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Loved Ones Mourn Loss of Ceres Woman Killed in Shooting

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CERES – A woman shot and killed last week was identified on a GoFundMe page where her loved ones are seeking help with funeral costs.

Yessica Mendoza was 29 years old. She was shot Thursday night on the 3900 block of Suncrest Drive in Ceres. She was a young mother of three children.

At about 9:17pm Thursday, police received a call reporting a person shot. The caller reported her husband’s friend had just shot a woman. Authorities also received another phone call indicating the woman had shot herself.

Authorities at the scene said the suspect, identified as 29 year old Daniel Garcia, was staying at the residence where the shooting occurred. They believe Yessica came over to visit at some point in the day.

Arriving officers found the victim down in the grass bleeding from at least one gunshot wound. They began lifesaving measures on the woman and performed CPR until medics arrived. Police officers searched the home to make sure there were no suspects inside and no one else was injured, escorting the occupants out of the house.

Garcia was detained as a person of interest after declining to cooperate with authorities. A small caliber handgun was later located near the victim in the grass.

Garcia was taken to the Ceres Police Department to be interviewed by detectives, and was later booked into the Stanislaus County Safety Center for homicide. Authorities say he and the victim have children together.

The victim was rushed to a hospital by ambulance where she died from her injuries. A GoFundMe account was created to help with funeral costs.

“We weren’t prepared for such a tragedy. We need all the help we can get to give her a proper burial and lay her body to rest”

If you would like to donate, you can do so via GoFundMe by CLICKING HERE.

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Teen Suffers Head Wound in Highway Shooting, Suspects Arrested

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STOCKTON – Investigators with the California Highway Patrol arrested a man suspected of being involved in a shooting that wounded a teen Monday afternoon.

The incident happened shortly after 3:00pm near the area of Highway 99 and Kettleman Lane in Lodi. According to the California Highway Patrol, the driver of a Nissan Altima fired a gun several times at the victim vehicle, striking a teenage passenger in the head. The driver of the victim vehicle drove the teen to Lodi Memorial Hospital for care. Valley Division CHP Investigators responded to work the case.

Moses Mercado, a 21 year old resident of Lodi, was identified as a suspect during the course of the investigation. Investigators located and arrested Mercado after a brief pursuit in South Stockton that ended on South California near Worth Street. A passenger of the Nissan Altima, 21 year old Bella Villanueva of Ripon, was also arrested. Villanueva faces charges of aiding and abetting, conspiracy, and concealing evidence.

Mercado was charged with attempted murder, carrying a loaded firearm with a previous felony conviction, being a felon in possession of a firearm, conspiracy to commit a crime, being a prohibited person in possession of ammunition, and shooting at an inhabited vehicle. He is in custody without bail and due in court on June 30th at 1:30pm.

A third suspect, 29 year old Edgar Hernandez of Stockton, was arrested and charged with carrying a loaded unregistered firearm concealed in a vehicle.

“We want to assure the public that these acts of violence are not random, but are often targeted attacks between parties that know each other,” said Commander Mel Hutsell of the Stockton CHP Office. “We take these types of incidents very seriously and are committed to ensuring public safety.”

Anyone with information regarding this case is encouraged to contact CHP Investigations at (916) 731-6300.

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Brush Fire Fills Skies with Smoke

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SALIDA – A brush fire in the north end of Stanislaus County filled the skies over Modesto and neighboring communities with smoke Monday and Tuesday.

The fire was reported in San Joaquin County initially, but jumped the Stanislaus River late Monday afternoon. The fire burned in heavy brush along the river near the 10100 block of Beckwith Road.

Early indications suggest the fire to have burned 150-200 acres, however at time of publication an exact measurement was not available.

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Airport Neighborhood Shooting Investigated

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MODESTO – One person was rushed to a hospital after a report of a person shot Monday Afternoon.

The incident happened shortly after 1:30pm near the intersection of Kerr Avenue and Tenaya Drive. An ambulance left with one person and a sheriff deputy following close behind.

The area was closed off with crime scene tape as deputies examined the scene. Evidence technicians and investigators responded as well.

No further details were available at time of publication.

Anyone with information regarding this case is encouraged to contact the Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Office or Crime Stoppers at (209) 521-4636 where callers can remain anonymous.

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