A Ridgeland man faces a murder charge after an argument over a cellphone turned deadly Saturday evening, according to officials from the Ridgeland Police Department and the Jasper County Coroner's Office.
Jamia Almodoval, 41, was charged Saturday, jail records show.
The incident began around 5 p.m. at the Siesta Motel, an extended-stay motel in which Almodoval and his romantic partner, Bethany Bennett, 37, were living. A verbal argument arose between the two in reference to Bennett's cellphone, which she believed had been taken by Almodoval, according to Lt. Daniel Litchfield of the Ridgeland Police Department.
As the argument escalated, Bennett grabbed a knife and stabbed Almodoval in the hand, Litchfield said. Almodoval left the room and walked outside the building, followed by Bennett.
Almodoval then returned to the room and locked Bennett outside. As Bennett pounded on the door trying to get back in, Almodoval shot her with a rifle through the door, according to police.
Litchfield said Bennett received two gunshot wounds - one in her arm and the other in the chest.
Bennett was taken to Coastal Carolina Hospital, where she was pronounced dead at approximately 6 p.m., according to Willie Aiken III of the Jasper County Coroner's Office. An autopsy is scheduled for Tuesday at the Medical University of South Carolina.
Almodoval was in custody at the Jasper County Detention Center as of Monday afternoon.
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The Island Packet and Beaufort Gazette publishes police booking photos, or mugshots, in the following instances:
In situations where a public figure or someone in a position of public trust is arrested
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