Home invasion suspect reportedly on way to Nevada County when arrested
A Nebraska man suspected of a pot rip-off in Butte County was arrested Wednesday afternoon as he reportedly was on his way to commit a similar home invasion robbery in Nevada County, authorities said.
Butte County sheriff’s deputies had been called Jan. 13 to a robbery at a residence in Forest Ranch, according to a press release from the Sheriff’s Office. The victims told deputies that four suspects had entered a residence, held three people at gunpoint and then bound them with duct tape. The suspects reportedly took a large amount of cash and marijuana before fleeing. A victim was then able to get free and call for help.
Detectives determined one of the victims had recently spoken with a man who lived in the Midwest about a marijuana transaction. The man was later identified as Robert Johnson, 36. Johnson traveled to Reno and rented a vehicle Jan. 12, and is believed to have planned the robbery with the intent to drive the marijuana back to Nebraska, the press release states.
On Wednesday morning, detectives obtained information Johnson was possibly at the San Francisco Airport and determined he had rented a vehicle there. Based on the investigation, detectives believed Johnson was possibly traveling to Nevada County in order to commit another robbery, according to the release.
Detectives sent out an alert and California Highway Patrol Officers located the vehicle traveling on Highway 80 in Placer County around 12:40 p.m. Highway patrol officers, with the assistance of the Placer County Sheriff’s Office and the Auburn Police Department, stopped the vehicle on Highway 49 and placed Johnson under arrest. Law enforcement located about $28,000 in cash and cellular phones in the vehicle, the release states. Johnson was booked into the Butte County Jail on three felony counts each of robbery and kidnapping.
A second man from Nebraska in the vehicle was identified, interviewed, and released pending additional investigation. Detectives are in the process of identifying the other three individuals involved in the Butte County robbery and additional arrests are anticipated, the release states.
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