Investigation of teacher’s death ongoing 

May 6, 2024

Juan Carlos Lozano

‘The pathologist’s findings are going to play a big part in this investigation.’

By Allison Scarbrough, News Editor

HART — The Oceana County Sheriff’s Office continues to “actively investigate” the suspicious death of 33-year-old teacher Juan Carlos Lozano of New Era, according to Oceana County Sheriff Craig Mast. 

Lozano was found dead on private property in the 5800 block of West Taylor Road in Mears, May 1, after Mason-Oceana 911 received a call asking for help.

Lozano was a seventh grade math teacher at Lee Middle School at Godfrey-Lee Public Schools in Wyoming, Mich. He grew up in Shelby and was a 2009 graduate of Shelby High School. 

“We’re investigating all aspects of this, including serving several search warrants on some electronics, trying to backtrack movements and whereabouts,” said Mast Monday, May 6. “A forensic autopsy has been done, but the findings are not completed. It’s really going to be up to the pathologist as far as what he deems this as — if he deems this as homicide or suicide. The pathologist’s findings are going to play a big part in this investigation.”

Lozano’s injuries were consistent with a gunshot wound. “A handgun was recovered at the scene,” said Mast. 

He was a 2015 graduate of Baker College in Muskegon where he studied secondary education with a major in mathematics. He was also named the Michigan student teacher of the year in 2015. He performed his student teaching at Holton Public Schools and had worked as a substitute teacher in Oceana County before working in Wyoming. In 2015, he was named Michigan student teacher of the year.

Godfrey-Lee Public Schools canceled classes last Friday, May 3, as a result of Lozano’s death.

The Michigan State Police mobile crime lab was called to assist with the scene investigation. The MSP-Hart Post, Hart Area Fire Department, Shelby-Benona Fire Department, Life EMS and the sheriff’s office Victim Services Unit also responded to the scene.

Two sheriff’s office detectives are focused solely on the investigation. “We’re working as hard as we can on it right now. We are investigating this actively.”

Editor-in-Chief Rob Alway contributed to this report

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