A Ceres man was booked into the County Jail on Thursday morning, Nov. 3 after an officer found him in possession of a stolen Honda Civic in front of 1547 Bridgewater Drive.
Officer Jesus Salinas was on patrol at 11:03 a.m. when he noticed the green Honda which had two different license plates affixed to it. The front license plate belonged to a trailer. Salinas noticed two men walking towards the vehicle from the side of the house of 1547 Bridgewater Drive. He drove around the block and found the two men driving off in the vehicle. He watched the car stop at Darby Lane and southbound on Richland Avenue and eastbound Richard Way. Officer Salinas followed the vehicle until the assistance arrived. A traffic stop was then initiated on the vehicle in the parking lot of 1907 Central Ave.
Driver Abel Arellano, 28, of Ceres, informed officers that he is on probation. Also detained was passenger John Walker, 37, of Ceres. The Honda had been stolen out of Hughson and a shaved key was stuck in the ignition. Arellano said that he bought the car for $1,000 from a person about a month ago at the McDonald's on Whitmore Avenue, claiming to have the paper work but not have the pink slip. Arellano denied knowing about the switched front plate and said the Honda didn't come with a rear plate so he used his friend's plate so he wouldn't get stopped by police. He said the shaved key came with the car but he did not think it was a shaved key since it had the "H" logo on it.
Walker said he had just got into the vehicle and did not know it was stolen. Walker said that he had not seen Arellano in a while so he did not know how long Abel had the vehicle. Walker was released from the scene.
The vehicle was towed pending notification of the owner.
Arellano was booked for felony auto theft, possession of stolen property and probation violation.