The man accused of killing 38-year-old Melissa Villagrana at Walmart on Monday night has died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound following a lengthy standoff at a movie theater in Kerrville.
Fernando Rolon Jr., 45, was found concealed in the theater with a gunshot wound to the head at about 2:55 p.m. Tuesday, according to a KPD news release. He was taken by ambulance to Peterson Regional Medical Center, treated in the emergency room, and was pronounced deceased by a justice of the peace.
Rolon had been tracked to the theater shortly after police found Villagrana’s body at 10:23 p.m. Monday in the parking lot of Walmart. Rolon and Villagrana “reportedly knew the victim,” according to the KPD release. No more details on the relationship or possible motive was immediately available.
Villagrana was a Walmart employee.
"We are deeply saddened by this incident and our thoughts and prayers are with the family of our associate," said Anne Hatfield, Walmart spokeswoman, in a Tuesday email.
Based on social media posts and other information, Rolon was believed to be heavily armed. Investigators learned that Rolon was an employee at the Rio 10 Theater in Kerrville, and a KPD officer found Rolon’s car in theater parking lot.
Police shut down Bandera Highway from Loop 534 to Texas 16 and established a cordon around the area. Negotiators made phone contact with Rolon, who was hiding inside the theater, and attempted to convince him to surrender.
According to the KPD release, “Rolon stated several times that he was willing to give himself up, but after several hours he broke off communication.”
Rolon apparently ignored repeated attempts by negotiators to re-establish contact.
“Rolon remained barricaded inside the theater and refused to surrender himself to law enforcement,” states the KPD release.
A KPD Special Operations Unit entered the theater and deployed tear gas “in order to convince Rolon to surrender,” but the man remain concealed, the news release says. A SWAT team operated by the Texas Department of Public Safety entered the theater and eventually found Rolon.
The Texas Rangers and the Kerrville Police Department are handling the investigation.
“The Kerrville Police Department sends their sincere condolences to the family and loved ones of Melissa Villagrana,” states the KPD release. “The Kerrville Police Department wishes to thank the citizens of Kerrville for providing vital information which helped lead to a resolution of this tragic event. We would also like to thank the Kerr County Sheriff’s Department for their invaluable assistance during this event.”