In 2014, Arkansas Realtor Beverly Carter was kidnapped and killed after showing a home to the man convicted for her murder, Arron Lewis.
Real estate professionals across the nation were shaken to their core by the news of Carter’s death and became increasingly vigilant about the danger that agents face every day when they meet clients and view homes alone. But since then, a number of agents have unfortunately met the same fate as Carter.
Most recently, two real estate professionals in different parts of the country were shot within the past few days, one on Friday and one on Monday.
One real estate agent was at home in Abilene, Texas, and one real estate investor in Atlanta was visiting a property that he might have been considering purchasing.
Tom Niblo in Abilene
Tom Niblo, a commercial agent and the vice president of Senter Realtors, was killed at his home located in south Abilene, Texas, on December 12.
His wife, who was at home at the time of the shooting, says she heard someone enter the house. Shortly thereafter, she reported hearing a series of gunshots before she escaped through the back door.
Abilene police officials haven’t offered too much information about the case, but they believe Niblo was targeted for unspecified reasons.
“He (Niblo) was such an ultimate businessman and full of integrity,” said Scott Senter of Senter Realtors in a statement to KTXS 12 News.
“He did it with charisma and gusto. And he was an awesome operator of our commercial real estate company.”
David Abbasi in Atlanta
Meanwhile, the Atlanta real estate community is reeling from its own tragedy.
David Abbasi, who was the managing principal at RockPoint Capital, was found dead inside a partially renovated Howell Station home.
According to a report by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the home had been sitting unfinished for well over a year, and police believe Abbasi was considering purchasing the home.
Neighbors believe an armed drifter may be to blame for his death.
“It was in disrepair, and a lot of neighbors complained to code enforcement trying to get them to either demolish the house or properly board it up,” neighbor Kathleen O’Loughlin told WSB-TV News.
Abbasi’s family, which consists of his wife and kids, hasn’t spoken about his death, but a neighbor said Abbasi was a “great guy” and had “the quintessential American family.”
Both cases are still being investigated, and no suspects have been named.