Friday, March 23, 2012
"FRESNO, CA — Two men died Thursday night in a murder-suicide that was sparked by a long-standing dispute over one man's dog getting into the other man's yard at their northwest Fresno condominium complex.
"Frank Cardoza, 59, was shot dead near his condo at the gated Bullard West complex around 5:30 p.m., Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer said.
"The gunman, Dan Andersen, 74, was found dead in his car near a River Park eatery barely an hour later. He shot himself as police closed in, Dyer said.
"The dog, which might have been a collie, had gone into Andersen's yard many times, upsetting him greatly, the chief said.
"`This is a tragedy that doesn't make any sense,` Dyer said.
"The dispute had been going on for about five years and escalated Thursday afternoon into a physical altercation in Cardoza's yard, Dyer said.
"Cardoza tried to end the fight by pinning Andersen to the ground and attempting to calm him down. Andersen seemed to settle down and went to his home but returned with a gun, the chief said.
"When Cardoza went outside his condo, Andersen shot him in the leg, prompting Cardoza's wife to open their front door. Cardoza told her to close the door and stay inside. Andersen then shot Cardoza in the back of the head, Dyer said. Cardoza was apparently shot three times. It was unclear where the third shot hit. Police found him dead in front of his condo.
"Andersen then drove off in a maroon Acura but was tracked by police to River Park, where they found him near Romano's Macaroni Grill and tried to block him in, Dyer said.
"As officers converged, Andersen put the gun in his mouth and pulled the trigger, Dyer said."