Deadly Beginning to New Year

Pixley, California The death of her husband has church members gathering to console her and sheriff's deputies looking for his killer.

The homicide happened in the small town of Pixley.

One neighbor says first there were gunshots, and then 73- year old Marcaria Espinoza came running to her for help, saying somebody had shot her husband, Feliciano, inside the elderly couple's home on South Market Street.

"She said Don Feliciano had just come out of the shower. Somebody knocked on the door, and they opened the door two guys with masks came in and started shooting him," recalls the neighbor.

Investigators say the 72-year old Espinoza died of a gunshot to the upper body.

Today, still in shock, members of the nearby church gathered to reach out to the wife of the elderly man some called "Chano."

While the Espinoza's were not members they did take part in weekly bible readings and often opened their home to strangers.

Isaias Tineo, Church Pastor, says "She has a big heart. She has a lot of people if they don't have a house. They invite them to stay with them."

In early December, neighbors say one of those strangers, apparently struck out at Chano who was very protective of his wife.

Pat Allgood, Victim's Friend, says "She has somewhat limited capacity mentally. So he was very defensive of her. This man over stepped what you might call propriety, Chano called him out on it. And he hit Chano."

At this point, the county sheriff's department will only say this case is in its' early stages. The search for suspects continues.

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