In 2019, successful tech and cannabis entrepreneur Tushar Atre was abducted from his affluent home on the Californian coast, never to be seen or heard from alive again. After all, as explored on CBS’ ’48 Hours: Who Shot the Tech Exec?,’ he was found dead near his own cannabis manufacturing facility along the Soquel San Jose Road in the Santa Cruz Mountains mere hours later. Four individuals have since been accused of the offense, and reports reveal that Tushar knew at least two of them — Kaleb Charters and Stephen Lindsay — so let’s find out more about them, shall we?
Who Are Kaleb Charters and Stephen Lindsay?
Both Kaleb Charters and Stephen Lindsay were employees of Tushar Atre at one of his cannabis facilities for less than 14 days back in August 2019, not even two months before the incident. However, what’s important is that there was animosity between the parties within this short period, most of which had nothing to do with the actual labor-intensive work the duo did. From a pay cut over lost car keys to public push-ups as a form of punishment, the reason for the hostility comprised several things, making authorities believe that the two members of the US Army Reserve could’ve sought retribution.
Investigators questioned both Kaleb and Stephen in December, but they stated their dispute with Tushar ended once he paid them, albeit partially, and they never returned to Santa Cruz after leaving work again. However, in May 2020, along with a couple of accomplices, the young men were arrested and charged owing to surveillance footage as well as cellphone data linking them to the case. That’s when all four of them implicated one another while backing the authorities’ robbery gone wrong theory, and the duo in question even inquired what took so long to identify them.
“The plan was to go to an empty house known to have a lot of money and take that money. Things quickly got out of control,” a defense attorney once argued. As per official records, though, Kaleb allegedly dropped off the others at Tushar’s place on purpose before making his way to the cannabis facility to wait for them to arrive. Thus, even if he wasn’t physically there, Kaleb supposedly did have a hand in the offense from the get-go. On the flip side, Stephen was ostensibly present, yet apart from claims made by accomplices, there’s no direct evidence tying him to the matter.
Where Are Kaleb Charters and Stephen Lindsay Now?
Both Kaleb Charters and Stephen Nicolas Lindsay, along with Kaleb’s brother, Kurtis Charters, and a friend Joshua James Camps, were indicted on a total of seven counts. They are murder, first-degree robbery, second-degree robbery, carjacking, kidnapping, kidnapping to commit another crime, and first-degree burglary. There’s also a special circumstance in these charges of robbery and abduction during the commission of a murder. Therefore, if convicted, they face up to a life sentence within a California State Correctional Facility, maybe even without the possibility of parole.
Kaleb and Stephen were denied bail by a judge back in 2020 itself, and they have also since pleaded not guilty to the charges against them, which means they are currently awaiting trial while in custody. In short, the now 21-year-old (having been extradited from his hometown of St. Clair Shores in Michigan) and the 24-year-old Burbank native, respectively, are presently detained at the Santa Cruz County Jail on Water Street.