Mar 21, 2014 - By Eric Blom, Staff WriterA Lander woman pleaded guilty Thursday to accessory before the fact to robbery in connection with a November mugging at Walmart.
"That is something that doesn't happen in Riverton, Wyoming," Fremont County deputy attorney Patrick LeBrun said. "That, quite frankly, terrified people."
The defendant's concerns about her public defender delayed a resolution in the case, but at the hearing Thursday in Lander District Court, the defendant said she was satisfied with her counsel.
In exchange for Teisha Underwood pleading guilty, LeBrun dropped her charges from conspiracy to commit aggravated robbery and aiding and abetting aggravated robbery to the one felony count.
She now faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison rather than 10 to 50 years. Her agreement with prosecutors leaves both sides able to argue for any sentence they want within the zero- to 10-year range.
In testimony, Underwood explained her role in the robbery. District Court Judge Norman E. Young, however, was concerned her statements did not substantiate a guilty plea to accessory to robbery, and LeBrun indicated she might not be telling the whole story.
Underwood said she was driving her mother's car with Curtis Oldman, who was 27, of Lander, and his brother Adrian Sixfeathers, who was 16, of St. Stephen's on Nov. 10.
Sixfeathers asked her to drive to Walmart because he wanted to "grab a bag," Underwood said.
She did not know what he meant, Underwood said.
"I didn't really think much of it ... maybe that he was going to steal something from Walmart," she said. "I didn't think he was going to rob somebody."
When they arrived at the parking lot, Sixfeathers left the car alone. After he left, Sixfeathers pointed an air pistol at a 64-year-old woman's head and took her purse, an affidavit in the case stated. He returned to the car a few minutes later and said, "Go, go, go."
Underwood drove away and did not stop when an officer with the Riverton Police Department tried to pull her over. She continued until she reached private property on 17 Mile Road, where she was arrested.
Accessory to robbery plea
Underwood's statements did not support the accessory to robbery plea, Young said.
Security video from the store shows a different story, according to LeBrun.
The tape shows Underwood's car "cruising" the parking lot, going back and forth before parking, the prosecutor said. Then, two figures exit the vehicle and stand behind it for a minute and a half until the victim leaves the store.
A figure identifiable as Sixfeathers approaches the victim and robs her, he said.
Underwood said she did not dispute the security video would show what LeBrun described.
Young was satisfied that the facts fit the plea and ordered a presentence investigation. A date for the sentencing has not been set.
Underwood considered accepting the plea agreement in February, but she thought her attorney, public defender Lore Lei Gorseth, was not representing her well.
Young recommended she postpone agreeing to a deal while she sought a private attorney and gave her several weeks to do so.
At the hearing Thursday, Young said Underwood had not hired a new lawyer, and the defendant said she would continue with Gorseth.
"Are you satisfied with her representation of you in this case?" Young asked Underwood.
The defendant paused then said, "Yes."
Young also lowered Underwood's bond from $50,000 cash to $25,000 cash or surety.
Gorseth argued for a lower bond so her client could get out of jail and babysit for her mother.
"She has shown how sad she feels about this," Gorseth said.
LeBrun said cash was appropriate.
"She stands convicted basically of maintaining the getaway car while the principal pointed a gun ... at a lady in her early 60s," he said.
Curtis Oldman still faces trial for one count of conspiracy to commit aggravated robbery and one of accessory to aggravated robbery before the fact. Sixfeathers was charged as an adult, and his case is sealed.
The cases of minors facing charges can be sealed if their attorneys ask to move their cases to juvenile court. If they are transferred, the cases stay sealed.
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