Murder suspect fights extradition to Douglas County |

Murder suspect fights extradition to Douglas County

by Sheila Gardner

It could be up to three months before murder suspect Jeanine Mona Escandon returns to Nevada to answer a charge that she shot a 59-year-old Topaz Ranch Estates man to death.

Douglas County authorities were advised that Escandon, 38, is fighting extradition to Douglas County where she is charged with murder with the use of a firearm or other deadly weapon.

She is accused of shooting Norman Welch in the back of the head. His body was found Nov. 15. Authorities believe he could have been dead up to two weeks.

Chief Criminal Deputy District Attorney Tom Gregory said the process involves extensive paperwork in obtaining governor’s warrants to secure Escandon’s return to Douglas County.

“All the state has to show is proof that she is the person named in the warrant, not that she committed the crime,” Gregory said.

Escandon will remain in custody in Los Angeles where she is being held on $1 million bail during the process.

Escandon was arrested Nov. 18 at her brother’s residence in Los Angeles after she allegedly fled Douglas County in Welch’s vehicle.

According to court documents, she reportedly admitted shooting Welch but said it was an accident.

The criminal complaint alleges she acted “deliberately and with malice aforethought.”

According to court records, a neighbor told investigators he and his son heard Welch and Escandon arguing on Nov. 1 at the TRE home.

Escandon reportedly called Yerington Mental Health on Nov. 1 where she was undergoing treatment and said she was moving back to Los Angeles.

An expended 9 mm shell casing was on the floor near Welch’s body. He had a wound in the back of his head consistent with a bullet hole, and the autopsy revealed what appeared to be a 9 mm bullet.

Investigators went to Escandon’s brother’s address in Los Angeles and found her hiding in a closet.

Escandon reportedly told investigators she and Welch had argued and she hitchhiked to Los Angeles to get away from his abusive behavior.

When confronted about the missing vehicle, she reportedly admitted she stole the car.

She said on the day of the shooting, which was not specified, she and Welch were painting the residence and got into an argument before he lay down on a couch.

Escandon reportedly told authorities she retrieved a handgun from the couch cushions and began walking around the house handling the firearm.

She said she didn’t realize it was loaded or that the hammer of the gun was back and cocked.

Escandon said when she was near the couch, the gun discharged and a bullet struck Welch in the head as he lay on the couch.

Escandon said she panicked, grabbed Welch’s car keys and drove to State Route 208, headed for Yerington. The woman said she changed her mind and drove to Los Angeles, tossing the gun out the window at an undisclosed location.