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Chili's employee shot 5 to 6 times at close range

Arturo Exum accused of killing Lester Wilson-Reid at Miami Gardens restaurant

MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. – A man accused of fatally shooting an employee inside a Chili's restaurant Monday in Miami Gardens walked past several managers without saying a word, pulled out a gun and fired several shots at the victim, who was standing just feet away, according to an arrest affidavit.

Arturo Exum, 31, was arrested Tuesday on a charge of first-degree murder and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.

Miami Gardens police said Exum shot Chili's cook Lester Wilson-Reid after the victim got into an argument with a co-worker, who was Exum's former girlfriend.

According to an arrest affidavit obtained Wednesday by Local 10 News, detectives reviewed the Chili's surveillance video that showed Exum casually walk through the restaurant to the kitchen, where Exum pulled a gun out of his left pants pocket and fired five or six shots at Wilson-Reid's chest from about 3 feet away.

Wilson-Reid was taken to Aventura Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

"I'm angry at that person who pulled the trigger, because he had no sovereign, spiritual right to do that," widow Claudine Wilson-Reid told Local 10 News reporter Terrell Forney.

Claudine Wilson-Reid said her late husband of 14 years was always fighting for his family.

"I can give him that credit in life and death," she said.

Detectives interviewed Exum's girlfriend, who told police that she hadn't been getting along with Wilson-Reid since she started working at the restaurant three weeks ago. She told detectives that she had talked to Exum about the "verbal back and forth" with Wilson-Reid and that Exum offered to confront Wilson-Reid, but she told him that she would "handle it."

Exum's ex-girlfriend, who has three children with him, told detectives that everything at work was fine Monday until she gave Wilson-Reid a to-go order and he refused to speak with her, the report said. She told one of her kitchen managers about the issue and then sent Exum a text message that she was "having a problem with the cook again."

Lester Wilson-Reid was fatally shot while working at a Chili's restaurant in Miami Gardens.
Lester Wilson-Reid was fatally shot while working at a Chili's restaurant in Miami Gardens.

Exum wrote back that he was on his way to the restaurant, and she put her phone away, she told detectives.

Several of Wilson-Reid's co-workers identified Exum from a photographic lineup as the shooter.

Detectives wrote in the report that Exum, who worked at another Chili's location, shot Wilson-Reid "within 3 feet from where he stood cooking" without saying a word to the victim.

"He didn't see nothing like this coming, and he didn't go looking for it," Claudine Wilson-Reid said of her husband's shooting.

Exum turned himself in Tuesday morning at the Miami Gardens Police Department. Exum, who was accompanied by his attorney, invoked his right to remain silent and refused to answer any questions about the shooting.

Lester Wilson-Reid's widow says their sons are having a hard time coping with his death.
Lester Wilson-Reid's widow says their sons are having a hard time coping with his death.

Claudine Wilson-Reid said her sons, 14 and 9, are struggling emotionally since their father's death.

"They're not doing good," she said. "The little one is a bit in denial. He's still waiting for him to come home."

Exum appeared before a Miami-Dade County judge Wednesday. He was ordered held without bond.


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