Garcia murder suspect hunt goes beyond CA

September 16, 2008 8:04:44 PM PDT
The hunt for the man police say shot and killed Fairfield City Councilman Matt Garcia has expanded beyond California. This comes as the Solano County prosecutor announced his office needs more time to consider charges against the two people already in custody.

One of two suspects arrested in the murder of Fairfield City Councilman Matt Garcia, Nicole Stewart, may soon be out of jail. She is pregnant and due to give birth in the coming weeks. Once described by police as the "getaway driver" in this case, prosecutors are now examining Stewart's role, if any, in Matt Garcia's murder.

"I've concluded that more time is necessary before a filing decision can be made," said Solano County District Attorney David Paulson.

Paulson announced Stewart and second suspect Gene Allen Combs would not be arraigned on murder, conspiracy and weapons charges in a Fairfield courtroom, as expected.

"I have decided to re-arrest both Mr. Combs and Ms. Stewart. This will extend the time by which a filing decision must be made until Thursday afternoon at 1:30," said Paulson.

Combs now faces a single charge of murder. Stewart has a single felony charge of being an accessory after the fact to Garcia's murder. Her bail is set at $10,000.

"There's some relief," said Bryan Stewart, Nicole Stewart's ex-husband.

"I know this person, known her for 17 years and I know there's not a bone in her body that's bad," said Bryan Stewart.

Investigators still believe Nicole Stewart and Combs were in the car with a third man, Henry Don Williams the night Garcia was killed. Police say Williams was the shooter.

"Matt Garcia is an absolutely innocent victim at the wrong place at the wrong time. He did absolutely nothing wrong," said Paulson.

Police are still searching for Williams, who has a prior felony conviction in San Bernardino County for violently resisting arrest. His Dodge Intrepid was found in Berkeley over the weekend.

"I have no reason to believe he's left the country, but we do have some information to believe he's left the state of California," said Paulson.

Matt Garcia was not the intended victim in this shooting. The prosecutor elaborated that they have actually interviewed and spoken with the intended victim. They said he is a man with connections to where the shooting occurred, but that he looks nothing like Matt Garcia.


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