UPDATED: Fort Calhoun homicide suspect booked, arraigned in Washington County


William Collins is now in custody at the Washington County Jail after being extradited from Galveston County in Texas.

Collins arrived at the jail around 5:15 p.m. Thursday evening, according to Sheriff Mike Robinson.

Collins, 30, was arrested in Texas after being identified for killing of Linda Childers, 71, at her home in Fort Calhoun. Collins was located after a tip from an individual from Indiana reported he had confessed to killing Childers. He was also found with her car.

A warrant was issued to extradite Collins back to Nebraska, and he is charged with first-degree murder, a Class 1 felony; two counts of possession of a deadly/dangerous weapon by a prohibited person, a Class 1D and 3 felony; two counts of use of a deadly weapon to commit a felony, a Class 2 felony; first-degree assault, a Class 2 felony; burglary, a Class 2A felony; stolen firearm, a Class 2A felony; and theft by unlawful taking, a Class 2A felony.

First-degree murder is punishable by death in the state of Nebraska.

Collins was arraigned in Washington County Court Friday afternoon, where Patrick Dunn and Todd Lancaster were appointed as his public defenders.

Per the state's recommendation, represented by Erik Petersen, Washington County chief deputy attorney, Collins will be held without bond, and will remain in custody in Washington County.

A preliminary hearing is scheduled for Oct. 18 at 11 a.m.

At a press conference held Sept. 1, Washington County Attorney Scott Vander Schaaf said he did not believe there was a connection between Childers and Collins, who had been traveling and living throughout the midwest.

Vander Schaaf indicated Collins' motive was monetary-related, and was done "out of haste."

Several agencies were involved in assisting the Washington County Sheriff's Office with locating Collins: the Omaha Police Department, the Douglas County Sheriff's Department, U.S. Marshals, Saunders County Sheriff's Office and the Douglas County Attorney's Office.

No additional suspects are being looked into at this time.