CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - A man shot and killed at an apartment complex in Cornelius late Monday night was identified by police as 45-year-old Marc Mays.
“He was a nice neighbor, always friendly, never heard a disturbance or anything like that. Just all around nice guy,” said a neighbor of Marc Mays. “He helped me out a few times. I helped him out a few times. He come into my house and talked a while and just talk about everyday things - if he had a problem with the car or something and I would try to help him out.”
The shooting, which police are calling an armed robbery, happened around 11:30 p.m. at the Admirals Quarters complex off Nautical Drive. Mays was found dead with gunshot wounds.
Cornelius Police declined WBTV’s requests for interviews to talk about the case because they say “this is still an active and ongoing investigation.”
A man who knows the victim and his girlfriend told WBTV that Mays and his girlfriend had just arrived home and were still at their vehicle when the suspects jumped them. He says the victim pushed his girlfriend behind him and took the shots.
The suspects grabbed some personal items from the couple then drove off.
“I heard three gunshots and I turned my TV down thinking like what the heck was that," said neighbor Kelly Braman. "Then I heard a woman scream and then I heard a car speed off like tires squealing.”
Braman said minutes later emergency crews showed up.
Police say the shooter(s) fled in a dark green or blue-colored mid-size SUV.
Witnesses described the vehicle as having a loud exhaust, possibly due to a mechanical issue. The driver was described as a bald black man in his mid-20s. The passenger is described as a black man in his mid-20s with scruffy facial hair last seen wearing a dark-colored hoodie.
“We just heard a couple of shots and we thought it was a wreck… honestly we didn’t know what was going on” said Korbin Thompson.
Braman added, "and it was back to back to back. The shots were ‘bam bam bam. Scream.' And then the tires like in sync with each other. It was crazy.”
Police believe at least two other parties were involved in the shooting, which is being investigated as a homicide.
"For something like that to happen in a neighborhood like this where people barely even go outside in is crazy,” Thompson said.
And for Braman, "It’s a little scary to think that something like this happened at night. I don’t even feel comfortable walking my dog at night right now.”
Now, neighbors are wondering while waiting for answers about the random robbery that ended with a man losing his life.
"That was awful," said the neighbor and friend of the victim. "This type of thing this can happen anywhere. Cornelius. NC, U.S anywhere so just to go ahead – I hear people say I want to move and they just want to go to change of zip code. It's stupid. It's a nice area okay."
Anyone with information is asked to call the Cornelius Police Department at 704-892-7773 or North Meck Crime Stoppers at 704-896-7867.