SANTA ROSA (CBS SF) — One of five defendants who was charged with murder during a robbery last year pleaded no contest Friday morning in Sonoma County Superior Court to seven felony counts of home invasion robbery.
Amber Hembree, 22, of Richmond Virginia, was the last of the defendants who were arrested and charged with 24 felony counts in connection with a home invasion robbery at a residence in the 3600 block of Melcon Lane southwest of Santa Rosa on Feb. 8, 2018. Jose Luis Torres, 54, was fatally shot during the robbery.
The defendants also are charged in connection with a home invasion robbery in the 1900 block of Fulton Road on Feb. 8. A male occupant of that residence was shot but survived. The robberies in unincorporated Sonoma County happened between 4:20 and 6:45 a.m.
The Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office said at the time that the motive for the robberies appeared to be marijuana related.
The five defendants, four of them from the East Coast, allegedly fled to Vallejo in a van after the robberies. Three defendants were quickly arrested there, a fourth defendant was arrested at a motel in Santa Rosa, and Hembree was arrested in Chester, Virginia on June 11, 2018.
The remaining defendants, Jonathan Christopher Jackson, 20, and David Ealey, 24, both of Richmond, Virginia, Tyrone Lamar Mcrae, 26, of Jackson, Mississippi and Mussie Kibrom Himed, 29, of Santa Rosa, are scheduled for a preliminary hearing on May 30.
The charges include murder, kidnapping, burglary, home invasion robbery, false imprisonment and assault with a semi-automatic rifle.
Hembree will be sentenced to a stipulated 12-year term in any penal institution as part of the plea agreement. Each of the seven home invasion robbery charges applies to a victim in the residences. A sentencing date will be set in June.