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Attack with shovel ends with police canine release
A police canine helped officers assist in subduing a Ceres man armed with a shovel who moments prior assaulted a man during an enraged fit.

Jimmie Allen Gray, 31, of Ceres, was taken into custody during the Feb. 2 incident outside an apartment complex in in the unincorporated area of the county in the 3800 block of El Camino Avenue. Ceres police were called on scene at 9:41 p.m. because deputies would take too long responding.

According to police, Gray attacked a 23-year-old man who was visiting a female friend inside an apartment. The victim said Gray "flipped out" and an argument ensued over an accusation that the victim was recording their conversation and the altercation turned violent. Gray allegedly grabbed a fork and stabbed the victim in the head. The victim was on the floor when Gray allegedly struck him with a chain or a baseball bat. Gray also began to punch and bite the man, yelling that he was going to kill him, said police. He also fetched a knife and began attacking the occupants inside the house. Another man, who is 21, was cut on the arm during the attack. Another man struggled to take the knife away from Gray and managed to push him outside.

When Ceres K-9 Officer Joseph Wren arrived, he saw a bloody Gray holding a shovel in front of an apartment unit. Gray saw Wren approaching and screamed, "I will kill you!" before he started breaking out the front window. Wren took aim at Gray, identified himself as a police officer, and ordered him to drop the shovel. Gray continued to shatter the apartment window rapidly and forcefully.

Wren heard screams coming from the apartment and advanced toward Gray, again ordering him to drop the shovel. Gray turned toward Wren and angrily growled while holding the shovel in his hands. At that moment Gray activated the remote door opener of his nearby patrol car, releasing canine Zeus. Gray tried to fight the dog with the shovel, but was bitten and knocked to the ground. Gray released his grip on the shovel to hit the dog after several bites. Wren struck Gray on the left arm with a baton to gain compliance and protect Zeus. Additional units arrived to the scene and Gray continued to fight with officers after the dog was commanded to stop the attack. Gray was then handcuffed.

The two victims received medical treatment, as did Gray. He was later booked on charges of two counts of attempted murder, resisting arrest, battery on a police canine, and threatening an officer.

None of the officersinvolved including Police K-9 Zeus, were injured during this incident.

Sgt. Jose Berber said the incident came close to being deadly.

"The quick actions of Officer Joseph Wren diffused a potential deadly encounter with a man armed with a shovel," said Berber.

A sample of Gray's blood was submitted to the state criminal lab to determine if he was under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs.


• DRIVER ARRESTED AFTER ROLLING CAR: CERES - Carlos Osorio Zuniga, 29, of Modesto, was standing a block away from an overturned Honda in the road in front of 3413 Morgan Road Saturday morning. When police stopped to talk to him as a suspect or a witness, he said he was just standing there but police weren't buying his story. The busted lip, keys to the car in his hand and obvious signs of intoxication were all they needed to arrested Zuniga for drunken driving.

Ceres Police Lt. Brent Smith said the crash occurred at 3:56 a.m. at Morgan and Hackett roads. The driver was southbound on Morgan Road in the 1999 Honda at an unknown speed. He drifted and struck a fence and electrical pole, with the Honda rolling and coming to rest on its roof in the roadway.

• SHOTS FIRED AT HOUSE: CERES - Police investigated a shotgun shooting into a house at 2961 Sixth Street on Thursday but didn't get far with the homeowner not cooperating and neighbors offering little information.

Two load blasts were heard at 8:54 p.m. on Feb. 7. Police Lt. Brent Smith said two .20 gauge birdshot gun rounds were fired at the residence.

Smith said it's likely that the shooting was gang related.

• BICYCLE STOP ENDS IN DRUG ARREST: CERES - Officer Kiashira Ruiz pulled over a Thursday evening bicycle rider and ended up performing a pat-down search that resulted in a drug arrest.

Ruiz was on patrol at 9:03 p.m. in the area of Pine Street and S. Central Avenue when she stopped 50-year-old Ceres resident Juan Mendoza who was carrying four grams of methamphetamine.

He was arrested for possession of a controlled substance.

• BAR PATRONS HURT IN FIGHT: CERES - A number of patrons of the Midway Club sustained minor to moderate physical injuries after an altercation broke out early Sunday morning at 1:54 a.m.

By the time police arrived a number of persons already left the scene. Police said that a group of Norteno gang members showed up at the club and trouble started. All of those involved in the fight had been drinking and wanted nothing done to find those who left the bar.

A report on the incident is being forwarded to the Alcohol Beverage Control (ABC) board which determines who may hold a license as a bar.

• METH ARREST MADE: CERES - Ronnie Whitted, 47, of Ceres, was arrested on charges of possession of methamphetamine and a meth smoking device during police contact at 1301 Richland Avenue on Tuesday, Feb. 5.

Officer Kiashira Ruiz was in the apartment complex in response to a suspicious person call made at 6:38 p.m. Ruiz stopped Whitted and found in possession of a meth pipe with a substantial amount of meth inside ready to be smoked.