Accused Nevada County home invader has prior murder conviction, court records state |

Accused Nevada County home invader has prior murder conviction, court records state

Nevada County prosecutors say in court documents that one of the men accused of a Grizzly Trail home invasion was convicted almost 30 years ago in Colorado of second-degree murder and kidnapping.

Michael Diaz, 46, faces charges of home invasion robbery, kidnapping to commit another crime and first-degree burglary in connection with the Dec. 11 robbery in rural Nevada County. Newly filed court documents also accuse him of 1989 murder and kidnapping convictions in Denver.

The murder and kidnapping convictions could affect Diaz’s sentence on his recent charges, if convicted.

Diaz and his codefendants — Steve Ray Rhodes, 28; and Shawn Turnage, 24, all of Texas — appeared Thursday in Nevada County Superior Court. All pleaded not guilty to their charges and are next scheduled to appear Feb. 1 in court.

The three men, who remained in jail Thursday, Jan. 4, on bonds of $500,000 each, are accused by authorities of binding their victim’s hands before stealing thousands of dollars in cash and several pounds of suspected marijuana. Their car out of gas, the men fled the area. Officers captured all three men by noon that day.

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