A woman was murdered at a North Attleborough shopping plaza, police said. Then authorities found the suspect dead.

Steven Fregeolle, 32, was found dead from an apparent suicide, according to officials.

Steven Fregeolle. —Bristol County District Attorney's Office

One day after a Rhode Island mother was murdered when gunshots rang out in a North Attleborough parking lot Saturday evening, authorities found the man allegedly behind the attack dead from an apparent suicide.

The body of Steven Fregeolle, 32, was discovered around 6:30 p.m. Sunday at the Francis C. Carter Memorial Preserve in Charlestown, Rhode Island, about 45 miles from the Fashion Crossing shopping plaza where he allegedly killed 37-year-old Brandi Berg, according to the Bristol County District Attorney’s Office.

Earlier Sunday, police issued an arrest warrant for Fregeolle and spent most of the day searching for the Johnston, Rhode Island, suspect after finding his abandoned vehicle near the preserve, prosecutors said.

Advertisement

North Attleborough police responded to the shooting reported at the Route 1 plaza around 6 p.m. Saturday, where they found Berg, of Riverside, Rhode Island, suffering from gunshot wounds inside her SUV, officials said.

Nearly a dozen bullets had pierced the windshield of Berg’s car, The Sun Chronicle reports.

Berg was unresponsive when first responders arrived on scene, according to authorities. She was brought to Rhode Island Hospital in Providence where she was pronounced dead shortly after 7 p.m., prosecutors said.

According to officials, an off-duty Bridgewater police officer and an off-duty Massachusetts State Police trooper were near the plaza during the shooting and followed Fregeolle, who was driving a blue Subaru, as he fled the area. The officers relayed license plate information to other units that determined the car belonged to Fregeolle, authorities said.

Officials called for the public’s help in finding Fregeolle Sunday afternoon after he was charged with murder. Police searched the preserve and surrounding area — including by helicopter — before a Narragansett officer with a police K-9, a Charlestown police officer, and a member of the Rhode Island State Police found his body, authorities said.

Investigators had discovered Fregeolle’s vehicle at the preserve around noon, along with his keys, cell phone, and identification and credit cards, prosecutors said.

Advertisement

Aside his body, officials found a black handgun. Fregeolle died from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound, officials said, although an autopsy is pending.

According to NBC 10 News, Berg had a 14-year-old daughter.

Prosecutors said Monday afternoon a preliminary investigation revealed Berg and Fregeolle used to work together at a Warwick car dealership and had a previous relationship together.

“Just prior to the shooting, (Berg) had texted her current boyfriend stating that (Fregeolle) was in the parking lot and had confronted her about seeing someone else,” a statement from the district attorney’s office says.

Authorities said Fregeolle had recently been messaging Berg frequently and “was displaying obsessive behavior towards her.”

“He had allegedly been contacting her friends and family to learn her whereabouts and sent several desperate text messages to the victim,” the statement says.

Authorities said Fregeolle was the sole suspect in the case. An autopsy for Berg is pending, and the investigation remains ongoing.