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Two theft suspects arrested in pursuit
The high-speed pursuit of two alleged auto burglars ended Saturday morning when police caused it to spin into a field on Geer Road just north of Santa Fe Avenue. The chase started at Central Valley High School. - photo by Courtesy of Ceres Police Department

Two men who were seen stealing items from cars in the Central Valley High School parking lot, fled from police Saturday morning and ended up crashing miles away.

At 9:02 a.m. police were called about the men in a green-colored van breaking into cars in the school lot at Service Road and Central Avenue. Officers arrived and spotted the 1995 Chevy Astro van leaving and when they tried to stop it, the driver fled. The pursuit went onto southbound Central Avenue, down eastbound Redwood Road to Lucas Road and then eastbound on Service Road, reaching speeds of up to 100 mph. The passenger began throwing stolen items out of the window. When the chase went onto southbound Geer Road, Officer James Riley used a "PIT maneuver" to cause the van to lose control. It skidded into a disked field near the KCFA radio station at Santa Fe and Geer and rolled over twice.

Both theft suspects were pulled from the vehicle. They complained of pain.

The van contained a number of stolen items from prior burglaries as well as stolen car parts. Police recovered a purse tossed from the vehicle on Service Road.

Sergio Rios, 38, of Modesto was booked for burglary, conspiracy to commit a crime, possession of stolen property and obstructing officers.

Samuel Fernandez, 27, of Ceres was charged with booked for burglary, conspiracy to commit a crime, possession of stolen property, leading officers on a pursuit and probation violation.


• ROBBERY SUSPECT LOOSE: CERES - Police are seeking the public's help with apprehending a man who assisted in the robbery of a homeowner in the 3400 block of South Central Avenue on Monday, May 13.

The homeowner and another man were in a shop behind his house when two individuals approached them at approximately 10:48 p.m. One individual, who goes by the street moniker of "Too Tall," pointed an handgun at the owner and demanded his wallet. The homeowner handed the wallet to the assailants and both suspects fled.

The victims do not personally know the suspects, however, recognized "Too Tall" from seeing him in the area and knew his moniker.

Officers also know "Too Tall," who is actually Ceres resident Robert William Hendy. He was positively identified by the victims in a photo line-up.

Officers searched the area and at 2:27 a.m. and Sgt. John King saw Hendy walking in the area of Central and Whitmore Avenue with another male. While taking Hendy into custody, the accomplice he was with, who is believed to be the second suspect, fled the area. A perimeter was established but the other man was not found.

Hendy was arrested for home invasion and resisting arrest.

The second suspect was described as a 25-35 year old white or light-skinned stocky Hispanic male standing 5-foot-6 to 5-foot-9. He may go by the street name "Green Eyes" or "Tino."

Anyone with information about this case or the at-large suspect is encouraged to call Detective Derek Perry at 538-5730.

• MAN ARRESTED FOR SHOOTING AT DRIVER: CERES - A Modesto man was arrested for shooting at a passing driver on Faith Home Road on Wednesday, May 15.

A Hughson man called police at 11:12 p.m. to report that he was shot at as he drove southbound on Faith Home Road from eastbound Hatch Road. The victim said the man was standing by a silver-colored car parked facing northbound off to the west side of the street parked under street lights. The suspect was waving his arms at the passing driver to flag his attention to get him to stop. Then the man raised a rifle and a loud shot rang out. The car and driver were not hit.

Officer Brittney England found the car, a Honda Civic, in the same spot and noticed a white male adult and female inside. The two were removed from the car at gunpoint and a stolen shotgun was located in the back seat.

Joshua Lankford, 26, of Modesto was arrested and charged with shooting at a moving vehicle and possession of stolen property.

• STALKER ARRESTED AFTER FIGHTING OFFICERS: CERES - A man who was stalking his ex-girlfriend, a female Walmart employee, was arrested early Friday morning after he made a scene inside the store and was later found sitting in her car armed with a knife.

The incident happened at 1:57 a.m. when Todd Masterson, 25, of Modesto, entered the store to find the woman and she hid in the back of the store. Employees told Masterson to leave but he refused. Officers searched the store's interior and his car but did not find him.

Officers Brittney England and Jon Vera located Masterson hiding inside the victim's car with the seat leaned back. He had a large folding knife in his lap. When the officers tried to make an arrest, Masterson did not comply with orders and was physically pulled from the vehicle. He fought both officers, failing to comply even after being struck several times with batons and fists. The fight did not end until Officer Julio Amador brought his canine and unleashed him to bit him.

Masterson sustained a broken nose in the incident. He was booked on charges of stalking and resisting arrest.

A judge issued an emergency protective order for the victim.

• THREE ARRESTED IN PARK: CERES - Three persons were arrested in Colony Park Estates Mobilehome Park for various charges on Saturday after one man fled from police the day before.

Omar Sanchez, 20, of Ceres showed up unit #152 at the park at approximately 7 p.m. He ran from Officer Jeremy Caron the day before. Officers surrounded the coach and first encountered Lorenzo Veralopez, 23, of Nevada sitting in a car. He was arrested because he had warrants issued by a Nevada agency and because he gave a false name. Police knocked on the door which was answered by Deborah Bates, 50, who was wanted for felony probation violations. She confirmed Sanchez was in a bedroom. When they entered he was attempting to hide. Police found him along with 2 ½ pounds of methamphetamine hidden in the floor as well as handgun and a shotgun.

Sanchez was booked for possession of meth and possession of meth for sale.

• DEPUTY PURSUIT ENDS: CERES - Ceres police assisted in apprehending three men who fled a stolen car at the end of a Sunday evening pursuit initiated by Sheriff's deputies.

The chase ended at 10:28 p.m. in the Eastgate area. Two suspects were arrested on Pomegranate Way by deputies while Ceres officers and canine Dex located and arrested Sylvester Carrillo, 25, hiding in a darkened area on Hyacinth Drive. Dex had to bite Carrillo on the arm to enable the arrest.

The names of the other suspects were not available.

Police found a loaded handgun in the stolen car.

• FIGHT LEADS TO ARREST: CERES - A man who police say was "extremely" under the influence of methamphetamine was arrested Saturday after he exposed himself to a female companion with whom he had a verbal altercation in an alley.

Police were called at 11:59 a.m. to the alley in the 2600 block of Magnolia Street over the fight. Police spotted Matthew Manuel, 29, of Modesto at Ninth and Lawrence streets. He began to jump fences into a backyard where he was grabbed by an officer. Manuel fought officers before he was arrested.

Police Lt. Brent Smith said Manuel was so drugged that he could not complete a sentence. He was taken to a Modesto hospital for the drawing of a blood sample to determine what was in his system and then he was booked on charges of possession of burglary tools, being under the influence of drugs and violation of probation.