A small town Halloween party made nationwide news a year ago due to the tragic disappearance and murder of local resident Chelsea Bruck.
The 2014 Halloween party was hosted by Mike Williams, 31, more often referred to as Big Mike.
Despite the tragedy, Williams held another Halloween party this year, but it was moved Downriver and was combined with Diddybop Entertainment.
Williams has been having parties like this on and off since high school. He has always had a decent turnout and never expected anything like this to happen.
“It’s just a horrible incident,” Williams said. “I could never anticipate anything like this to happen.”
“It’s just crazy, you hear about this stuff on the news all the time and having it happen literally in your own backyard, it’s pretty crazy.”
Williams estimated there were about 1,000 people at the 2014 party, coming and going. There was a bigger turnout at this party than any of his in the past.
“More people showed up than normal, because I ran out of parking; people started parking on the streets,” Williams said.
“Between the hours of 12 – 2 a.m., I was trying to get people off the streets.”
Williams likes throwing the parties because he’s an entertainer. He is a vocalist in a band called Pick Axe Preacher.
Williams and his band received a lot of bad publicity when Bruck disappeared. He said he thought they handled the publicity well, limiting the posts on Facebook. He also made posts informing people about Bruck.
Many people didn’t think much about it when they first heard Bruck was missing, Williams said.
They figured maybe she was drunk and went home with friends. Williams had the same thoughts at first.
“Maybe they were overreacting, maybe she’s just drunk somewhere,” he said.
Williams was active in the search and very cooperative with the family.
“Monday around 1 or 2 I took the dog out for a walk looking for Chelsea, then he stepped on a fox trap as I’m looking,” he said. “I’m walking back with him, I have blood on me and the family is in my yard; it just looked really bad.”
“By the time I got back from the vet, there were about 20 cars in my side field, so I helped them search,” Williams said.
“It was like a circus for two weeks in my yard, constant news crews and search parties.”
He thinks he did all he could in the pre-planning of the party.
“They are really thought-out parties,” he said. “I had 15 guys running security for me. I had organized parking, people were running the parking.”
After everything that happened with Bruck, Williams said that he would never have another party. But he changed his mond and decided to move the party 45 miles north to Hamtramck.
According to Williams, Bruck had attended two parties before the 2014 version. She was a fan, he said.
“I feel horrible for Chelsea’s family, I couldn’t imagine,” Williams said.
He said the SWAT team paid him a very unpleasant visit.
“They weren’t very nice to me; I even let them in,” Williams said. “They talked very nasty to me, threw me on the ground, told me they were going to shoot my dog.”
“They dug up stuff I burned back in high school; I mean, that’s how far they dug back.”
Williams said many people blamed him for the disappearance. They said it was partly his fault for throwing a party that big.
“People were coming by all hours of the night. Some lady came out at 3 a.m. with her dog to search my yard,” Williams said. “Drones were peeking in my windows at night, helicopters flying over my house. It was the first time in my life I didn’t feel safe in my own home.”
Chelsea Bruck’s remains were found in April, almost six months after the party, in a wooded area off Briar Hill Road in north Monroe County. Workers building a house in the area got their truck stuck and stumbled on the body when they got out.