Robbery suspect held in Nevada County jail on $400K bond | TheUnion.com

Robbery suspect held in Nevada County jail on $400K bond

Leah Amber Booth, also known as Leah Hunsaker

One of three defendants in a 2015 home invasion robbery was booked Wednesday into the Nevada County Jail on a $400,000 bond, authorities said.

Leah Amber Booth, also known as Leah Hunsaker, 39, is facing charges of robbery and burglary while armed, and grand theft of a firearm. She was transported here from a Sacramento County jail, records state.

The other defendants in the robbery — Joshua Paulin, 42, and Gregory Woodward, 35 — already have appeared in court.

Paulin has pleaded not guilty and will return to court for a felony conference on Feb. 7. He was released on his own recognizance, court records show.

Woodward, meanwhile, has argued that a prior plea agreement should be set aside and his robbery charges dismissed.

A criminal complaint in the 2015 robbery was not filed until December 2018. That nearly three-year gap was the basis for a motion argued in court by Woodward’s public defender, Thomas Angell, on Jan. 10.

Court filings in Woodward’s case explain the basis for his arrest and that of Hunsaker and Paulin.

Nevada County sheriff’s deputies had responded to a residence on Purdon Road, where two victims reported they had been robbed at gunpoint of gold, jewelry and weapons, including three crossbows and multiple firearms.

Woodward and Hunsaker were arrested the next day in Sacramento County, and were found in possession of several of the stolen items, records state. All three defendants were identified as participating in the robbery by another suspect in the case, who has since died.

At some point Hunsaker was released, and not rearrested on the December 2018 robbery accusation until this month.

At the time the robbery case was filed in 2018, Woodward was participating in drug court after taking a plea in an unrelated case from earlier that year, Angell said.

Woodward’s attorney was told he had no pending cases. The new charges made his continued participation in drug court impossible, Angell told Judge Robert Tice-Raskin. The death of the witness to the robbery also was cited as a reason to dismiss.

Deputy District Attorney Cambria Lisonbee, however, argued the three-year delay was due to staff turnover and was not negligence sufficient to warrant a dismissal of the charges. She added there was no proof Woodward’s attorney had been assured there were no pending cases. The possibility of an evidentiary hearing was raised, which Tice-Raskin will address when Woodward returns to court Jan. 31.

To contact Staff Writer Liz Kellar, email lizk@theunion.com or call 530-477-4236.


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