Local News

Woman fatally shot outside textile plant; suspect caught

Posted April 29, 2008 5:32 p.m. EDT
Updated April 30, 2008 4:08 p.m. EDT

— A man accused of fatally shooting his ex-girlfriend outside a textile plant in Hoke County Tuesday afternoon was captured hours later 20 miles away.

Cherquita McDonald, 28, was shot multiple times in the head at about 4 p.m. in the parking lot of Burlington Industries at 1001 Turnpike Road, Raeford Police Chief Mike Dummett said.

McDonald, who worked at the plant, was taken to Cape Fear Valley Medical Center in Fayetteville, where she died.

Sheriff's deputies said the man who allegedly shot her, Jonathan Dion Melvin, 30, ditched his car behind the Short Stop gas station on Turnpike Road and Highway 211, then ran through some woods.

Raeford police got a tip that Melvin was at an undisclosed location in Fayetteville, about 20 miles east. They called Fayetteville police, who arrested Melvin just before 7 p.m.

Police said Melvin and McDonald had been together for more than a decade. They had three children together, ages 2, 3 and 7. McDonald had broken up with Melvin about a month ago, according to family members.

The victim's family also told WRAL that a couple of weeks ago, Melvin crashed his car into a car that McDonald was driving. The family said Melvin had physically abused McDonald in the past and that she had considered taking out a restraining order against him, but had never done it.

"Even though they go through their problems, they always get back together," the victim's brother, Kendrick McDonald, said.

McDonald worked as many as three jobs at a time and was studying criminal justice at Sandhills Community College in Pinehurst.

"She worked hard. She tried to provide for her kids. She didn't deserve this at all," Kendrick McDonald said.

Melvin was being held without bond Wednesday at the Hoke County Jail.