SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) – A family is dealing with the unfathomable loss of their loved one.
The Salt Lake City Police Department (SLCPD) say a 29-year-old mother was shot and killed near a nightclub after getting involved in an altercation.
Family members and loved ones have confirmed the woman’s identity as Nichole Olsen with ABC4. Her aunt, Amanda Gafford, says Nichole was a hard-working woman and a dedicated mother. A light in their famiy, dimmed too soon.
SLCPD say they got a call early Sunday morning about someone being shot near a nightclub in the area of 300 South and West Temple.
Officers responded to the scene. However, police say someone — possibly a friend of the — victim put her in a car and drove her to the University of Utah Hospital where she died shortly after as a result of her injuries. The suspects also reportedly got into a separate vehicle and fled the scene.
Based on information gathered by police, employees from the nightclub allegedly asked several people to leave the club.
While outside, the suspect got into an argument with the victim’s boyfriend, police say. The argument allegedly escalated, resulting in the suspect pulling out a gun and shooting the victim.
Gafford describes Nichole Olsen, more affectionately known as Nikkie Martinez as “a beautiful vibrant girl [who] didn’t deserve to have any of this happen to her.”
Olsen leaves behind a 9-year-old son, who Gafford says her niece would call “her reason for living and… her anchor.”
Gafford says the loss has taken a devastating toll on their family, as well as loved ones who know Nichole best, as she was “liked and loved by so many people.”
SLCPD says they are working to figure out the pieces of what led up to the altercation and ultimately the killing of the young woman.
The agency is asking for anyone with information or possibly cell phone footage of the incident to reach out to them.
In the meantime, Gafford says the loss of her niece to the act of violence leaves her asking the question: why?
“Why would pull out a gun and take someone’s mother, daughter or niece’s life away from them, that can’t be replaced,” says Gafford.
Nichole’s aunt says they are planning to honor her memory with candlelight vigil later this week.
Loved ones have also organized a Go Fund Me campaign to assist with memorial expenses.