MURDER IN BENTON

(UPDATED 2-23-21)

The deceased have been identified as Elizabeth Ann Copeland, 58, of Benton. In custody, arrested on suspicion of homicide is William Ralph Wilson, 65, of Benton.

(From Mono County Sheriff’s Office 2-20-21)

“On February 19, 2021, at 9:33 p.m., Mono County Sheriff’s Office (MCSO) Dispatch received a call regarding a Domestic Violence in the Benton area. MCSO deputies and California Highway Patrol (CHP) Bishop officers quickly responded to the residence, where they found evidence of forced entry and a struggle.

However, no one was inside the residence or on the property. After an extensive search of the surrounding area, law enforcement located the male suspect’s vehicle at a residence in Hammil Valley.

The female victim was located in the vehicle, clearly deceased. The suspect barricaded himself in a motorhome on the property.

The Inyo/Mono Special Enforcement Detail (SED) responded, along with assistance from CHP-Bishop and their H-40 Helicopter, Inyo Sheriff’s Office, and Bishop Police Department. Mono County Paramedics and White Mountain Fire Medic 4 staged at a safe distance for any potential injuries.

Entry was made into the motorhome by the SED Tactical Team, where they located the suspect attempting to conceal himself. The suspect was arrested without incident and is now in custody in the Mono County Jail.

The names of the victim and the suspect will not be released until the victim’s next of kin have been notified. This is an open and active investigation. Additional details will be released as they become available, provided the investigation will not be compromised.”