"Nicole always had a smile on her face, and anybody who had any association with her couldn't help but like her," her boss said.
Trigger Warning: This story mentions gun violence which some readers may find distressing.
A 28-year-old woman, Nicole Hammond, was shot dead on October 24, for allegedly rejecting her co-worker's advances. The suspect, Michael Carpenter, was charged with second-degree murder and was arrested on the same day, as reported by Kansas City Star. Hammond had "repeatedly" rejected Michael Carpenter, her co-worker's advances over the past month. Text messages revealed that Hammond had texted Carpenter the day before the murder saying that she did not want to be touched or manipulated by him.
The woman was shot dead around 7 am on Monday outside the business in St. Cloud. Co-workers informed the St. Cloud Police that Carpenter made several unwanted advances towards Hammond, but her boss told Fox9 that nothing was reported to the management. "Unfortunately, we had no idea," Hammond's boss Rob Dubow said. "Any time there is anything that requires our intervention we step in. But in this case, we had no indication that there was anything awry."
Dubow said that Hammond was a great employee and everyone loved working with her. "Nicole always had a smile on her face, and anybody who had any association with her couldn't help but like her," he said. Hammond was found dead by the police on the ground of a parking lot with a gunshot wound, police said in a press release. She was pronounced dead at the scene, with a single shell casing near her. Police said that a witness heard the gunshot, then saw Carpenter jog to his vehicle before driving away. A second witness also saw him as he was putting on a black jacket while wearing black pants, according to court records. He was wearing the same outfit when the police found him.
Media Release regarding the homicide this morning. An arrest has been made. pic.twitter.com/HmmHPtDubt— SCPD (@StCloudPDMN) October 24, 2022
After the investigation, the detectives identified the suspect around 10 am. Carpenter was shortly arrested. He gave contradictory information to the police. He said that he walked toward Hammond's car when he heard the gunshot, but ran away when "he was too traumatized” after seeing her body. “He didn’t render aid, go to work, nor did he call 9-1-1,” police said. Co-workers stated that Carpenter has a "bad temper." He told the officers that he was "upset" about the conversation that he had with Hammond the night before the shooting.
"A handgun was recovered as the result of the arrest," police stated. He is currently being kept at the Benton County Jail and has not been arraigned. It was unclear whether he obtained an attorney to speak on his behalf, as reported by PEOPLE.
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