Sunflower woman found shot to death Sunday morning

By BY RECARDO THOMAS STAFF REPORTER,

Correction: Sunflower Police Chief Bobby Walker has issued a statement stating that the 9mm clip seen the photo is not evidence in this case. The E-T apologizes for any confusion brought on by the photo. Walker said his officer would not have handled evidence from the scene without gloves. Walker will be providing more details on the case later this week.

Once again weekend violence has claimed the life of another young woman, this time in the town of Sunflower.

Sunflower Police Chief Bobby Walker said his officers received the call around 8:10 a.m. Sunday morning and responded to the Sunflower River apartment complex where they found 30-year-old Constance Russell, a mother of two, unresponsive with a gunshot wound to the head.

According to Walker, Sunflower County Coroner Heather Burton estimated that the preliminary time of death was between 3:30 a.m. and 5 a.m.

"Nobody heard the gunshot. (The neighbor who) lives right next door to her said she didn't hear the gunshot. She (the neighbor) said she was sound asleep," Walker said.

He said the initial indication is that the bullet entered through the side of Russell's neck and exited through her nose.

Walker said a bullet hole was found in the front door and a neighbor who noticed the broken glass called officers. The assailant evidently exited through a back bedroom window, Walker said.

Although no charges have been filed, Walker said they have 27-year-old Albert Carpenter III in custody but only as a person of interest at this time.

Walker said they currently have no other suspects.

"I kind of think we got the right guy," he said.

Nonetheless, the investigation is ongoing and Carpenter simply remains as a person of interest.

Walker said Carpenter and Russell had been in a two-year relationship with some domestic violence issues and had a six-month old child together but had been separated for the past three months

"He is saying that he had nothing to do with it," Walker said.

According to Walker, Carpenter said he made it home around 1:47 a.m. and never left.

The matter is still under investigation.

Police confiscated a 9 mm shell casing and an unknown bullet fragment at the scene. Walker indicated that Carpenter gave them permission to test four of his weapons.

Officers also apparently found a magazine clip from a 9 mm weapon, and those, along with some articles of his clothing, a gunshot residue test and other evidence were all being sent to the state crime lab for testing.

Anyone with any information is asked to contact the Sunflower Police Department.

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