05/05/09 — Woman shot as she tried to leave club

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Woman shot as she tried to leave club

By Nick Hiltunen
Published in News on May 5, 2009 1:46 PM

MOUNT OLIVE -- A woman died at Pitt Memorial Hospital Monday afternoon after a club shooting at N.C. 55 nightclub early Monday morning, authorities say.

Kendra Nyetta Smalls, 21, of West Chestnut Street, died after the shooting that also injured two others, whose identities have yet to be released.

An autopsy on Mrs. Smalls was to be conducted this morning, Sheriff's Office Capt. Tom Effler said.

It is not clear whether Mrs. Smalls suffered fatal injury inside the club, or later, when a vehicle struck her car and fired rounds at her while she tried to escape, Effler said.

At first, Mrs. Smalls was able to drive away from Club Exscape, but an unknown vehicle struck her car and fired at her again, and she was struck with "several projectiles," according to the report.

Mrs. Smalls had been in "very critical" condition before she died Monday afternoon, authorities said.

Detectives still are not totally sure who will be charged in the incident, but have suspects, Effler said.

"We're still doing investigation," he said. "And still hoping that charges will be pending."

The captain said Sheriff's Office detectives "have an idea" of the identity of the other two women who apparently suffered gunshot wounds. But evidence is not yet concrete enough to release their names.

Ms. Smalls was at first able to leave the club around 1:30 a.m. on Monday, after three as-yet unidentified black men "entered the business and started shooting," according to the release.

Detectives Rick Farfour and Robert Chunn responded to the scene, taking evidence from the club, just west of Thunder Swamp Road on N.C. 55.

The club's owner, Ricky Artis, reported the shooting, according to the report.