Grass Valley robbery case moves toward trial
The attorney for accused robber Tyler Ferris argued Tuesday that his client, who police say drove the getaway car, had no involvement in a drug deal gone bad.
Defense attorney John Mohun, who represents the 26-year-old Ferris, said his client didn’t participate in the theft of 10 pounds of suspected marijuana and that he had no gun during a March 3 robbery.
Judge Chris Chandler disagreed, finding enough probable cause to continue Ferris’ case toward trial.
“We are pleased that the evidence at the preliminary hearing showed Mr. Ferris should face serious felony charges based on his actions,” Deputy District Attorney Ed Grubaugh said in an email. “We hope that the hearing brings us closer to holding Mr. Ferris accountable for his actions.”
Ferris, who’s free on bond, is next scheduled to appear Monday in Nevada County Superior Court on charges of robbery and assault with a semi-automatic firearm.
Ferris is one of three people accused by authorities of robbing a man near downtown Grass Valley.
Keion Paris, 28, is the second. He pleaded no contest in April to second-degree robbery and admitted to using a firearm. He’s since been sentenced to six years in prison.
The third man, 27-year-old Quron Jones, is wanted in connection with the robbery. He hasn’t yet been arrested, Grass Valley Police Detective Clinton Lovelady testified.
“This is a drug deal,” Lovelady said at one point. “You’re going to have to figure out what actually happened, and most of the time you will.”
According to Lovelady, Ferris and the victim arranged to meet at a West Main Street home. The victim would sell him 10 pounds of marijuana for $7,000.
Ferris, Paris and Jones arrived at the home. They examined some marijuana inside the car before Ferris backed the vehicle into the victim’s driveway. Paris then walked to a garage with the victim, the detective testified.
The victim later said he thought it odd that Ferris left his vehicle running, he added.
Paris grabbed a duffle bag filled with marijuana and walked back to Ferris’ vehicle. Paris then dropped the bag, opened the car door and pointed a handgun at the victim, Lovelady said.
“It was near his hip,” Lovelady said. “He turned it sideways and I believe he cocked it.”
Ferris drove away, the detective testified. Authorities said it was stopped minutes later by a Nevada City officer. A search revealed a stolen 9 mm handgun and the marijuana.
Mohun asked Lovelady if anyone gave a statement linking Ferris to the robbery.
“He set up the marijuana transaction,” the detective answered.
To contact Staff Writer Alan Riquelmy, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 530-477-4239.
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