Jacksonville police on Wednesday announced the arrest of a suspect in last year’s cold-blood murder of a Microsoft executive — but noted they do not believe he acted alone.
Henry Tenon, 61, has been charged with second-degree murder and other rapes for the February shooting of Jared Bridegan in front of his 2-year-old daughter.
The department did not answer questions Wednesday and declined to state a motive or if there was a personal connection between Tenon and Bridegan.
Though officials said Tenon did not act alone, they also declined to say if they had any information linking him to Shanna Gardner-Fernandez, Bridegan’s ex-wife, or her new husband Mario Fernandez, previously identified as suspects were named in the case.
“We hope to give you more answers, even if we can’t today,” Jacksonville Beach Police Chief Gene Paul Smith said.
Bridegan, 33, was driving home to St. Augustine after dropping off his two children, who he shared with Gardner-Fernandez, at their Jacksonville Beach home.
With his 2-year-old daughter Bexley in the back seat, Bridegan spotted a tire in the middle of the road and pulled over to remove it.
In what police believe was a planned ambush, a gunman fatally shot Bridegan after he got out of the SUV.
Bexley, one of two children Bridegan shared with his second wife Kirsten Bridegan, sat in the car on the deserted street for about three minutes before a passerby saw her father lying in the street and called 911.
It was later revealed that Bridegan feuded with Gardner-Fernandez over custody of their two children and that their marriage reportedly collapsed after they had an affair.
Gardner-Fernandez and her new husband staunchly denied any role in Bridegan’s murder, but most importantly hired prominent criminal defense attorney Henry Cox III shortly after the murder.
Fox News reported this week that Gardner-Fernandez, 35, recently moved to Richland, Washington, with her two children without her husband.
Sources told the outlet they have now become estranged.
She moved into a six-bedroom house that her parents, Shelli and Sterling Gardner, bought for $1 million in September, according to property records.
Shelli Sterling started a lucrative papercraft business that makes up to $100 million in sales every year, according to IncFact.
Gardner-Fernandez was once a passionate follower of her family’s Mormon faith, but reportedly left the church a few years ago.
While she has vehemently denied any role in Bridegan’s death, Gardner-Fernandez admitted to the Florida Times-Union that she once asked a tattoo parlor employee if he knew anyone who could silence her troublesome ex-husband.
But she dismissed it as nothing more than a macabre hoax, claiming that those in the midst of divorce often make casual statements of this nature.
“I feel for Jared’s family and what they are going through. I can’t even imagine it,” she told the outlet. “I tried to be respectful. I tried to give them space.”
The murdered father’s new wife, Kirsten Bridegan, has doggedly pushed for an arrest in the case as she faces the prospect of raising her two children without their doting father.
While Bexley bravely moves forward after witnessing her father’s murder, her mother told Fox News she faces an arduous emotional journey.
“It will take her a lifetime to process those feelings and the trauma of what she went through,” she said.
https://nypost.com/2023/01/25/jared-bridegan-murder-cops-annouce-arrest/ Murder of Jared Bridegan: Police officers announce arrest