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Karen Smith, an Executive Assistant at UT Southwestern, Was Shot to Death in a School Parking Garage [Updated]

Update at 10:23 a.m.: Police have identified the suspected shooter as 41-year-old Ferdinand Glen Smith, who has been charged with murder. He's being identified in media reports as Karen Smith's husband.

Update at 12:42 p.m.: The Morning News reports that the Ferdinand Smith has a history of abusing his wife that stretches back more than a decade. He was convicted of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon in 1999 and received 10 years probation, which he successfully completed.

Karen Smith's stepfather, Lewis Horton, told the News that there had been other incidents -- threats and beatings and an attempted strangulation -- but apparently nothing that resulted in additional criminal charges.

Ferdinand Smith allegedly confronted his wife in the parking garage last night with the gun he carries as a security guard at the Faith Family Academy charter school. The couple reportedly has three kids, ages 8, 14, and 18.

Original post: Last night at about 7:45 p.m., five shots rang out at a UT Southwestern parking garage. School police arrived minutes later and began conducting a floor-by-floor search. On the fourth floor is where Dallas police say they found the body of Karen Cox Smith, a 40-year-old executive assistant, lying face-up on the ground, her head and upper body riddled with multiple gunshot wounds.

"Nothing like this has happened here in three decades," UT Southwestern spokesman Russell Rian told WFAA.

According to a post on UT Southwestern's Facebook page last night, the school does "not believe this to be a random incident." They updated their page this morning to report that a suspect, who has not yet been identified, has been arrested.

"[P]olice believe this was an isolated domestic incident," the post said. "This tragedy remains under investigation by UT Southwestern Police and Dallas Police."

According to public salary data, Smith has worked at the school for just over two years in the office of the executive vice president for health system affairs.


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