Lawrence Man Indicted for Murder in Fatal Shooting on Worcester State University Campus; Two Men Indicted on Related Robbery, Shooting Charges

December 21, 2023

For Immediate Release

Contact: Scott J. Croteau 508-368-7228 or 774-418-5706

WORCESTER – A Lawrence man was indicted on a murder charge in connection with the October fatal shooting of a 19-year-old man on the Worcester State University campus, according to Worcester County District Attorney Joseph D. Early, Jr.

Kevin Rodriguez, 18, was indicted by a Worcester County Grand Jury on Wednesday. He will be arraigned on Jan. 12, 2024, in Worcester Superior Court on charges of murder, possession of a loaded firearm not at home or work and possession of a firearm not at home or work.

Worcester State University Police responded to a shooting scene around 2:30 a.m. on Oct. 28. Two men were found with gunshot wounds, and both were taken to area hospitals.

A 19-year-old man, identified as Randy Armando Melendez Jr. of Southbridge, died from his injuries. The second victim, a 21-year-old man, survived but was left paralyzed from the waist down.

Authorities said the shootings occurred during a confrontation between two groups of people who were visiting the university campus. Neither the victims nor the defendants were students at the university.

Richard Nieves, 19, of Spencer, and Kenneth Doelter, 20, of Southbridge, are both accused of robbing the 21-year-old man before he was shot.

Doelter and Nieves were both indicted on charges of armed robbery and aggravated kidnapping. Nieves, who is accused of shooting the surviving victim, was also indicted on charges of armed assault with intent to murder, assault and battery with a dangerous weapon causing serious bodily injury, discharging a firearm within 500 feet of a dwelling, possession of a loaded firearm not at home or work and possession of a firearm not at home or work.

Both men will be arraigned in Worcester Superior Court on a future date.

Worcester Police, Worcester State University Police, Massachusetts State Police, Massachusetts State Police Crime Scene Services – Central, Massachusetts Firearms Identification Section and Massachusetts State Police Detectives assigned to the Worcester County District Attorney’s Office continue to investigate.

Assistant District Attorneys Terry McLaughlin, Lina Pashou and Timothy Westerman are prosecuting the cases.

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