Slain woman’s ex booked with burglary

Carlos J. Thomas
Carlos J. Thomas

The ex-boyfriend of a woman who was fatally shot earlier this month has been booked on allegations he broke into the woman’s Baton Rouge home and stole several items just weeks before her death, court records show.

Carlos Jerome Thomas, 37, 2121 Highland Road, also is accused of taking Amanda Lea McCullough’s car in violation of a restraining order, records show.

McCullough, who was a nurse at Baton Rouge General Medical Center, felt increasingly threatened by Thomas and claimed he had threatened to kill her and her children, according to court records.

Thomas was booked last week with simple burglary and unauthorized use of a motor vehicle. He was still being held Monday in the East Baton Rouge Parish Prison in lieu of $35,000 bond, jail officials said.

Lt. Don Kelly, a police spokesman, said McCullough’s slaying remains under investigation and Thomas has not been charged in her death at this point.

McCullough, 31, was found shot to death May 12 inside her Iowa Street home, which she had been trying to sell. Police have said she was discovered by a family member.

The day McCullough’s body was found, officers stopped Thomas near his apartment and questioned him, according to recent court filings. Detectives searching his apartment found several pieces of furniture and two televisions McCullough had reported stolen from her home, according to arrest documents.

McCullough had kicked Thomas out of her home last month and changed the locks after the break-up, court records show. On April 20, McCullough called police to report someone had broken into her home through a window and taken a green couch, love seat, queen-size mattress, three televisions and other items.

“At the time, the victim suspected her ex-boyfriend, the defendant, of committing this burglary,” an affidavit of probable cause states.

Thomas admitted the property came from McCullough’s home, the affidavit shows, but he told detectives he had taken the items with him at the time he moved out.

The unauthorized use of a motor vehicle charge stemmed from Thomas being caught driving McCullough’s 1999 Ford Taurus after McCullough received a court order granting her use of the car.

McCullough had also called police less than 24 hours before she was killed to report her suspicion that Thomas had recently broken into the home but left without taking anything.

Nothing was missing on that occasion, but McCullough reported finding the deadbolt of the front door unlocked.

In a petition for a restraining order, McCullough claimed Thomas had “verbally threatened to set my house on fire with my son and I in the house sleeping.” Thomas also had threatened to “shoot through the windows of my home, with my son and I inside,” she added.

A temporary restraining order was issued April 22 forbidding Thomas from coming within 100 yards of McCullough or her residence.