Nevada County shooting death case ends in plea |

Nevada County shooting death case ends in plea

Joshua Aaron Crook

A man accused in what authorities called an unintentional shooting has pleaded guilty with the agreement he’ll receive a six-year prison sentence, a Nevada County prosecutor said.

Joshua Crook, 27, pleaded last week 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 will be dropped, Deputy District Attorney Ed Grubaugh said in an email.

Crook’s sentencing in Nevada County Superior Court is scheduled for May 31.

Arrested Sept. 8 for shooting 25-year-old Jacob Halleib, Crook remained jailed on Wednesday.

“I have forgiveness in my heart for Mr. Crook. However, I do not believe six years is hardly enough time to reform.” — Nicole Wellington

“We didn’t charge Mr. Crook with homicide because, at the conclusion of the investigation, the facts were insufficient to prove the level of malicious intent and willful conduct necessary to sustain a homicide charge,” Grubaugh said.

Defense attorney Greg Klein, who represents Crook, couldn’t be reached for comment.

Nicole Wellington, Halleib’s wife, expressed frustration over the expected prison sentence.

“People get more than six years for having marijuana in their backyard,” she said in a message. “He won’t even do that full amount of time. What happens when I have to run into him in the morning grocery store?

“I have forgiveness in my heart for Mr. Crook,” she added. “However, I do not believe six years is hardly enough time to reform.”

According to Grubaugh, Crook will serve over five years and two months.

Authorities have said Crook unintentionally shot Halleib in the 15000 block of Niels Meade Drive in Grass Valley. Police arrested him after interviewing witnesses at the scene.

To contact Staff Writer Alan Riquelmy, email or call 530-477-4239.

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