MERCED – Authorities arrested a man wanted on firearm violations after a pursuit that ended in a car crash Wednesday afternoon.
At about 4:00pm, detectives with the Merced Police Department and the Gang Violence Suppression Unit tried to stop and apprehend 28 year old Mark Whitaker. Whitaker had an outstanding warrant for being a felon in possession of a firearm.
Authorities spotted Whitaker on the 1600 block of Martin Luther King Junior Way but he didn’t stop for police. He fled, leading officers on a high speed chase that lasted almost six miles. Whitaker ended up crashing into a pole near the Atwater/Merced Expressway as he attempted to enter Highway 99. He fled on foot but was captured a short distance away.
An ambulance was called to check Whitaker following the crash, and he was taken to a hospital to be cleared by medics. He was later booked into the Merced County Jail on charges including reckless driving, evading officers, prohibited possession of firearms, resisting, and obstructing officers.
Stockton Police Investigate Homicide
STOCKTON – Police investigated the fatal shooting of a 20 year old man Sunday afternoon.
Shortly before 5:00pm, authorities responded to the area of West Lane and Knickerbocker drive for a report of a person shot. Arriving officers located a 20 year old man who had suffered at least one gunshot wound. He was pronounced deceased at the scene.
Detectives responded to the scene to investigate the shooting, however no suspect information or motive was available.
The area has been the scene of at least two other shootings this year, one of them fatal. At least one business in the shopping center appears to have since closed after the shootings.
Anyone with information regarding this case is encouraged to contact the Stockton Police Department at (209) 937-8377 or Crime Stoppers at (209) 946-0600 where callers can remain anonymous.
Explosives Found, Turlock Pursuit Suspect Arrested
TURLOCK – A 23 year old man was arrested after leading authorities on two pursuits, and the discovery of explosive devices.
Police say they were called May 5th to a gas station on the 100 block of North Tully Road for a report of a man who was asleep behind the wheel of a vehicle in the parking lot. Arriving officers suspected the man to be under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Authorities said the vehicle’s windows were heavily tinted, but the man could be seen awake and moving inside.
Officers asked the man to open the door, but he refused. They opened his vehicle door and asked him to get out, but he still ignored their orders.
The driver, later identified as 23 year old Jonathan Alan Lewis, then drove the vehicle in reverse, striking an officer. That officer was able to move away and escape injury.
Lewis fled the parking lot and sped north on Highway 99, leading officers on a pursuit. The pursuit was terminated for safety concerns near the area of Fulkerth Road and Golden State Boulevard. Officers later found the vehicle in Keyes, at which time Lewis fled again, striking a parked police motorcycle and almost hitting another officer.
Authorities later located the vehicle abandoned in Ceres. The vehicle was seized as evidence and towed to the Turlock Public Safety Facility where it would be stored until a search warrant was issued.
Police were able to perform a search of the vehicle for evidence on May 11th after obtaining a search warrant. During a search, an improvised explosive device was found inside the car. The discovery of the explosive device led to an evacuation of the Public Safety Facility and a request for assistance from the Stanislaus County Sheriff Bomb Squad. The bomb squad was able to safely remove the device and analyze it, confirming it to be an explosive.
Lewis was arrested in Solano County after leading authorities there on another pursuit. Turlock Police Detectives and investigators, the Stanislaus Sheriff Bomb Squad, and ATF agents served a warrant at his apartment Friday night on the 900 block of Pedras Road. Additional evidence was collected and seized by police.
Lewis faces charges of aggravated assault, hit and run, evading an officer, resisting arrest, and possession of a destructive device. He also faces charges for crimes committed in Solano County.
Anyone with information regarding this case is encouraged to contact Officer Richard Fortado at (209) 664-7399 or the Tip Line at (209) 668-5550 extension 6780.
Vehicle of Interest Sought in Homicide of Door Dash Driver
MODESTO – Investigators with the Modesto Police Department are seeking the public’s help identifying a vehicle of interest in the shooting death of a Door Dash delivery driver.
Andrew Satavu, 56, was found shot next to his vehicle on April 18th after delivering food on the 1600 block of Gardenia Road. Life saving efforts were performed but Satavu died at the scene.
Detectives with the Violent Crimes Unit are continuing their work on the case and ask anyone who may have information to please come forward.
The vehicle in the video appears to be a late 90’s 4-door Toyota Camry.
Anyone with information regarding the vehicle of interest is encouraged to contact Detective Ridenour at (209) 495-9844 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Crime Stoppers can also be contacted at (209) 521-4636 where callers can remain anonymous.
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