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Search for murder suspect, Skiba, ends with apparent suicide

Submitted by on July 23, 2010 – 3:45 amNo Comment

The search for an Alpena man accused of killing his former girlfriend has ended with an apparent suicide.

At approximately 8 a.m. Thursday, Alcona County Deputies were called to a home in the 500 block of Hubbard Lake Road for a person in distress.  Police were told a female had been stabbed and that her mother was attempting to render first aid.

A suspect was quickly developed after police were told the victim had broke up with the man, 40 year-old Kelby L. Skiba, about a week earlier.  State Police detectives from Alpena, Gaylord and Houghton, along with the MSP fugitive team and HUNT all helped searched for Skiba throughout the day and early evening hours.

At approximately 7 o’clock Thursday night, officers from HUNT and the MSP fugitive team located Skiba at a cabin off Tolan Road in the Black River area.  As they entered the cabin, a gunshot was fired from inside, forcing police to take cover and come up with a new plan.  Police eventually re-entered the cabin and found Skiba dead of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound. 

Police also said the victim, 29 year-old Kecia M. Gauthier, appears to have died of at least one gunshot wound and not a stabbing. 

The preliminary investigation indicates Skiba may have been stalking Gauthier for 2-3 days before the apparent murder-suicide took place.