Mesa man suspected of grandmother's murder arrested in Florida

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Reginald Gardner, 43, was arrested in Miami in connection with the murder of his grandmother in Mesa. By Andrew Michalscheck Reginald Gardner, 43, was arrested in Miami in connection with the murder of his grandmother in Mesa. By Andrew Michalscheck
Lola Pershall, 88, was found dead in her Mesa home on April 18. By Andrew Michalscheck Lola Pershall, 88, was found dead in her Mesa home on April 18. By Andrew Michalscheck
By Mike Gertzman By Mike Gertzman
Reginald Gardner III By Jennifer Thomas Reginald Gardner III By Jennifer Thomas
Reginald Gardner III By Jennifer Thomas Reginald Gardner III By Jennifer Thomas

MESA, Ariz. -- An East Mesa man suspected of killing his grandmother has been arrested in Miami, Florida. Authorities apprehended Reginald Gardner Jr. last Friday as he walked through a Miami neighborhood. 

Gardner’s grandmother, Lola Pershall, was found dead inside her home on April 18 after a family member called the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office to say they hadn’t been able to get in contact with Pershall. 

Deputies arrived to discover that the 88-year-old woman had been shot. Pershall and Gardner lived together, but neither Gardner nor Pershall’s car was anywhere to be found. 

Pershall’s vehicle was eventually located on April 19 in Houston, Texas. Authorities were able to tie Gardner to his grandmother’s death, and tracked him all the way to Florida. 

“Our detectives did an excellent job investigating this brutal crime which underscores the problems we face with domestic violence,” Sheriff Joe Arpaio said.

Gardner is currently in custody in Miami and is waiting to be extradited back to Arizona. He will face charges of second degree murder.