A well-loved and respected former employee of the Tahoe National Forest has been found dead in his home outside Placerville and his wife has been arrested on a charge of murder. El Dorado County Sheriff’s Lt. Tim Becker says deputies discovered the body of 72 year old Robert Harris on Sunday evening January 6th after the sheriff’s department received a call of a shooting in the 32-hundred block of Wilderness Court.
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The El Dorado county District Attorney’s Office has taken over the investigation. Colleen Harris has been arrested and booked into the Eldorado County Jail on one count of homicide.
According to reports in the Mountain Democrat, Harris was accused in the death of her second husband, James Batten, 27 years ago. Batten was discovered in the same house on Wilderness Court with two gunshot wounds. In 1985, a psychiatrist testified at Colleen Batten’s trial that she suffered from partial amnesia, and she was found innocent.
Tahoe National Forest Public Information Officer Ann Westling remembers Bob Harris as the Forest Engineer on the Tahoe National Forest from 1975 to 1983. He was responsible for directing the work of 75 people in the engineering unit a building roads, trails and bridges. Westling says Harris is fondly remembered.
Westling says Bob Harris will also be remembered for the time he spent as an umpire and coaching little league baseball in Nevada County.
Colleen Harris will be back in court next week for her arraignment. She’s being held without bail.