Whitmore felon arrested after “brutally” violent attack leaves wife with brain injury

WHITMORE, Calif., — Authorities say a Whitmore man, already a convicted felon from a prior domestic violence-related case, was arrested after a violent attack that left his wife hospitalized with a traumatic brain injury and other serious injuries early Monday evening, Jan. 3.

The violent encounter, which happened at a private residence in the 3100 block of Whitmore Road, northeast of Millville, led to a short standoff after the alleged suspect told his daughter he was going to kill his wife and any responding law enforcement officers. He also allegedly fired a weapon as the terrified woman was fleeing the scene with her two young children, according to officials.


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Shasta County sheriff’s deputies were dispatched to the home around 5:20 p.m. after Faith Wilding called 911 to report that her father, 50-year-old Lance Hunt Wilding, had “brutally assaulted” her mother, Shasta County Sheriff’s Sergeant Jose Gonzalez has since said of the incident and arrest.

Faith told SHASCOM emergency dispatchers that her father had ripped all the phone lines from the wall preventing her from reporting the violent attack, Gonzalez explained.

Fearing for her safety and the safety of her children, Faith fled from the home with her kids but heard a single gunshot come from the residence as she was leaving.

“Faith had last seen her mother laying on the couch severely beaten and now feared she had been killed,” the Sergeant continued; saying the mother and children fled to a nearby store where she called 911.

Already a convicted felon from a prior domestic violence case, 50-year-old Lance Wilding of Whitmore, was arrested after officials say he “brutally assaulted” his wife, leaving her with a traumatic brain injury on Monday, say officials. Shasta County Sheriff’s Office photo

Responding deputies met Faith at the store, where she told them her father had a large cache of firearms in the house as well as numerous cases of ammunition.

“Faith said most of the guns are normally kept in her father’s bedroom, but he’d begun staging guns around the house in what appeared to be preparation for a violent encounter with law enforcement,” Gonzalez went on to say. “Faith also said her father was talking about placing propane tanks around the yard so he could shoot the tanks and blow them up when officers were near them.”

Deputies, along with a Cal Fire law enforcement officer, responded to the house where they established a perimeter and began using a patrol vehicle’s public address system to order Lance from the home.

He reportedly exited the home after about ten minutes, where he was taken into custody without incident.

Once Lance was secured deputies entered the home, where they found the victim with “severe bruising to her face and neck,” described Gonzalez.

Medical personnel were brought in to assess the victim’s injuries and determined she was suffering from a traumatic brain injury and she was rushed to an area hospital for treatment. Her name and age have not been released.

“During a subsequent search of the house, deputies found numerous firearms, many of which were in Lance’s bedroom as Faith had described,” according to Gonzalez; who added that the bedroom door did not lock, and the loaded firearms were out in the open and accessible to Faith’s young son who slept in the next room.

Other loaded firearms were found staged near the front windows of the home and deputies also located and seized several thousand rounds of ammunition and numerous high-capacity magazines that were found throughout the house.

During a related search of a barn located on the rural property, deputies discovered another handgun, along with several boxes containing thousands of rounds of ammunition of various calibers.

Based on their investigative findings, deputies transported Lance to the Shasta County Jail in Redding where he was booked on suspicion of attempted murder, domestic violence, multiple counts of being a felon in possession of a firearm, being a felon in possession of ammunition, destroying a 911 communication device, criminal threats, child endangerment, and possession of large-capacity magazines.

Online jail records indicate he remains in custody in lieu of $500,000 bail or bond.

Anyone with further information related to this investigation is encouraged to contact SHASCOM at (530) 245-6540. Callers can refer to incident file number 22S000256 and can remain anonymous.

Contact the writer: [email protected]

Trevor Montgomery, 50, moved in 2017 to the Intermountain area of Shasta County from Riverside County and runs Riverside County News Source (RCNS) and Shasta County News Source (SCNS).

Additionally, he writes or has written for several other news organizations; including Riverside County based newspapers Valley News, Valley Chronicle, Anza Valley Outlook, and Hemet & San Jacinto Chronicle; the Bonsall/Fallbrook Village News in San Diego County; and Mountain Echo in Shasta County. He is also a regular contributor to Thin Blue Line TV and Law Enforcement News Network and has had his stories featured on news stations throughout the Southern California and North State regions.

Trevor spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg, breaking his back, and suffering both spinal cord and brain injuries in an off-duty accident. (Click here to see segment of Discovery Channel documentary of Trevor’s accident.)

During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations; including Robert Presley Detention Center, Southwest Station in Temecula, Hemet/Valle Vista Station, Ben Clark Public Safety Training Center, and Lake Elsinore Station; along with other locations.

Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team, and Personnel/Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.

Trevor has been married for more than 30 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and his “fluid family” includes 13 children and 18 grandchildren.