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Husband sought after woman killed at apartment complex near Rex Hospital

Posted May 21, 2015
Updated May 22, 2015

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— A woman was shot to death Thursday morning by her husband as she was getting out of a car at a west Raleigh apartment complex, police said.

The shooting occurred at 2413 Wesvill Court, off Lake Boone Trail near Rex Hospital, at about 11:30 a.m.

Joni Rider, who lives at the apartment complex, said she heard three or four gunshots, followed by some screaming or yelling and then another series of shots.

Police have issued an arrest warrant for Michael Rashun Sutton, 42, with murder in the death of Tonya Lashawn Sutton, 39, but he wasn't in custody Thursday evening.

Michael Sutton is described as black, about 5 feet 10 inches tall with a medium build. When last seen, he was wearing a blue shirt and khaki trousers.

Police said he fled the shooting scene in a light blue, two-door 2005 Toyota Solara.

In a 911 call released Thursday afternoon, a male caller said Tonya Sutton was at his apartment when Michael Sutton fired several shots at his door. Tonya Sutton ran outside, where Michael Sutton shot her, the caller said. Police found Tonya Sutton's body on a sidewalk at the complex.

Maurice Royal said he ran outside to where his daughter was playing when he heard gunshots.

"I ran out just in case I had to take cover for my daughter. I was just looking out for everybody, all the kids," Royal said, adding that he will never forget what he saw in front of his apartment building.

"I just saw a lady on the ground dead," he said. "I was like, 'Oh, man, I've got two daughters. That could have been my daughter.'"

Rider, likewise, was horrified by what she saw on the nearby sidewalk.

"She was dead. She wasn't moving," she said. "I never saw a dead person before (except) on TV."

Neighbors spent much of the afternoon watching the police investigation unfold in front of their homes.

"It's the middle of the day. The kids will be coming out, and if this will happen when the kids are around, this is very scary," resident Akeyo Akeyo said.

Anyone who might know Michael Sutton's whereabouts is asked to 911 or Raleigh Crime Stoppers at 919-834-4357.

4 Comments

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  • Jared Russell May 22, 2015
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    I'm not saying she deserved it.

  • Dennis Midkiff May 22, 2015
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    Really? She may not have been the best wife, but it doesn't warrant being killed.

  • Jared Russell May 22, 2015
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    If the wife was cheating I honesty don't feel too bad for her.

  • Aanritsen Deur May 22, 2015
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    Hope he's found quickly and faces the full wrath of justice.