Auburn 4-year-old’s death case from 1970 has January court date

By: Journal Staff
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Patricia Thomas is charged with murder in the death of her 4-year-old daughter in 1970.


AUBURN CA - The court case of a 66-year-old former Auburn woman charged with drowning her 4-year-old daughter in a bathtub 42 years ago will have an early settlement conference Jan. 7.

The conference will be held in Auburn and is a continuation of an early settlement conference that took place Monday in Placer County Superior Court in North Auburn.

Charged with murder is Patricia Thomas. Authorities contend that Thomas confessed to the drowning in a recorded conversation with a family member. Defense attorney Thomas Leupp filed documents at a bail hearing earlier this year contending Thomas was duped into telling a false version of her daughter, Cindy Howell’s death at the family’s Auburn home.

Thomas, who is being held through in-home monitoring, has pleaded not guilty to the murder charge.