Bealer's trial may be held in Sacramento County

Nov 10, 2014 8:58 PM

There is a new development in the change of venue motion for Quentin Bealer, the man accused of murdering a Red Bluff teen.
14-year old Marysa Nichols was found strangled to death next to her high school -- today -- a Tehama County Judge announced three possible locations for Bealer's trial, making Bealer's change of venue approval the first one in ten years.

Bealer's defense attorney has been pushing to have the murder trial heard out of Tehama County since April, and today, the judge overseeing the case announced three potential locations where Bealer could be transferred.

"It's the right result...I think there was overwhelming evidence that Mr. Bealer could not get a fair trial here in Tehama County."

No fair trial according to Bealer's attorney because of sensational, inflammatory pre-trial publicity that flooded the North State after the body of 14-year old Marysa Nichols was found in a creek near Red Bluff High School.

"The goal of any trial whether you're on the defense or prosecution, should be to have a fair trial, and that just can't happen here."

"We were hopeful that we would prevail in that motion and keep the case here."

At today's hearing, Judge John Garaventa announced three locations where bealer could possibly be transferred -- Yolo, Colusa or Sacramento counties.

Shon Northam is pushing to hold the trial in Sacramento County, in part because he's practiced there for almost a decade and says he's familiar with their court system.

"Sacramento is the has a wider jury pool, we are more likely to a fair and impartial jury than we are in Colusa County."

Tehama County District Attorney Gregg Cohen says it will be more of a challenge to his office if the trial is held in Sacramento County.

"We as a prosecution team, it's a little more pressure on us...we're outside of our office but we do have fellow prosecutors in the area that have been supportive of us."

Cohen says he's still confident in their case and is looking forward to starting the trial.
Another hearing is set for Wednesday afternoon, where a location for Bealer's trasnsfer will be finalized.


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