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Shooting in maintenance yard leaves employee dead

STANFORD -- A Stanford University maintenance worker was fatally shot Wednesday morning, Sept. 9, and his wife arrested at the scene for the killing, Stanford police reported.

The victim in the 11:50 a.m. shooting outside the Steam Shop on Bonair Siding near Campus Drive, in the northeast corner of campus, was identified by Stanford police as Vernon McMullen, 58, a longtime university steamfitter.

His wife, Ora McMullen, 59, of Menlo Park, was arrested at the scene by Stanford police officers from the nearby campus station. McMullen was shot once in the head while in a university truck. Witnesses said there had been a brief altercation in the parking lot beforehand between the couple.

Ora McMullen was booked at the campus police station on charges of murder and taken to the county jail. Police did not have a motive, but said there may have been domestic problems. Chief Marvin Herrington said Ora McMullen fired only at her husband and no onlookers were endangered.

One Operations and Maintenance worker said many employees in the area "were in shock" from having witnessed either the shooting or its aftermath. Counselors from the university Help Center were sent to the scene to assist.

The murder was the first on the Stanford campus since 1982 and the sixth since 1971. The fall quarter begins Sept. 30, so there are very few students and faculty members on campus. The shooting took place in an area of campus far removed from most academic and residential buildings.



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