Local News

Police: Butcher kills romantic rival in Piggly Wiggly

Posted July 16, 2009 11:54 a.m. EDT
Updated July 16, 2009 6:37 p.m. EDT

— A butcher at a local Piggly Wiggly supermarket on Thursday shot and killed a man who was dating his ex-girlfriend, police said.

The shooting occurred at about 8:45 a.m. inside the store at 229 E. Church St., said Detective Chris Young of the Laurinburg Police Department.

Three customers and 10 other employees were in the store at the time, but no one else was injured, Young said.

Police arrested the butcher, identified as Aubrey Odum, 28, and charged him with murder.

Young said Odum's ex-girlfriend, Victoria Blackwell, went to the Piggly Wiggly Thursday morning with her new boyfriend, Brian McLean, 35, and her cousin. McLean went to the back of the store to confront Odum over something, and an altercation ensued, Young said.

It was unclear why McLean confronted Odum, he said.

"What I understand is that there was some type of domestic situation that took place between the two men," Laurinburg Police Capt. Kimothy Monroe said.

Blackwell, who didn't go inside the store, had tipped Odum off that McLean planned to confront him at the store, Young said, so Odum armed himself with a small-caliber handgun.

Odum shot McLean three times, including once in the back, and he staggered to the front of the store before collapsing near the checkout register. Young said.

Paramedics took McLean to Scotland Memorial Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Odum, who had two children with Blackwell, ages 2 and 5, then drove over to the Laurinburg police station and surrendered.

"That's an unusual situation for us and took us by surprise," Monroe said. "He actually walked in with the gun and said, 'I'm the one who did the shooting.' Just like that."

Odum told investigators that he often carries a gun to work, Monroe said, despite that fact that he doesn't have a concealed weapons permits and Piggly Wiggly policy prohibits firearms in the store.

Store employees declined to talk after the incident, but Kevin Gibson, who works at a neighboring mechanic's shop and often spoke with Odum, said the bloodshed came out of the blue.

"Nothing seemed odd this morning at all," Gibson said. "He always seemed like a nice gentleman."