Slain woman reported stalking, abuse by ex-boyfriend

Advocate staff photo by PATRICK DENNIS -- Crime scene investigators with the Baton Rouge Police Department return to a house at 2343 Iowa Street, where a woman who had complainted of abuse by a former boyfriend was found slain. Show caption
Advocate staff photo by PATRICK DENNIS -- Crime scene investigators with the Baton Rouge Police Department return to a house at 2343 Iowa Street, where a woman who had complainted of abuse by a former boyfriend was found slain.

Former boyfriend under restraining order

A woman found fatally shot Sunday had taken out a restraining order against her ex-boyfriend last month, claiming the man had become increasingly violent and threatened to kill her and her children, according to court records.

Less than 24 hours before she was found dead inside her Iowa Street home, Amanda Lea McCullough, 31, called Baton Rouge police to report her suspicion that her ex-boyfriend, Carlos J. Thomas, had recently broken into the home and left without taking anything, according to a police report.

McCullough, who worked as a nurse at Baton Rouge General Medical Center, had been trying to sell the home, according to her family. Police have said a family member discovered McCullough dead inside the home about 3:30 p.m. Sunday.

East Baton Rouge Parish Coroner Dr. Beau Clark said she received multiple gunshot wounds. The time of her death was unknown.

McCullough told investigators on Saturday that she had kicked Thomas out a couple of months ago, and that he had been harassing her ever since, according to a police report.

Although she had a house in Baton Rouge, McCullough had been staying in LaPlace, said Cpl. Tommy Stubbs, a police spokesman.

Detectives have not named any suspects or determined a motive in the killing, Stubbs said.

Thomas could not be reached for comment.

While Thomas has not been named a suspect in McCullough’s slaying, court records show McCullough had felt threatened by him. In her petition for a protective order, she said Thomas had shoved her, stalked her and threatened her 6-year-old son and 4-year-old daughter.

“The defendant verbally threatened to set my house on fire with my son and I in the house sleeping,” McCullough said in the petition, describing an April 18 incident. Thomas had threatened to “shoot through the windows of my home, with my son and I inside,” she added.

McCullough alleged Thomas also had taken her daughter last month “and threatened her life verbally to me on the phone and via text messages. He would call and let her cry in the phone, then hang up before I could console her,” she said in court filings.

McCullough said Thomas had shoved her three different times and “threatened to blow my brains out on several different occasions in front of my children.”

“I have witnessed the defendant physically harm a complete stranger at least twice since I’ve known him,” she added.

A temporary restraining order was issued April 22 forbidding Thomas from coming within 100 yards of McCullough or her residence. McCullough had been scheduled to appear in court Wednesday to seek a permanent restraining order, court records show.

McCullough told police Saturday that someone had broken her side bedroom window and apparently entered her house sometime between May 6 and Saturday.

Nothing was missing from the residence, but McCullough found the dead bolt on the front door unlocked, suggesting someone left through that door.

Police were unable to lift any fingerprints from the scene, according the report.

A family member described McCullough as a devoted mother who had been trying desperately to get away from Baton Rouge. “She didn’t deserve this,” the family member said.