Robert Pannell Florida man kills Paducah, KY hotel employee after couple declined to offer him light during meltdown which saw him shooting indiscriminately inside hotel lobby.
Probably not the hotel guest of the year… A Florida man is alleged to have fatally shot a Kentucky hotel employee moments after assaulting a couple at a parking lot after declining to offer him a cigarette lighter.
Upon his arrest, Robert Pannell, 55, was charged with first degree murder along with assault, wanton endangerment, disorderly conduct, menacing, and resisting arrest according to the McCracken County Sheriff’s Office.
Law enforcement officers were called to a Best Western hotel in Paducah, Kentucky following reports of an active shooter around 9:48 a.m. on Saturday morning.
A Paducah police officer located Pannell in the parking lot and detained him, while a sheriff’s deputy began searching the hotel whereupon they came across a female worker on the first floor with multiple gunshot wounds to the head and body.
The victim was taken to a local hospital, with deputies saying she was being kept alive for organ donation. The victim’s name was not publicly disclosed pending notification of next of kin.
What brought Robert Pannell to Paducah, Kentucky?
Officers told of finding a discarded handgun inside the lobby of the hotel.
During investigations, detectives learned that Pannell allegedly assaulted a couple in the parking lot after they couldn’t give him a cigarette lighter.
He then entered the hotel with a handgun and opened fire indiscriminately, killing the hapless hotel worker. No one else was struck by gunfire according to McCracken County Sheriff Ryan Norman.
Pannell hailing from Palm Coast, Florida, was staying at the hotel at the time of the shooting. It remained unclear what brought Pannell to Paducah, Kentucky.
He is being held at the McCracken County Jail on a combined bond of $2.5 million, according to jail records.