A fugitive in a homicide, Jason Bolton, has been arrested by the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Department. Bolton is believed to be connected to the disappearance and murder of 57-year-old Wendy Lee Pullins, an Ahwahnee resident who went missing in June 2022.
Wendy Pullins, a mother of three and grandmother of nine, was last seen on June 14, 2022, in Mariposa County. She had driven her recently purchased red Jeep Cherokee to Mariposa to register the vehicle at the DMV and decided to stay overnight with an acquaintance to save on gas. Her last communication was a text message to her sister, indicating that she couldn’t return home and would come back the following day.
On September 9, 2022, the Mariposa County Sheriff’s Office located Wendy Pullins’ Jeep Cherokee down a steep embankment in a remote area of Mariposa County. Detectives and the California Department of Justice Crime Lab processed the vehicle and found blood inside that matched Pullins’ DNA. At that point the Mariposa Sheriff’s Department stated that they were treating the case as a homicide.
By late October, law enforcement indicated they were searching for Bolton in connection with Pullins’ presumed homicide.
On November 13, 2023, the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office received information from the California Department of Justice Fugitive Apprehension Team regarding the wanted fugitive, Jason Bolton, who was believed to be in Mendocino County.
To apprehend Bolton, the Mendocino/Lake Multi-Agency Regional S.W.A.T. Team was activated. Bolton was observed entering the passenger side of a vehicle in Willits, which was subsequently intercepted by the S.W.A.T. Team on Blosser Lane. Despite numerous verbal commands to exit the vehicle, Bolton refused to comply. Law enforcement deployed a K9 unit, which assisted in taking Bolton into custody without further incident.
Jason Bolton was transported and booked into the Mendocino County Jail on a felony murder arrest warrant pending extradition to Mariposa County. The Mariposa County Sheriff’s Office is the lead investigating agency in this case.
Below is the press release from the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Department regarding the arrest. Below that is a statement from the Mariposa County Sheriff also.
In early November 2023, the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office was contacted by the California Department of Justice Fugitive Apprehension Team regarding a wanted subject, (Justin Bolton) believed to be in Mendocino County.
Sheriff’s Office personnel were informed Bolton was a wanted fugitive out of Mariposa County (California) related to an active homicide investigation.
After being contacted, members of the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office and the Mendocino Major Crimes Task Force began to assist in identifying Bolton’s whereabouts in Mendocino County.
On 11-13-2023, Bolton’s whereabouts were determined to be in Willits.
Based on the nature of the investigation and information known, the Mendocino/Lake Multi- Agency Regional S.W.A.T. Team was activated to assist in the apprehension of Bolton.
At approximately 12:24 PM, Bolton was observed entering the passenger side of a vehicle on Della Avenue in Willits, which subsequently left the location. The vehicle was followed onto Blosser Lane, where it was intercepted by several members of the S.W.A.T. Team who performed a high-risk enforcement stop.
The driver of the vehicle, later determined to be a family member of Bolton, exited after he was given verbal commands to do so.
Bolton, seated in the passenger seat, was also given verbal commands to exit the vehicle but he refused to comply. Several more verbal commands to Bolton were given, which he ignored.
A Sheriff’s Office K9 was deployed into the vehicle to assist in taking Bolton into custody. Bolton had to be physically removed from the vehicle and was ultimately taken into custody without further incident.
Bolton was subsequently transported and booked into the Mendocino County Jail on a felony murder arrest warrant pending extradition to Mariposa County.
The Mariposa County Sheriff’s Office is the investigating agency which resulted in the issuance of the felony arrest warrant.