Trial date set for Fresno man accused of murder

Joshua Robertson convicted of murder and Brittney Humphrey convicted of kidnapping.
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A trial date was set Monday for one of two men accused of killing Kimberly Harvill, whose body was found in Gorman last year.

Alex Richard Valdez, a 29-year-old warehouse worker who lives in Firebaugh west of Fresno, appeared Monday in San Fernando Superior Court where he was told that his trial would begin March 1.

He and another man, Joshua Aaron Robertson, 28, are charged with murdering Harvill, whose body was discovered in a remote area of Gorman on Aug. 14, 2016. They also face a special circumstance allegation of lying in wait, making them eligible for the death penalty.

Robertson is scheduled to appear in court Tuesday for a preliminary hearing.

During a preliminary hearing prosecutors present evidence in the case, and the defense can respond, after which the judge will decide if the case should go to trial.

A Fresno woman – who was arrested with Robertson in August 2016 in connection with the same killing – pleaded no contest last month to kidnapping three young children of her half-sister, Harvill.

Brittney Sue Humphrey, 23, was sentenced to 13 years in prison.

Humphrey and Robertson were alleged to have kidnapped the three young children of Kimberly Harvill a little more than a year ago. The three children were ages 5, 3 and 2 when the crime occurred.

The children were later found abandoned in New Mexico at a motel. Humphrey and Robertson were arrested in Colorado in October 2016 on suspicion of murdering Harvill and of then kidnapping Harvill’s three children.

Robertson also was charged with one count of possession of a firearm by a felon and two counts of an unrelated arson and one count of possession of flammable material.

Valdez was arrested in Fresno about six months later, on March 24, on an outstanding warrant, Det. Scott Matlock, of the Los Angeles County Sheriff Department’s Homicide Bureau told The Signal Tuesday.

“He was arrested in connection with Kimberly Harvill’s death,” he said.

Harvill’s body was found lying in the brush by a motorist on Aug. 14, 2016, along Gorman Post Road, north of California State Route 138, in Lebec, near the Kern County line. She had been shot.

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