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Gardner murder suspect’s whereabouts remain unknown after search of Lake Wampanoag comes up empty

GARDNER, Mass. — Dive teams on Friday scoured Lake Wampanoag in Gardner as the search for a man wanted in connection with the murder of his wife entered its sixth day, officials said.

The Massachusetts State Police Dive Team and Marine Unit, along with Massachusetts Environmental Police, searched the lake for evidence, which is located near Camp Collier where 33-year-old Aaron Pennington’s white 2013 BMW Model 320 was found in a wooded area by a hunter on Monday night.

“There is no specific information suggesting Pennington is in the lake but we continue to investigate all possibilities,” state police said in a statement.

Shortly before 4 p.m., state police announced that the search turned up no clues in their search for Pennington.

“Today’s search of Lake Wampanoag is concluded. Pennington was not located. State Police and Gardner Police detectives continue to investigate his whereabouts,” state police said.

A murder warrant was issued earlier this week charging Pennington in the shooting death of 30-year-old Breanne Pennington on Sunday, Oct. 22.

Officers were called to the couple’s home on Cherry Street in Gardner around 9 a.m. on that Sunday after their four children, ages 2, 5, 7, and 9, left the house and told a neighbor that “they could not find their father and that their mother was in her bedroom crying,” the warrant indicated.

Detectives said Breanne was found lying in bed in an upstairs bedroom “with obvious signs of death from an apparent gunshot wound to the head.”

Through interviews and video surveillance, investigators learned that the couple “had been dealing with marital issues for quite some time.”

Since the discovery of Pennington’s BMW, members of the State Police Special Response Team, the State Police Tactical Operations Response Team, the Violent Fugitives Apprehension Section, state police K9 units, and Gardner and Ashburnham police have been searching a vast, 400-acre tract of woods to try to locate him and have asked hunters to check trail cameras.

Pennington should be considered armed and dangerous, and the public should not approach him or try to search for him but rather call 911 immediately.

Authorities described Pennington as a white male with blonde hair, and blue eyes, standing 6 feet, 2 inches tall, and weighing approximately 175 pounds.

Anyone with information is urged to contact Gardner police or state police.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates as more information becomes available.

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