A now-fired professor at the University of West Georgia has been accused of fatally shooting an 18-year-old woman, officials said.
Richard Sigman, 47, was arrested and charged with murder shortly after Anne Jones, 18, died after being shot in a parking deck in Carrollton, Georgia on Saturday, the Carrollton Police Department said.
Police said the officers were initially called to the Tanner Medical Center in Carrollton at around 12:30 am over reports of a woman who had been shot.
Jones was pronounced dead at the medical center and Sigman was arrested and charged with murder, three counts of aggravated assault and possession of a firearm during the commission of crime, police said.
Callers told police that the incident unfolded off Adamson Square in a courthouse parking deck after Sigman got into a verbal altercation with another man at Leopoldo’s, a popular pizzeria in the square.
Police said the other man was alleged to have told at least one security guard that Sigman had threatened to shoot him. When security approached Sigman, they saw that he had a weapon and ordered him to leave.
Sigman left and began walking to the parking deck, where he began shooting into a parked vehicle, striking Jones, police said.
“Friends immediately drove her to the hospital, where she was pronounced dead,” police said.
In a statement provided to WXIA, an NBC affiliate based in Atlanta, a spokesperson for the University of West Georgia said Sigman was fired on Saturday.
“On behalf of the university, we wish to convey our deepest condolences to Anna’s family and many friends,” said Dr. Brendan Kelly, UWG’s president, in a statement shared with WXIA.
“We know this news is difficult to process and affects many members of our university community. We ask that you keep Anna’s family, friends, and all who have been touched by this tragedy in your thoughts during this tremendously difficult time,” the statement said.
The university did not immediately respond to a request for comment from NBC News. A webpage listing the school’s faculty with the Department of Management in the Richards College of Business had as recently as last month named “Rick Sigman” as a lecturer at the school. His profile of him has since been removed from the page.
According to WXIA, Jones had been enrolled to attend UWG in the fall, but police said she was not one of Sigman’s students, according to the outlet.
The teen had recently graduated from Mount Zion High School, according to a statement posted on social media by school leaders.
“Anna loved this school and this community and she will be missed dearly by many,” the statement said, sharing a link to a GoFundMe page set up to help cover funeral costs. As of early Monday, more than $17,800 had been raised.