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Police Seek Suspect After Woman Shot And Killed In Malden Home

MALDEN (CBS) – Police are searching for the suspect who allegedly shot and killed a woman Tuesday morning at a home in Malden. Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan said the victim, 30-year-old Erin Fitzgibbon, was a guest at the home and was "tragically in the wrong place at the wrong time."

The shooting happened on Fairmont Street around 7 a.m.

An arrest warrant has been issued for 30-year-old Brian Butler who described as a white male, 6'3" tall, 180 lbs. with brown hair and brown eyes. His last known address was 6 Vaughn Street in Everett.

Brian Butler
Brian Butler wanted in murder of woman in Malden (WBZ-TV)

Investigators say the 50-year-old woman who lives in the home was in her kitchen when Butler, who she knows, appeared at the back door with a gun. "She at first thought that was a joke, since she knew the individual," Ryan said. "When she went over and realized that he was not joking, was attempting to lock the back door, the individual discharged the gun at least twice."

The woman, her husband and her adult son then fled the home through the front door. When they got outside they heard an additional gunshot.

They then saw Butler leaving the house with a handgun and property from the room Fitzgibbon was staying in.

Fitzgibbon suffered an apparent gunshot wound to the head and was transported to Massachusetts General Hospital where she later died.

Brian Butler
Brian Butler was wanted for murder of woman in Malden (Image credit Middlesex DA)

Police would not say what Butler is accused of stealing from the home.

"Regardless of what the intention was or the property that was to be taken, this was, the shooting and killing of Miss Fitzgibbon in a bedroom presumably rising from sleep, completely unconnected to the events that had taken place and what was happening in that house," Ryan said.

Neighbor Lori Barkhouse said she was woken up by the commotion, and later saw a person being taken out on a stretcher from the nearby home.

"I woke up to yelling and screaming there was a gentleman walking out of the house, tall thin guy with a red bandana around his face," Barkhouse said, adding that the man had a gun in his hand.

Watch: Update From DA Marian Ryan

From her upstairs window, Barkhouse saw the man drive off in a gray or silver car. Her father got the license plate and gave it to police.

Barkhouse said there have been problems at the house before.

"We have no reason to believe that Miss Fitzgibbon is anything other than tragically in the wrong place at the wrong time," Ryan said.

Butler has been charged with murder, armed home invasion, armed assault with intent to murder, assault with a dangerous weapon, possession of a firearm and possession of a loaded firearm.

Investigators say anyone with information about Butler's whereabouts call Malden Police and not attempt to approach him.

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