Who was Nichelle Thomas? NYC mom, 51, shot dead by ex-girlfriend Latisha Bell, 38, in disturbing video

A neighbor said the couple lived together for years and had a toxic relationship but they parted ways about three years ago

                            Who was Nichelle Thomas? NYC mom, 51, shot dead by ex-girlfriend Latisha Bell, 38, in disturbing video
Nichelle Thomas shot in broad daylight (Surveillance footage / Twitter / NY Post)

WARNING: Disturbing surveillance footage inside. Viewer discretion advised.

BROOKLYN, NEW YORK: A chilling video captured the moment a woman was fatally shot in the head in Park Slope, Brooklyn, in broad daylight on Wednesday, April 21. Nichelle Thomas, 51, was seen walking down Fourth Avenue in Park Slope, apparently going to a store on the corner of St Marks Place, according to surveillance footage.

According to police reports, a suspect has been apprehended. Footage obtained by The New York Post showed the victim approaching a bodega at the intersection of Fourth Avenue and St Mark’s Place, reportedly unaware her killer was coming up behind her to shoot her. Latisha Bell, 38, of the Bronx was arrested and charged with second-degree murder and criminal possession of a weapon.


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Who was Nichelle Thomas?

Nichelle Thomas, 52, was a Brooklyn-based mother. According to police and witnesses, she was killed when he ex-girlfriend approached her from behind, pulled out a pistol and shot her in the head, NY Daily News reported.

Thomas was described by her neighbors and family as a friendly woman who was often seen walking her dogs. “She was a very nice lady,” said a shaken neighbor of Thomas. “She didn’t deserve this.” The victim's daughter said that she was still processing what had occurred. “I’m confused,” she said. “I don’t know what happened. I can’t talk right now.” The victim and her former partner, according to a neighbor, had a toxic relationship. “They lived together for years,” they said. “But they were always fighting. They had a big falling out about three years ago and she left.”




Disturbing surveillance footage

Thomas' last moments were captured on horrifying surveillance footage around 1 pm as she walked in no apparent hurry to a deli on the corner of Fourth Avenue and St Marks Place. Thomas was being followed by her assailant the whole time, as footage from the scene indicates.

The gunwoman bolted from the street to the sidewalk, sped past an unwitting commuter and charged up to Thomas. The killer raised a gun to the back of her head and fired point-blank as Thomas opened the door to the deli, following which she collapsed to the ground in the 9-second video, the reports stated. She never saw it coming. The attacker then ran off. According to police, she was rushed to New York-Presbyterian Brooklyn Methodist Hospital, where she died.



'She was a very nice person'

“I had a lot of people here inside the place and we thought it was like a firecracker or something and then we saw the lady fall over,” deli worker Mohammed Ali, 57, said. “The man next to the ATM machine said the lady went down,” he said. “At that point, I said there’s got to be something wrong so I looked at the cameras. When I went outside, I saw the blood coming from her head. I know the lady. She was a very nice person. She was always here. I’ve known her a long time."

Witnesses defined the situation as chaotic. “I heard two shots, looked out the window saw the cops and ambulance and came out and just saw everyone else looking around trying to see what was going on,” Tiffany Williams, 39, who lives across the street, said. She added that EMTs tried desperately to save the victim’s life.

The shocking murder was the first shooting and homicide in Park Slope, a neighborhood in one of the city's least violent precincts, this year. According to police reports, overall crime in Park Slope has decreased by 5 per cent as of Sunday, April 18, but attack cases have increased by 50 per cent, from 18 last year to 27 this year, the NY Daily News stated.