Man sentenced to six years in Nevada County shooting death |

Man sentenced to six years in Nevada County shooting death

Joshua Aaron Crook

Joshua Crook was sentenced to six years in prison Friday in what authorities called the “unintentional” shooting of 25-year-old Jacob Halleib.

But Halleib’s family made it clear the resolution of Crook’s case was far from the justice they sought.

“How can you take someone’s life and spend six years in prison?” said Halleib’s sister, Jorja Greene. “It’s a slap on the wrist and a slap in our faces.”

Crook was arrested on Sept. 8, 2018, after Halleib was shot in the 15000 block of Niels Meade Drive in Grass Valley. Nevada County Sheriff’s deputies arrived at the scene and found Halleib bleeding heavily from his head while a friend attempted CPR. Halleib died at a Roseville hospital the next morning.

In April, Crook, 27, pleaded no contest to grossly negligent discharge of a firearm and admitted to an enhancement of personal infliction of great bodily injury. A charge of assault with a deadly weapon was dropped.

At the time, prosecutor Ed Grubaugh said the District Attorney’s office did not charge Crook with homicide because the facts were insufficient to prove the level of malicious intent and willful conduct necessary to sustain a homicide charge.

“The D.A. knows it wasn’t an accident,” Greene told Crook at the sentencing hearing. “You know it wasn’t an accident.”

A tearful Greene took Crook to task for “not once” showing signs of remorse during the criminal proceedings.

“I do not forgive you,” she said.

“I understand the feeling that this is not justice,” Judge Candace Heidelberger told Halleib’s family. “But the District Attorney has to charge an offense that is supported by the proof, and this is the maximum sentence allowable under the law for the charge.

“I know that doesn’t help you to feel like justice is being done,” Heidelberger continued, assuring the family this was the appropriate charge given the evidence.

Contact reporter Liz Kellar at 530-477-4236 or by email at

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