A 63-year woman who was struck in the head with a baseball bat in a shopping parking lot has died from her injuries, Fairfield police said Friday, and now, detectives are working to seek to file homicide charges in what they're calling a brazen case.
Cheryl Ann Sherwood of Suisun City was hit from behind with the bat on Wednesday while walking to her car at Solano Town Center, as a young man snatched her purse, police said. She died at 6 a.m. Friday and became Fairfield’s first homicide of 2016.
Sherwood worked as an oncology nurse at Kaiser's clinic in Walnut Creek, according to her stepson, Randy Sherwood.
"It's been an absolute gut-wrenching, heart-wrenching situation," he said. "She's an amazing individual, and I'm going to miss her very much."
Fairfield police detectives learned from nearby Vallejo police that they had arrested William David King, 19, of Vallejo during a traffic stop for a "violent crime" that had occurred on Tuesday. Sherwood's purse was found during this stop, police said.
The "violent attack" was was reported at a Wells Fargo bank Tuesday morning when a suspect struck a 37-year-old woman with a hammer as she was walking back to her car, the Vallejo Times Herald reported.
King was initially booked Wednesday on robbery, attempted murder and mayhem charges. Detectives are working with the Solano County District Attorney’s Office to upgrade King’s charges to homicide.
"This was a bold, brazen and random crime of opportunity," Fairfield police Lt. Rob Lenke said in a statement, adding the department's "thoughts and prayers" are with Sherwood's family.
Police added they will increasing patrols of the area in and around the Solano Town Center in an effort to deter criminal activity.