America Mafalda Thayer was found beheaded in Shakopee, Minnesota, on Wednesday. Police said the incident occurred during the day southwest of downtown Minneapolis. Authorities have since arrested Thayer’s longtime boyfriend, Alex Saborit. As of Friday morning, a motive was still unclear.
It’s unclear whether there were witnesses of the daytime execution, however, Shakopee officers responded to a report of a stabbing incident in the neighborhood. When they arrived at the intersection of Fourth Avenue and Spencer Street, they found 55-year-old America Mafalda Thayer dead on the sidewalk.
The victim reportedly suffered from “stab wounds,” according to a press release. The Shakopee police department said that “she was pronounced dead at the scene.”
“Officers quickly apprehended 42-year-old Alexis Saborit of Shakopee on suspicion of second-degree murder,” it said in the press release. “He is being held in the Scott County Jail pending charges.”
Investigators discovered a large knife in a nearby alleyway, though it hasn’t been determined if the knife belonged to the suspect and if it was used in the killing. Police “believe the suspect knew the victim and this wasn’t a random act,” according to the news release.
Officers arrested Thayer’s 42-year-old boyfriend for second-degree murder, though charges were still pending as of Friday morning. Police did not reveal why Alexis Saborit is a suspect. A motive has not been identified by the police. It was reported that “the Minnesota BCA processed the crime scene,” and the Shakopee Police Department is still investigating the beheading.
Thayer’s co-workers explained that the victim was in a long-term relationship with Alexis Saborit. They revealed that the suspect was abusive throughout the relationship. It was also reported that Saborit was previously convicted of a gross misdemeanor domestic assault, though it’s unclear if the conviction was related to Thayer.
America Mafalda Thayer was a dedicated employee and kindhearted person, according to her co-workers. She worked at the Dollar Tree and My Pillow, clocking in over 70 hours per week. She was a Cuban immigrant, sources revealed. Her co-workers also said she was hardworking, kind, and warm.
Walker Martinez and Tori Finney – both friends of the deceased – organized a vigil Thursday evening in honor of America Mafalda Thayer. The vigil was held at the place where she was beheaded, at the intersection of Fourth Avenue and Spencer Street.
“She was a really kind person who deserved better than this,” Finney admitted of their friend. Martinez explained that Thayer “was always really sweet” and that “she was so kind-hearted and down to earth. She was a loving person.”
“I knew her pretty well,” said Jamie Worley, Thayer’s co-worker at My Pillow. “We didn’t hang out but when I say she liked to work, she was putting in 70 hours a week. She would basically go there all day, go home for a little bit and come back.”
Worley explained that “I went there today and went to the store and got her a rose and a teddy bear to put on her desk. When I got there I didn’t even look at any other of my co-workers. I just stood at her desk with my head down. Everyone was just crying. It was a very emotional day and it still is.”
Nicky Kendrick, another friend of Thayer’s, said “she was soft-spoken, so funny, and always had amazing stories.” She always went out of her way to say hi to me when she saw me. She was just truly the kindest to everyone. I haven’t met anyone as genuinely kind as America was since my late grandma.”
Kendrick admitted that she was shocked by the killing. She said she “had no idea it was her at first, and then a mutual friend messaged me and it all clicked.” Kendrick admitted she was “devastated” by Thayer’s death and explained that “it’s unreal and I just have no words.”