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Police release name of clerk killed in Fort Mill shooting

FORT MILL — Authorities have released the name of the Fort Mill store ownerwho was fatally shot Thursday night.

Mhandi Patel, 48, of Charlotte was killed around 8:45 p.m., at theSunoco Petro Mart at 810 Tom Hall St. Patel died from a gun shot wound, saidYork County Interim Coroner Sabrina Gast.

Gast declined to say where Patel was shot or how many times he was shot. Anautopsy is planned for this afternoon.

Capt. Bryan Zachary said no one has been arrested in connection with theincident.

Fort Mill police said they were called to the scene by someone whowalked into the store and apparently found the man's body, Zachary said. Police confirmed late Thursday that the victim was the owner of thestore. A K-9 unit was used to track the shooter, Zachary said, but as of12:45 this morning police had not made any arrests. Police also werestudying surveillance video from the store and a nearby bank.

"I can't tell you if anything was actually taken (during the incident),"Zachary said as he stood in the store parking lot.

The convenience store sits between South Carolina Bank and Trust and LosAztegas Restaurant and Family Dollar.

Police said they would not release any more information until midmorningtoday. The investigation has been turned over to the State Law EnforcementDivision. Late Thursday, some family members and customers gathered in surroundingparking lots. Wanda Estes, a frequent shopper, lives behind the store in anapartment complex and said she frequently spoke to the victim.

"It's just sad somebody had to die over money," said Estes, who addedshe visits the store three or four times a week. "He was an extremely niceman."

Estes' 9-year-old son, Dylan Williamson, tearfully recalled the clerkwho he said was always nice to him.

"He usually lets me have stuff for a $1 when it cost $2," he said. The slaying is the second at a York County convenience store in lessthan three months. On Oct. 10, popular Rock Hill clerk Ned Marshall, 69, waskilled during a robbery at the Little Giant/Celanese BP gas station onCelanese Road.

Anyone with information about Thursday's killing is asked to callCrimeStoppers of York County at 1-877-409-4321, or the Fort Mill PoliceDepartment at 547-2022.

Toya Graham 329-4062 tgraham@heraldonline.com

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