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'Microsoft Exec Jared Bridegan Murder: Ex-Wife Arrested After 18-Month Investigation'

Ex-wife of slain Microsoft exec arrested for his murder 18 months after his death in front of their daughter.

In a shocking turn of events, Shanna Gardner-Fernandez, the ex-wife of the late Microsoft executive Jared Bridegan, has been arrested for his murder. This arrest comes more than 18 months after Bridegan was tragically shot to death in front of his young daughter. Melissa Nelson, the state attorney for Jacksonville's Fourth Judicial District, made the announcement, revealing that Gardner-Fernandez has been charged with first-degree murder, conspiracy to commit first-degree murder, and child endangerment.

Nelson was joined by Jacksonville Beach Police Chief Gene Paul Smith and ATF Special Agent Bob Bryson, emphasizing the gravity of the situation. The authorities did not disclose the specific details of the new evidence that led to Gardner-Fernandez's indictment. She was apprehended in Washington State, where she had been residing.

This is not the first arrest in connection with Bridegan's murder. Mario Fernandez, the husband of Bridegan's ex-wife, and Henry Tenon, his former tenant, were previously indicted for their alleged involvement in the killing. Bridegan, a 33-year-old software developer for Microsoft, was fatally shot on February 16, 2022, in an affluent suburb of Jacksonville Beach. The incident occurred when he stopped his car after encountering a tire placed in the middle of the road. As he stepped out to move it, he was mercilessly shot multiple times in front of his daughter, Bexley, who was securely strapped in her car seat.

Court documents reveal that several bullets narrowly missed Bexley within the confines of the vehicle. Bridegan had just dropped off his twins, whom he shared with Gardner-Fernandez, at her residence and was on his way back to his own home, where his second wife, Kirsten Bridegan, and their infant daughter, London, awaited his return.

Despite divorcing in 2015, Bridegan and Gardner-Fernandez continued to engage in legal battles over financial matters and custody of their twins. Following the murder, Gardner-Fernandez sought the representation of a prominent criminal defense attorney. Amid growing public scrutiny, she relocated over 2,800 miles away to the Pacific Northwest, cutting off contact between the twins and their half-sisters, Bexley and London.

Gardner-Fernandez's parents, prominent members of the Mormon community and owners of a multimillion-dollar papercraft company, secretly purchased a $1 million home for her in West Richland, Washington. This move raised eyebrows and intensified suspicions surrounding her involvement in the case.

Henry Tenon, aged 61, was arrested weeks later. It was revealed that he had been a tenant in a property owned by Fernandez. Tenon admitted to shooting Bridegan and cooperated with authorities, providing information against Fernandez as part of a plea agreement. The investigation further progressed with the arrest of Gardner-Fernandez's estranged husband in Orlando in March. Prosecutors allege that Fernandez conspired with Tenon for a minimum of six weeks to orchestrate the cold-blooded killing, leaving four children without their father.

A staff member at a tattoo parlor disclosed that Gardner-Fernandez had inquired about finding someone to "shut him [Bridegan] up" shortly before their divorce. Gardner-Fernandez later admitted to making this statement in an interview with a local newspaper but vehemently denied any involvement in her ex-husband's death.

Bridegan's widow, who shares Bexley and London with him, has tirelessly fought for justice, ensuring that every individual involved in her husband's murder is held accountable. She expressed her determination, stating, "We have fought hard for the truth. We know there's still a long way to go before all of those responsible are truly held accountable."

Fernandez now faces charges of first-degree murder, conspiracy to commit first-degree murder, and child abuse. As the investigation unfolds, more details may emerge, shedding light on the tragic events that unfolded on that fateful day in February 2022.

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