to visit a friend when he got lost in the Lapeer neighborhood. But Ferguson maintains the murder of this recent high school grad was not random.
"The person may have known [Coffey], had a previous disagreement or some sort of prior contact," he says.
The location of Coffey's death is especially remarkable because Lapeer Street is a road with a tumultuous history.
"Years ago, unfortunately, that neighborhood was known for open-air drug markets," Ferguson says. But he says those days have passed and it's unfounded to assume Coffey was on Lapeer Street for drug-related reasons. Nevertheless, he says the situation is fishy; it's "absolutely" unusual to have a stabbing death in the middle of the street at dusk.
Police are also still looking into another stabbing murder from the same night that allegedly has no relation to Coffey's. For now, police will continue investigating how this young man from a small town got killed in the middle of a quiet Lansing street.