Defense attorney for Penn Valley murder suspect questions competence |

Defense attorney for Penn Valley murder suspect questions competence

A defense attorney for murder suspect Robert Lloyd Steuber said Thursday, Sept. 15, that she intends to raise doubts about her client’s competence, a claim that could affect the prosecution against him.

Steuber, 82, didn’t appear in Nevada County Superior Court. His deputy public defender, Tamara Zuromskis, said his medical condition makes transporting him difficult for deputies.

“He has serious medical problems,” Zuromskis said. “He’s severely hearing impaired.”

Judge Linda Sloven agreed to postpone the case until Sept. 21, saying Steuber at that time could opt to waive future court appearances.

Zuromskis then said she intends to argue her client’s competence. She referenced a confidential evaluation already performed on Steuber, which she plans on sharing with both prosecutors and the judge.

Steuber is accused by authorities in July of fatally shooting Sandra Lebarron during an argument at their Penn Valley home. Steuber, in a wheelchair, left Lebarron in a room in their mobile home to get a handgun. He then returned to the room and shot Lebarron multiple times.

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Steuber remained Thursday in the Nevada County Jail without bond.