The preliminary examination for a Jupiter man accused of murder was postponed for a second time because of a scheduling conflict for his attorney and the Tuolumne County assistant district attorney who is trying the case.

Matthew Robert Moreno Grogg, 23, appeared in court in a red Tuolumne County Jail jumpsuit and spoke once to Tuolumne County Superior Court Judge Kevin Seibert one time to acknowledge his name.

Grogg has pleaded not guilty to the charge of murder in the death of Scott Rockey, 31, who was found dead in a marijuana garden on his property in Jupiter on Oct. 17 by Tuolumne County Sheriff’s Office deputies.

Grogg’s attorney, Hallie Gorman, and Tuolumne County Assistant District Attorney Eric Hovatter agreed to postpone Grogg’s preliminary examination to Feb. 6 at 1:30 p.m. in Department 4 of the Tuolumne County Superior Court due to them being scheduled to appear on a separate multi-defendant case on the same day.

Gorman added that there is still some outstanding evidence in the case.

Grogg’s preliminary examination was pushed to Jan. 23 on Nov. 30 pending the delivery of outstanding discovery to the defense.

The pre-preliminary hearing on Wednesday was intended to check on the status of the delivery of those documents.

At Grogg’s previous hearing, Hovatter said he expected the preliminary hearing to take two to three hours.

Grogg said quietly throughout most of the short hearing and looked toward Judge Seibert. Grogg wore black glasses attached by a wire behind his head and was shackled at the wrists and ankles. He has been in the custody of the Tuolumne County Jail on $1 million bail since his arrest on Oct. 23.
Grogg was arraigned on Oct. 25.
Grogg was arrested less than a week after Rockey was found dead on his property in the area of Rose Creek Circle and Italian Bar Road outside of Twain Harte in the community of Jupiter.

The Tuolumne County Sheriff’s Office has not released any additional information related to Grogg’s connection or suspected motive for the shooting.
According to Tuolumne County Sheriff’s Office logs, someone on Italian Bar Road and Rose Creek Circle called the Sheriff’s Office at 10 p.m. Oct. 16 to report that her “boyfriend was just shot in the head.”

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