The shooting of a 19-year-old Ceres man was linked to an indoor marijuana growing operation in the 1700 block of Rose Avenue on Thursday morning.
At 10:45 a.m. Jose Padilla, 19, called 911 from a home in the 1600 block of Molly Lane to report that he had been shot in the hand. He told police that he was walking in the 1700 block of Rose Avenue when he heard the crack of gunfire and was struck in hand. Padilla said he ran to a house on Molly Lane where he called police. However, he was unable to provide suspect information or other details.
Padilla was transported to a local hospital for treatment.
Detectives continued investigating and found a blood trail that led to 1744 Rose Avenue. They believed that additional shooting victims were inside and tried to gain entry by knocking on the door. Detectives broke in to find a 17-year-old Hispanic boy, brother of the victim, exiting through a rear window and fleeing over the fence. The minor, who lived at the house, was located and arrested.
Police searched the house and found no victim but did discover a large indoor marijuana growing operation. There were also indications that Padilla may have been shot in the house, possibly self-inflicted, and discounting his version of what happened.
The house was secured and a search warrant obtained. Police found short barreled shotgun and Ids belonging to Padilla and his brother.
Padilla was released from the hospital to be arrested and booked on charges of illegally cultivating marijuana and possession of a firearm in the act of committing a felony. His brother faces the same charges in juvenile court.
The investigation is ongoing. Detective Art Hively is asking anyone with information on the case to call him at 538-5728.