FAIRFIELD — Plea deals may soon be in the works for five young suspects who face murder and robbery charges for the June 2011 strong-arm robbery of the elderly owner of the Travis Dairy, who died shortly after the robbery.
Talk of the plea deal arose during the third day of a probable cause hearing that had been forecast to last no longer than two days. The hearing will now drag into at least a fifth day, which may not scheduled until February 2013.
Defendants James E. Williamson, 16, James Young, Osis “O Money” Smith, Dezmon “Young D” Frazier, each 18, and Chelsea Johnson, 19, have all pleaded not guilty. All five defendants are set to return to court Friday after their probable cause hearing was interrupted Wednesday afternoon.
Johnson is the only defendant who faces life in prison without possibility of parole if convicted, because she was the only adult among the defendants at the time of the robbery. The other four defendants were all juveniles at the time of the robbery and prosecutors chose to prosecute them as adults.
Much of the testimony Wednesday revolved around the defendants’ damning statements captured on police video cameras several days after the June 28, 2011, robbery of the East Travis Boulevard store. Ho Kim, the 70-year-old owner of the business, was robbed and doused with pepper spray during the heist.
After her arrest, Johnson told detective Brett Morris that her take from the deadly robbery amounted to $5, which she spent on cigarettes. Johnson told Morris her role as the driver for the robbery included fleeing to Vacaville after the robbery, taking the back roads where two of her accomplices emptied the cash register they carried out of the store, before dumping it along the side of the road. Johnson had left two of the others,
Williamson and his brother Young, at the crime scene. They fled on foot before police arrived at the store.
After his arrest, James E. Williamson told Morris his share of the loot was some Newport cigarettes. He also said he had no idea his brother had pepper spray and that he did not want Kim to be hurt.
Judge Donna Stashyn ordered the defendants to return to court Friday when a future court date will be scheduled to either finalize plea deals or to conclude the protracted probable cause hearing.
Reach Jess Sullivan at 427-6919 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/jsullivandr.