Witnesses say a man and woman appeared to be arguing in the moments before she was stabbed to death Thursday night in a well-lit Kmart parking lot in south Wichita, police said Friday. A man described as her boyfriend was later booked into jail on a homicide charge, police said.
The 35-year-old woman was stabbed several times just after 10 p.m. in the parking lot of the retailer at 4840 S. Broadway, Lt. Todd Ojile said. She was taken to Via Christi Hospital on St. Francis, where she was pronounced dead at 10:36 p.m.
Her 39-year-old boyfriend was suffering from two stab wounds when he was found by officers lying near her in the parking lot, Ojile said. He underwent surgery at St. Francis and was later released to police custody.
A weapon was found at the scene, Ojile said, but he would not offer specifics.
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“We don’t have any witnesses to what actually occurred,” he said.
A truck driver was asleep in his cab not far from where the couple was found.
“He awoke to a scream, and then looked out and saw the female on the ground,” Ojile said.
Another witness who was leaving a nearby restaurant told police about a man standing above the woman at one time during the incident, Ojile said.
“They did not observe any physical contact between the two,” he said of the second witness.
Police think the man standing above the woman was her boyfriend. They had been staying with family members until earlier in the week, Ojile said.
“They had been staying at a hotel just east of the Kmart parking lot and had just been evicted,” he said.
They were leaving the hotel after being evicted when the stabbings occurred.
The woman’s name had not been released, pending notification of relatives. She had moved here last summer from another town in Kansas, Ojile said.
Her boyfriend is a Wichita resident.
This is the fifth homicide of the year in the city, Ojile said.