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Man charged with murder in co-worker's death outside California Tesla plant, police say

Fremont police said homicide investigators have taken over the investigation.
Image: Tesla's primary vehicle factory reopens in Fremont
Workers outside Tesla's primary vehicle factory in Fremont, Calif., on May 12, 2020. Police are investigating a homicide outside the factory.Stephen Lam / Reuters

A co-worker shot and killed an employee at a California Tesla plant Monday after an argument earlier in the day, police said.

Fremont police said in a statement that first responders were called to the Tesla building just before 3:30 p.m. Monday.

The victim, who has not been publicly identified, was pronounced dead at the scene, police said.

Police said the victim was shot in the parking lot after having finished a shift at the factory.

Detectives arrested a 29-year-old man who worked with the victim. The man was booked into jail on a homicide warrant.

He was formally charged Thursday with murder and possession of an assault weapon, police said.

The man had a loaded .223 caliber short-barrel rifle in his vehicle, the same caliber as shell casings found at the scene, police said.

Police said the suspect and victim had been arguing earlier in the day and that the suspect had suddenly walked off the job.

Officials did not disclose the relationship between the suspect and victim.

Tesla did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

On its website, Tesla describes its factory in Fremont as "one of the world's most advanced automotive plants" with 5.3 million square feet of manufacturing and office space across 370 acres of land.

As many as 10,000 employees work at the factory, according to the electric vehicle manufacturer.

Tesla is headed by Elon Musk, who was named Time magazine's Person of the Year for 2021 on Monday.