An 18-year-old man, William Innes, pleaded not guilty to murder after being accused of killing a homeless woman with a pellet gun. Innes allegedly sent a message to a group chat prior to the shooting, stating, “I’m going hobo hunting with a pellet gun.” The victim was shot multiple times and died three days later. Innes and his co-defendant, Ryan Hopkins, remain in custody without bail. Hopkins is due back in court to contest his bail status. Innes’ defense attorney argued that the message was sent 12 hours after the shooting. City News Service reported
An 18-year-old man, William Innes, has entered a plea of not guilty to the charge of murder after allegedly killing a 68-year-old homeless woman in Serra Mesa. The victim, Annette Pershal, was found unconscious on May 8th and later succumbed to her injuries in the hospital. Innes’ co-defendant, Ryan Hopkins, faces an assault with a deadly weapon charge for allegedly driving Innes to the scene of the crime. Both defendants were arrested last week.
During the court proceedings, the Deputy District Attorney, Roza Egiazarian, revealed that Innes had sent a message to a group chat, including Hopkins, just minutes before the shooting. The message reportedly stated, “I’m going hobo hunting with a pellet gun.” The prosecutor claimed that Innes and Hopkins then went to the location of Pershal’s encampment on Sandrock Road, where Innes fired multiple rounds at the victim from their car. Pershal endured gunshot wounds to her head, leg, and torso, with one pellet causing fatal damage to her aorta.
A search of Innes’ residence resulted in the discovery of a Gamo Shadow Whisper air rifle, believed to be the weapon used in the crime. The motive behind the shooting remains unknown, and police have not disclosed the details leading to the identification of Innes and Hopkins as suspects.
Both defendants are currently being held without bail. However, Hopkins is scheduled for another hearing on Thursday to contest his bail status. His defense attorney, Vikas Bajaj, argued for bail to be set at $25,000 but acknowledged that Judge Daniel Goldstein’s decision to keep his client in custody without bail was not surprising, given the seriousness of the case and the murder charge against Innes. Bajaj expressed his intention to present arguments on Thursday for Hopkins’ release under specific conditions.
The tragic incident has garnered significant attention, and the court proceedings continue to unfold, shedding light on the shocking nature of the crime allegedly committed by the defendants..