Ex-wife pleads guilty for role in Robert Caldwell’s 2017 killing in Riverside

RIVERSIDE — A Centerville woman has pleaded guilty to interstate stalking that ultimately resulted in the death of her husband, Robert Caldwell, in a 2017 shooting in Riverside.

Prosecutors have recommended a sentence of 20 to 35 years in prison for Tawnney Caldwell, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.

According to a plea agreement, around 6 p.m. on Aug. 15, 2017, Robert Caldwell and his three children left a counseling appointment in Riverside. Robert Caldwell was shot multiple times while walking across the parking lot and his children witnessed the attack.

The suspected shooter was later identified as Sterling Roberts, who Tawnney Caldwell had been dating at the time of the killing.

Robert Caldwell’s son, Jacob, went missing for over a year after watching his father’s death.

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According to prosecutors, Tawnney and Robert Caldwell had been in an ongoing argument over the custody of their kids. Tawnney Caldwell had talked to Sterling Roberts, while he was in jail, at least twice about killing Robert Caldwell, prosecutors said.

Court documents alleged Roberts acted like a customer in need of stonework and messaged Robert Caldwell to lure him into meeting with him in Jamestown in early August 2017.

“Roberts, armed with a gun, allegedly ambushed Robert Caldwell, who fled and called 911. Robert Caldwell eventually escaped that encounter and reported it to the Greene County Sheriff’s Office,” prosecutors said in a statement.

According to Tawnney Caldwell’s plea, between the time of the attempted homicide and shooting death of Robert Caldwell, Roberts fled to Tennessee. Tawnney Caldwell then went to Tennessee and picked him up, stopping in Kentucky to by an AK-47.

“The two planned the details of the victim’s murder together at Tawnney Caldwell’s residence and were in contact via cell phone multiple times before and after the murder,” according to Tawnney Caldwell’s plea.

Roberts is scheduled to go on trial in federal court on Nov. 30.

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