Tushar Atre death: Did pushups and disrespect lead to murder?

When Tushar Atre was kidnapped within the predawn hours of October 1, 2019, from his residence perched on the oceanside cliffs in Santa Cruz, California, his pals and neighbors within the often quiet surf neighborhood have been in disbelief. Confusion over who would kidnap the profitable tech government and hashish entrepreneur turned to worry after he was discovered useless hours in a while certainly one of his hashish properties — having sustained stab wounds and a deadly gunshot wound to the again of the pinnacle.

“48 Hours” investigates the kidnapping and homicide of a California entrepreneur


“Everyone was spooked. You could really see the fear in people’s eyes,” says CBS San Francisco, KPIX reporter Maria Cid Medina.

Investigators with the Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Office forged a large web for suspects, however in response to Cid Medina, they initially didn’t have a lot to go on. CBS News correspondent Tracy Smith explores the following seven-month lengthy investigation in “Who Shot the Tech Exec?” an all-new “48 Hours” airing Saturday, April 2 at 10/9c on CBS and streaming on Paramount+.

“There were not immediate suspects,” says Cid Medina. “You acquired a way that investigators didn’t have any leads on this case.

That all modified when detectives started to dig deeper into Atre’s hashish enterprise. As they interviewed his staff and associates, there have been two names they heard greater than as soon as.

“Two of the names that kept popping up were Stephen Lindsay and Kaleb Charters,” says former police chief and “48 Hours” marketing consultant Steve Cercone.

Kaleb Charters and Stephen Lindsay
Kaleb Charters, left, and Stephen Lindsay engaged on Tushar Atre’s Summit property in August 2019, only a couple months earlier than Tushar Arte’s homicide.

Santa Cruz County Court

Both males had labored for Atre in August of 2019 on certainly one of his hashish properties — doing largely handbook labor placing up fence posts and planting. Investigators interviewed each males in December 2019, two months after Atre’s homicide and discovered they’d solely labored for him for lower than two weeks. But in that quick time period there was a whole lot of animosity. Lindsay and Charters apparently misplaced a set of Atre’s automobile keys, after which they discovered he had stopped fee on their paychecks. Lindsay admitted to investigators he was so upset he wished to battle Tushar. There was additionally a narrative that detectives later discovered surrounding a novel type of punishment Atre allegedly inflicted on the boys.

“Apparently, he’d made them do push-ups … in front of other people,” says Cercone. “If that were the case, they were most likely humiliated.”

The keys have been discovered and Atre ultimately did pay Lindsay and Charters for his or her work, although solely partially. They instructed investigators their dispute with him was resolved, and that they by no means returned to Santa Cruz after they stopped working for him. But 5 months after their interviews, they — together with Kaleb’s brother, Kurtis Charters, and a pal, Joshua Camps, have been arrested for Atre’s kidnapping and homicide. Investigators mentioned it was a theft gone unsuitable, however Mary Fulginiti, a former federal prosecutor and “48 Hours” marketing consultant, says there’s extra to the motive and suggests they should look no additional than how Atre allegedly handled Lindsay and Charters.

“Does this story of Tushar humiliating Stephen Lindsay and Kaleb Charters point to motive?” Tracy Smith requested her.

“Yes,” replied Fulginiti. “Definitely.”

She says the truth that each males have been within the U.S. Army Reserve may additionally play into lingering resentment.

“When you look at the Army Reserve, right, and you look at the Army or any of the military operations, I mean, they’re taught respect,” says Fulginiti. “And here he is feeding into that disrespect … and mistreatment.”

All 4 males have pleaded not responsible and are awaiting trial. It’s a day that Tushar Atre’s family members stay up for as they grapple along with his loss.

“People are looking forward to this trial starting,” says Cid Medina. “And they want to see justice served, especially Tushar’s friends.”

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