Wrestling coach accused in fatal shooting receives July trial da - San Diego, California News Station - KFMB Channel 8 - cbs8.com

Wrestling coach accused in fatal shooting receives July trial date

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SAN DIEGO (CNS) - A July 22 trial date was set Monday for a Madison High School wrestling coach accused of fatally shooting a former assistant coach at the victim's Bay Park home.

Jeret Thomas Needham faces 50 years to life in prison if convicted of murder in the Sept. 24 death of 45-year-old Robert Colegrove.

Needham, 42, pleaded not guilty at his arraignment in Superior Court Monday.

Judge Charles Gill set a readiness conference for May 12.

San Diego police homicide Detective Desiree Spurlock testified during a preliminary hearing earlier this month that investigators found a bullet hole in the back gate of a residence where Colegrove lived.

Colegrove's widow, Terra Jones, testified that her husband worked for Needham previously but quit when he found out that Needham was a "drunk."

Jones testified that about four months before her husband was killed, Needham groped her from behind as she made the bed in Colegrove's room -- a converted garage -- behind the home on Denver Street.

On Sept. 24, Needham called about 1 p.m. and asked to come over to talk to Colegrove, Jones testified.

She said Needham showed up drunk, pushed his way past her and sat down in Colegrove's chair.

When Needham refused to get out of the chair, Colegrove slapped him on the shoulder, then punched and kicked the defendant after he was on the floor, Jones said.

Jones said her husband told the defendant, "Keep your hands off my wife."

About an hour later, she said she heard a "big loud bang" and found her wounded husband in the backyard. Colegrove died at the scene. Investigators found a small knife under his body.

About 3:30 p.m. that day, police surrounded a home in Clairemont and ordered Needham to surrender, which he did about 6 p.m.

Needham worked as a "walk-on" coach for the Clairemont Mesa school for the past three years, Jack Brandais of the San Diego Unified School District said.

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