Crime, Fire + Courts

Winters murder suspect allegedly caught with weapon

By From page A1 | February 14, 2014


William Carl Gardner III. Courtesy photo

The man accused of gunning down his former girlfriend in downtown Winters may face additional charges after allegedly being caught with a makeshift weapon inside the Yolo County Jail.

William Carl Gardner III was arrested “in house” on Jan. 16 after jail staff found a sharp object in his possession, said Capt. Robin Faille, the jail’s commander. Faille said an object from within the jail had been fashioned into a weapon, but she did not have more specific details about what that object was.

However, the incident resulted in Gardner being arrested on charges of being a prisoner in possession of a weapon and being a prisoner who manufactures or attempts to manufacture a weapon, Faille said.

No additional charges had been filed in Yolo Superior Court as of Thursday. The Yolo County District Attorney’s Office declined to comment on the incident.

A preliminary hearing for Gardner, 30, was set today for March 26 in connection with the Nov. 18, 2013, death of Leslie Pinkston, who was shot while sitting in her car outside her Railroad Avenue workplace. He later fled to Las Vegas but was apprehended by the U.S. Marshals Service three weeks after the shooting.

The Sacramento man also has a pending stalking and criminal threats case stemming from an incident that occurred in January 2013 at the home Pinkston shared with her mother.

Gardner has pleaded not guilty to the charges, which include the special circumstance allegation of murder by means of lying in wait. Prosecutors have not yet determined whether they will seek the death penalty in the homicide case.

— Reach Lauren Keene at [email protected] or 530-747-8048. Follow her on Twitter at @laurenkeene

Lauren Keene

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