A Collier County man accused of killing a young mother in a shooting outside an East Naples bar early Sunday morning faced a judge Monday. Carlos Ruben Rodriguez, 24, is charged with second-degree murder, aggravated battery, and possession of a gun by a convicted felon.
The shooting happened outside the Breaktime Lounge on Gulfstream Drive at about 1 a.m. Sunday. Kelsey Engelsen, 24, was killed. Another woman, Cassandra Santos, was struck in the arm by a bullet.
"From what I heard, there was an argument outside, a fight between two guys - him and another guy," said Mike Hysler, owner of the bar and the boyfriend of Engelsen. He was not present at the time of the shooting.
"He pulled out his gun and started spraying bullets," Hysler said. "One caught Kelsey right in the side, killed her."
Collier County Sheriff's deputies say witnesses told them the shooter was Rodriquez, who then barricaded himself in his room at the Paradise Inn down the street. A SWAT team arrived and got him out a few hours later.
"Why was he even out in the streets?" Hysler said. "He's a convicted felon, he shouldn't even have a gun."
Fox 4 discovered that Rodriguez has several prior arrests, including one for firing a weapon at either an occupied home or vehicle. Hysler said Rodriguez had been kicked out of the Breaktime Lounge the previous night, and was told not to return.
But witnesses told police he did come back, and now Hysler is mourning the loss of his girlfriend, who he said had a two-year-old daughter.
"She had a little girl, that's the saddest part," Hysler said. "Just sad, the whole thing."
And if he could say anything to Rodriguez?
"I hope you rot in hell," Hysler said. "You shouldn't be alive, but if you're going to be, I hope you suffer."
A GoFundMe page was set up to help Engelsen's family with funeral expenses. By Monday evening, it had almost reached it's goal of $10,000.
A judge set Rodriguez's bond at $1,350,000.