Gang shootings continue in Los Banos

City has its 11th and 12th shootings in the past two months

cpride@losbanosenterprise.comJune 17, 2011 

Two shootings that took place in town this week bring Los Banos’ total to 12 since April, 10 of them have been listed as gang-related.

The Los Banos Police Department received a report of a shooting Monday in the 100 Block of W. Pacheco Boulevard at 10:25 p.m.

Police said they encountered a male, 29, and a female,51, who told them they were exiting a parking lot when two males walked up to their vehicle and shot at them. The pair were unharmed but bullet holes riddled the car, police said.

The suspects, described as thin Hispanic males, wearing dark colored clothing, reportedly fled the area in a SUV-type vehicle. Police said the incident was gang-related.

A second shooting, also gang-related, occurred Wednesday at 12:36 a.m. on the 300 Block of Santa Paula Street.

Officers spoke with a 38-year-old male who said he was sitting in his vehicle visiting a friend when he noticed another male walking in the area. The man stepped out of the car and was shot at by the person, police said. The the victim was not injured in the incident.

The suspect, described as a male wearing a grey hooded sweatshirt and jeans, is reportedly five-foot seven-inches tall. Police said the suspect weighs 120-130 pounds and was last seen running west on Overland Avenue from Santa Paula Street.

The shootings occurred within a week of Operation Red Zone, a multi-agency gang sweep in Merced and Madera counties that included 30 arrests in Los Banos.

Anyone with information about either of this week’s shootings is asked to contact Det. Wesley Townsley at (209) 827-7070 ext. 146 or leave an anonymous tip on the city Web site at www.losbanos.org.

Stabbing

A gang-related stabbing occurred in town Monday, police said.

Officers found an 18-year-old male suffering from two stab wounds to the torso on the 600 block of Driftwood Avenue at 9:28 p.m.

The victim was unwilling to provide details about the assault, police said.

However, officers eventually learned there were two suspected gang members alleged to be involved in the assault.

The victim was airlifted to Doctors Medical Center in Modesto. He is currently in stable condition. Police are not releasing a description of the suspects.

Anyone with information regarding this incident is asked to contact Det. Wesley Townsley at (209) 827-7070 ext. 146 or leave an anonymous tip on the city Web site at www.losbanos.org.

Robbery

A Los Banos man was robbed at gunpoint Tuesday morning, police said.

Officers arrived at the home of a 24-year-old male at 12:59 a.m. The man told them he was approached by a Hispanic male armed with a handgun in the 1100 Block of West I Street.

The suspect reportedly robbed the victim of his cell phone and fled the area in a dark colored mid-sized pickup. The victim went home after the robbery and contacted police.

“We urge the public to always cooperate if they are the victim of a robbery, remain calm while trying to remember important details, and never to resist. In this case the victim was cooperative and thankfully was not harmed,” Cmdr. Ray Reyna Jr. said.

Anyone with information regarding this incident is asked to contact Det. Sgt. Zina Holden at (209) 827-7070 ext. 147 or leave an anonymous tip on the city Web site at www.losbanos.org.

Weapons arrest

A drunken driving stop led to an arrest for illegal gun possession Tuesday night.

Officer Teresa Provencio stopped 18-year-old Roberto Maldonado and 20-year-old Alfredo Aranda in the 700 Block of Pacheco Boulevard at 11:12 p.m.

While speaking with the men, police noticed a loaded handgun in the vehicle’s front console. The pair were placed in custody. Aranda and Maldonado were arrested on suspicion of participation in a criminal street gang and possession of a concealed firearm in a vehicle by a criminal street gang member.

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