Zachary Gardner, waived his right to a preliminary hearing on a second-degree murder charge in connection with the January death of his wife.

The 33 year old Gardner informed the court of his decision to skip a preliminary hearing and proceed to arraignment. It is not uncommon for a defendant to make such a decision.

Gardner will be arraigned at 1:30 p.m. July 24 in the Cowley County Dist. courtroom of Judge Nick St. Peter. It will be the first time Gardner is asked to enter a formal plea to the charge against him.  He remains in the Cowley County Jail.  Bond is set at $500,000.

Last January, Gardner was arrested in connection with the death of his wife, Melissa Gardner.  Police believe the 33 year old woman died as the result of a gunshot wound at a residence in Winfield.

Officers arrived at the home to find her dead. Zachary Gardner was nearby and was placed under arrest.

A preliminary hearing would have given Gardner an opportunity to hear a portion of the state’s evidence against him presented in open court.