(KCRA) Winters police: Suspect to be charged in death of Winters woman

Dec 10, 2013 3:56 PM

By Michelle Schultz, KCRA News

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KCRA) —U.S. marshals arrested a man wanted in the death of a Winters woman after a nearly seven-hour standoff in Las Vegas Monday night.

The Winters Police Department was notified by the U.S. Marshals Service that William Gardner III was taken into custody after he surrendered to officers at an apartment complex around 12:45 a.m. Tuesday.

Marshals said the suspect involved in the Las Vegas standoff was Gardner, the man accused of shooting his ex-girlfriend to death in Winters several weeks ago.

The Sin City standoff started about 6 p.m. at the Camden Apartments complex, 4800 E. Tropicana Ave., near Mountain Vista Street, NBC reports. Some people nearby were evacuated from their units.

Officials said Gardner barricaded himself in the apartment. A woman and a small child were also inside, but are now safe.

Winters police said Gardner was hiding out with friends in the Las Vegas area. Marshals said information that was given to them led them to the suspect.

Gardner was sought in the death of Leslie Pinkston, a mother killed in downtown Winters on Nov. 18, officers said. The shooting took place about 9:30 a.m. in the 300 block of Railroad Avenue, less than a block away from two well-known restaurants, the Buckhorn and Putah Creek Cafe.

Police said Pinkston, 32, was sitting in the driver's seat of a parked, black, BMW SUV when she was apparently ambushed.

The search for the gunman also prompted Winters-area schools to go on lockdown.

It is unclear what Gardner was doing in Las Vegas or where he was during the three weeks he was on the run from police.

"I personally notified Leslie's mother last night after we had the news of (Gardner's) capture to inform her that he was in custody," said Winters police Chief Sergio Gutierrez. "She stated to me that she was able to sleep now, being at ease because of that."

Winters police said Gardner will be charged with murder in Pinkston's death. Arrangements for Gardner to be extradited to the Yolo County Jail are being made, Chief Sergio Gutierrez said in press conference Tuesday.

The earliest Gardner is expected to return to Yolo County is within the next two to three days.



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