Police said the mother of a Florida student who was taking her lessons online on her first day was killed while her 10-year-old son was making a zoom call with her class.
The shooting occurred at 08:00 local time (13:00 GMT) in Indiantown, Florida and was witnessed by five other children at home.
According to investigators, the girl’s teacher overheard an argument and was able to mute the sound before the fatal shooting.
The suspect, Donald Williams, 27, was arrested after he fled on a bike.
Maribel Rosado Morales, 32, was killed in front of her four children and two cousins, according to the Martin County Sheriff’s Office.
The girl, who attended Warfield Elementary School, was taking her first day of lessons online after the coronavirus pandemic forced schools in the area to switch to online learning. Florida is one of the hardest-hit states in the United States with more than 542,000 infections.
At a press conference, Sheriff William Snyder said Mr. Williams went home to confront his ex-girlfriend over a Facebook video.
He said that the teacher “heard a noise, heard profanity, and realized that it was a kind of house quarrel.”
He continued, “The teacher said that she had hidden her button [so] no one had to hear it, then she saw the 10-year-old girl putting her hands on her ears,” adding that the screen turned black as soon as the child reacted. .
He added that a bullet had been found that hit the computer.
Williams ran off by bike before boarding the city bus. After Mr. Williams asked the driver to take him to a neighborhood not en route, the driver called the police.
Williams was arrested by a SWAT team that was training in the area at the time. According to Al-Sharif, he has already given “full recognition.”
He was charged with premeditated murder, as well as several other criminal charges, including being a convicted felon with possession of a weapon. Al-Sharif said that he would also be charged with armed robbery and armed storming of the house, and that there may be additional penalties for having children during the alleged crime.
Investigators said the Florida Department of Children and Families will be tasked with finding new homes for the victim’s children, who are between the ages of 10 and 17.
Warfield Elementary School and Martin County School District said in a statement, “Our deepest sympathy and condolences to the family of the victim, including the children in the home who witnessed this senseless tragedy.”
“Our grief team has been deployed to assist students and staff who will undoubtedly feel the impact of this horrific accident. We are ready to help and support in any way we can.”