Carrie Jean Melvin was just 30-years-old and, like many young people, moved to Los Angeles recently to follow a dream of making it in the entertainment business. A hard-worker, she waitressed, bartended, and worked as a production assistant for a movie company, among other jobs after studying film production in college, just trying to make her dream come true.
But her dream ended in a cruel and terrifying fashion Sunday night on a street in busy area of L.A.’s Hollywood district when an unidentified man armed with a shotgun approached her from behind shortly after 10 p.m. on July 5 and, without saying a word, shot Carrie Melvin in the back of the head, killing her.
According to witnesses, the cold-blooded murderer then got into a black car, which pulled away. Whether the killer himself was driving the car, or if he had an accomplice waiting to help with his escape, is unknown.
The big unknowns in the horrifying crime, however, are who — and why?
Police originally described the chilling murder as a random act of violence. But now detectives say that they are also considering the possibility that for some mysterious reason, Carrie Jean Melvin was targeted for death — even though she had no enemies, as far as they can tell.
The killing took place in an area just down the street from Hollywood and Highland, one of L.A.’s busiest and glitziest shopping malls. The Sunset Boulevard and McCadden Place neighborhood is just around the corner from Hollywood High School, whose alumni roster reads like a list of the names in stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, also just a short distance from where the young woman was slain.
According to police, Melvin was was walking with her boyfriend from her apartment to a nearby restaurant to grab a late bite to eat. Police have not released the boyfriend’s identity, but the gunman apparently showed no interest in him. He was not shot or injured.
The unnamed boyfriend told police that neither Carrie Melvin nor the gunman said anything to each other before the man shot her. The killer made no attempt at robbing either Carrie or her boyfriend.
“We’ve interviewed the boyfriend, there’s no indication that they had any idea there were enemies, that she would be targeted, so at this point we just don’t know,” LAPD Detective John Skaggs told KABC News. “On the other hand, it looks like it was directed toward her. We’re looking at all angles.”
“Everyone you talked to just loved her. She was a joy to be around,” Melvin’s father, Bernie Melvin, told the Los Angeles Times. “When she looked at you, you felt like you were in the spotlight.”
The man who killed Carrie Jean Melvin is described as African-American, in his late 20s, and approximately six feet tall. He was wearing dark clothing and a black hooded jacket at the time of the murder. Police are seeking any witnesses who may have information on the baffling and frightening murder. They say they have collected surveillance footage from a nearby business that may have captured the murder or its aftermath.
[Images: Carrie Jean Melvin / Facebook]