HAMPTON, Va. (WAVY) – Hampton Police have identified a man suspected in a recent business robbery and attempted maiming case.
22-year-old Kristian Malone, of Newport News, is wanted in connection to the incident and is considered armed and dangerous.
Police say they received a call to respond to Merryman Grounds Maintenance in the 1st block of Ranhorne Court, around 1:15 p.m. Monday, Oct. 3.
The investigation revealed an employee, who police have identified as Malone, got into an argument with a co-worker inside the business.
The suspect left, then returned with a gun and demanded money. As he walked away from the business, after getting an undisclosed amount of money, police say he fired several shots towards the victim.
Police confirm no one was injured.
10 On Your Side tried contacting the owner of MGM, David Merryman, with no response. This is not the first time MGM has made headlines. Nearly five months ago U.S. Marshals arrested Merryman after he refused to pay his employees more than $45,000 in back wages.
One year ago, former Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring filed a lawsuit against Merryman stating he violated the Virginia Fair Housing Law following a pattern of abusive, racist, sexist and otherwise unlawful behavior.
“It has just been an utter nightmare. This gentleman is something else,” said Jodi Durham who rents one of Merryman’s properties.
Durham’s son Toby worked for Merryman up until this past May. To this day, Durham says Merryman owes her son $2,300.
“He didn’t pay my son. He wrote him a bounced check,” Durham explained.
Durham described a culture of abuse and exploitation at MGM. Durham’s adult son has a traumatic brain injury from a 2018 accident and is limited when it comes to operating machinery because he has seizures. Durham says on more than one occasion Merryman had Toby drive work vehicles.
“This gentleman, he preys on the weak. He preys on the weak and the vulnerable. He’s a predator and he takes advantage of people. He doesn’t pay a lot of his employees. There’s been a lot of employees that have quit,” Durham claimed.
Durham says she isn’t surprised the business was robbed by an employee.
“I’m surprised it’s only been one. I’m very surprised it’s only been one,” Durham said.
Police have not revealed the identity of the victim but say the person also works at the company.
Malone has warrants on file for two counts of shooting into an occupied dwelling, two counts of use of a firearm in commission of a felony, one count of robbery, one count of attempt maiming, and one count of brandishing.
If you have any information about this case, you can submit an anonymous tip by calling 1-888-LOCK-U-UP, downloading the P3 tips app to a mobile device, or visiting www.P3tips.com and submitting a tip.
** Correction: Police initially spelled the suspect’s name as Khristian, but confirmed the correct spelling is Kristian.