Tuesday shooting a result of man upset over “rental charges,” say Tallahassee police

33-year-old Ernest Lawson was arrested for attempted homicide on Tuesday.
Published: Oct. 4, 2022 at 2:30 PM EDT|Updated: Oct. 4, 2022 at 6:45 PM EDT
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - The leasing office at a Tallahassee apartment complex is now closed until further notice.

That’s after a woman who worked there was shot in broad daylight on Tuesday.

Police said a tenant upset over rent waited hours outside the Blue Cascade Apartments before shooting his leasing manager.

WCTV did a quick search of TPD records and found nearly 170 calls to the neighborhood in the past year including for assaults, domestic violence, robbery and theft.

It was a quiet scene at the Blue Cascade Apartment Complex along Putnam Drive this Wednesday Afternoon but that wasn’t the case on Tuesday.

“I was driving by and saw a lot of police cars and then after I pulled up more and more police cars and then I heard like an ambulance, and I was like okay, something is wrong and then I also saw someone laying on the ground and I was like okay something is really wrong,” said Lynnada Bailey.

Police said 33-year-old Earnest Lawson waited for his leasing manager to show up to work before shooting her in the chest because he was upset over rental charges.

Some residents at the apartment complex said this isn’t the first time they’ve feared going home.

“I do feel a little unsafe but I was already feeling unsafe due to other prior incidents in this neighborhood. so, it’s like beware and being more secure when it comes to myself. It’s like I want something to be done but what can really be done,” said Timieka Dunkley.

FAMU student Kayla Campbell said the FAMU housing crisis played a role in her decision to stay at Blue Cascade’s and when her lease is up, she’s not sure if she’ll find anything else.

“Housing was already full because it’s a college town and it was already hard to find this place so if we could probably, but I don’t know if we’d be able to,” said Kayla Campbell.

Dunkley called on the apartment complex to step up security measures.

“I realize around here there are not many cameras like there are not many cameras where you can see the nit and gritty of certain instances,” said Timieka Dunkley.

Lawson is in the Leon County Jail on attempted homicide charges.

WCTV has reached out to managers at the apartment complex for comment and has not heard back.

A man who was upset over “rental charges,” waited for a woman to arrive at her workplace before shooting her Tuesday afternoon, said Tallahassee Police.

33-year-old Ernest Lawson was arrested and faces a charge of attempted homicide.

Police responded to the Blue Cascade Apartments on Putnam Drive around 12:20 p.m. where a woman had been seriously injured, said spokesperson Alicia Hill.

According to a 6:30 p.m. update, Lawson “waited for the victim to arrive at work and approached her as she exited her vehicle.” During the course of an investigation, it was determined that Lawson was upset over charges involving his rent, said TPD.

The woman was taken to the hospital for treatment. An update on her condition was not provided. Lawson was reportedly taken into custody without incident.

Citizens can report criminal activity by calling TPD at 850-891-4200, or anonymously by calling Crime Stoppers at 850-574-TIPS.