Live and Let Live
I was on my way to take photographs of a minor crime scene when a shooting call was broadcast in my area. I was about 3 minutes away and raced to the scene. Witnesses called 911 to report a man shooting at a woman in an apartment complex parking lot.
I pulled onto the street behind my Sergeant and saw a body lying on the ground next to a parked vehicle. A car pulled up with a security guard who witnessed the incident. A Hispanic male just shot a woman 5 times; he left north into the apartment complex; he's wearing black shorts, a black t-shirt over a white t-shirt and has white shoes.
The helicopter is soon overhead as my squad mates take up perimeter positions all around the complex. A K9 officer arrives with his dog to begin a search. The security guard stays with me as I move to a corner perimeter position. He tells me how he saw a couple fighting in an SUV as it drove down the road. At a stoplight, the female passenger tried to get out of the SUV but the male driver pulled her back in by the hair. She screamed for help but the driver took off before anyone could do anything. The security guard followed them to the apartment complex. The driver got out of the vehicle, went around to the passenger side and opened her door. He leaned in, hugged her, and caressed her face. "Everything will be all right." he assured her.
He then took two steps back, pulled a handgun and shot her 4 or 5 times. The security guard feared for his life and drove off when the shooting started.
As I try to calm him down and get more details, the K9 officer comes over and asks the witness again for a description of the shooter. The security guard gives the description and the K9 officer seems somewhat relieved.
"What's up?" I ask the officer.
"Looks like the shooter did himself in."
The body I saw on the ground turned out to be the shooter himself. After killing the girl, he put a bullet in his own head. I took the guard over to the scene where he positively identified the dead male as the shooter.
When the detectives arrived I was able to get a close up look at the victim and the killer. She was slumped over in the passenger seat of the SUV with multiple fatal gunshot wounds. The young man had a large exit wound near his right temple. A handgun rested on the ground between his knees. They appeared to be in their early twenties.
The news media arrived soon after and set up multiple live broadcasts from the scene. News vans, lights, reporters, and cameramen massed outside the crime scene tape I strung from my patrol car.
I couldn't imagine how a relationship could end like this. The New Year is a time for change, resolution, and renewal. I found myself wondering if her New Year resolution was to improve her life by breaking up with this guy. If so, it's a shame they way he responded. Why can't people just live their own life and let others do the same?