In this 2009 photo provided by the California State Parks, the California State Mining and Mineral Museum is shown in Mariposa, Calif. Authorities say thieves made off with an estimated $2 million in gold and precious gems during the armed robbery of a state mineral and mining museum Friday, Sept. 28, 2012 in the Central Valley. (AP Photo/California State Parks, John Palmer)
MARIPOSA, Calif. —
Three of the four suspects charged in connection with a brazen heist of gold and gems from a state museum in the Sierra foothills have pleaded not guilty.
The Merced Sun Star reports that during their arraignment Monday, 43-year-old Matthew Campbell, 41-year-old Jonathan Matis and 40-year-old Edward Rushing III pleaded not guilty to robbery and other charges.
The fourth man charged, 42-year-old Christopher Scott Sheffield, was not represented by an attorney, so he did not enter a plea. He was ordered to return to court Tuesday.
Prosecutors say during the Sept. 28 robbery of the California State Mining and Mineral Museum in Mariposa the four men made off with $1.3 million worth of gold, gems and artifacts.
Investigators say some of the stolen loot has been recovered, but have not said how much.
All four suspects are being held on $1 million bail.
Watchdogs are questioning an exclusive agreement between the City of Oakland and a non-profit group, tapped to lead a multi-million dollar project to redevelop the area around the Coliseum BART station.