The 53-year-old manager of a Las Vegas nail salon was killed on Saturday, December 29, after trying to stop a female customer from fleeing the scene without paying her $35 manicure bill.
Nhu “Annie” Nguyen was working at Crystal Nails & Spa on West Flamingo Road when a woman tried to pay for the services she had just received with a credit card, according to her boyfriend of 13 years and the man who helped her run the nail salon, Sonny Chung, reported the Las Vegas Review-Journal. He said that the woman’s credit card was swiped several times, but it kept getting declined. She then told Nguyen that she was going to get cash from her car.
Chung said that both he and Nguyen followed the woman out to the parking lot where she got into a Chevrolet Camaro that had the glass broken out of the rear windshield. Nguyen reportedly held on to the frame of the car near the trunk as the woman stepped on the gas pedal and started driving away. The manicurist fell off of the vehicle and was then dragged about 50 feet.
The manicurist was taken to University Medical Center of Southern Nevada where she was pronounced dead at 4:40 pm., reported NBC News. The Clark County coroner’s spokesperson said that the cause of her death is “multiple blunt force injuries” and it is being classified as a homicide.
“I tried to hold the car back, but I’m not Superman. She ran off for $35 and killed my wife — $35 to run my wife over,” Chung, holding back tears, told the Las Vegas Review-Journal about the woman he considered a wife even though they were not officially married.
Nguyen was the mother of three daughters between the ages of 20 and 28 and two grandchildren, a 4-year-old and a 6-year-old. Her daughters all live in California but were in Las Vegas at the time to visit their mother for the holidays.
Crystal Nails & Spa will be closed until further notice. There is a makeshift memorial outside of the store with a framed photo of Nguyen, candles, flowers, and letters.
“She was a hard worker… She’s a work addict,” Chung said, revealing that his love had devoted the last 10 years of her life to the salon, which opened at 11 a.m. and closed at 11 p.m. seven days a week. After cleaning up, the couple often didn’t get home until 2 a.m. or later.
The Metropolitan Police Department was able to find the Chevrolet Camaro at a nearby apartment complex that same night. However, officials have not yet been able to identify the suspect — a white woman in her mid-20s — because the vehicle was a rental car that had been reported stolen three weeks prior to the incident. They do not believe that the person who originally rented the Camaro is the suspect.
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