A woman is accused of fatally shooting a co-worker on July 23 at an Arkansas plant after the two apparently had an earlier altercation, authorities said.
Lillie Foots-Wilson was being held on a first-degree murder charge, but hadn’t been formally charged. Police Lt. JoAnn Bates said Foots-Wilson shot Latange Long after they got into some kind of altercation at a Pine Bluff plant that makes parts for transformers.
No one else was hurt in the shooting at the Central Moloney Inc. components plant, but company spokesman Chris Hart said dozens of other people were nearby.
Foots-Wilson, 49, was being held at the Jefferson County Jail.
Her husband, Gary Wilson, said they were working on getting a lawyer. He said the incident was unfortunate and that there had been some bad blood between his wife and the 34-year-old Long. He said Long had bullied Foots-Wilson.
Long’s family could not be reached for comment.
When asked whether his wife shot Long, Wilson said, “I didn’t see her shoot her. It was reported to me that that’s what took place.”
Foots-Wilson and Long showed up to work early to put in an hour of overtime before their regular shifts started at 7 a.m., Hart said. They worked within earshot of each other, running plastic injection molding presses, he said.
The women got into a fight at some point, though authorities were still investigating what they were arguing about.
“That argument led to (Foots-Wilson) leaving work saying she was sick,” Hart said.
A short while later, she came back and shot Long multiple times with a revolver, he said.
The Pine Bluff-based company sent the rest of the people that were working Monday morning home with pay and canceled work for people scheduled to come in later that day, Hart said. “We aren’t even going to think about trying to build components again until (Tuesday),” he said.
Long had worked at the plant since 2004 or 2005. Foots-Wilson had been there for a while longer.
“We haven’t done that paperwork, but rest assured she’s no longer going to be employed with us,” Hart said.
Foots-Wilson’s husband, meanwhile, said the company didn’t handle the situation between the two women well.
“They had an employee that was bullying my wife and things just got out of hand,” he said.
Hart said there had been some disagreements between the two of them before they started working the same shift, but he said he didn’t know of any bullying.
“We were completely stunned and caught off guard by this incident,” he said.