Attempted murder-suicide at a Fresno hotel unravels

FRESNO, Calif.

Fresno police say Arturo Ruelas, 55, shot his girlfriend before turning the gun on himself. Ruelas died at the scene, his girlfriend is in serious condition in the hospital.

The shooting happened at University Inn Wednesday night, across the street from Fresno State.

Hotel manager Raul Torres was getting ready to go home Wednesday night when the phone rang. "She said she was dying."

The woman asked for help in Spanish, describing what had happened inside the hotel room just 15 minutes after she and her boyfriend had checked in.

Torres said, "That she'd been shot and the guy she was with shot himself."

He immediately called 911, and then realized the call came from the room Arturo Ruelas had rented.

Ruelas is a man they'd seen regularly since September; the guest who would bring his staff oranges.

"He was pretty humble," said Torres. "Lively, smiling, never thought he would do something like that, we were all surprised he did something like that."

Police describe the incident as a lover's quarrel. They're still trying to figure out what the fight was actually about. The victim claims that Ruelas shot her and then himself. He died instantly.

Emergency responders had to kick in the hotel room door to get to the victim, who was quickly able to tell her side of the story before being rushed into surgery.

Torres says he's worked hard to make the hotel a good place to stay and that never has something like this happened at University Inn.

"We have not had any events like this," said Torres. "This is an isolated incident I can assure everybody will be okay in this hotel."

Police say they're trying to confirm the woman's story, but at this point they don't believe there are any other suspects.

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