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Stockton Officer, Suspect Killed in Shooting

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STOCKTON – A police officer and suspect both died after a shooting that began as a domestic violence investigation Tuesday morning.

At about 9:45am dispatchers received a report of a disturbance on the 4400 block of La Cresta Way. The person who called said they heard screaming and saw a woman with a ripped shirt who was bleeding and appeared to have been assaulted.

Police Officer Jimmy Inn was dispatched to the call and arrived on scene shortly after 10:00am and knocked on the door. Inn was met with a voice from inside the home that said “Hey police,” and a man opened the door and shot him multiple times.

A second officer, Pancho Freer, arrived on scene just as the shooting occurred. Authorities said the suspect was seen standing over Officer Inn holding a gun. The suspect then fired at Freer, striking his patrol car. Officer Freer shot back from inside his patrol car, causing the suspect to retreat back into his home.

The suspect then came out again, this time holding his eight year old son. Officer Freer gave the suspect commands, but he refused and began to strangle the child. A nearby witness then tackled the suspect, freeing the child. Officer Freer then fired his weapon multiple times, hitting the suspect.

Life saving measures were performed on both the suspect and Officer Inn. They were both taken to hospitals, but both died from their injuries. The eight year old boy was medically cleared and then released to his mother.

A multi agency investigation was launched, closing off much of the neighborhood all day Tuesday. Agencies including California Department of Justice, ATF, and District Attorney Investigators all responded to assist in the investigation.

Officer Jimmy Inn was hired in December of 2015 and assigned to the field operations division. He was a member of the police department’s honor guard. He is survived by his wife Tela, who is also a Stockton Police Officer, a seven month old son and two step children ages 12 and 14.

Officer Pancho Freer was placed on administrative leave for three days. He was hired in April of 2012 and assigned to the Field Operations Division.

The suspect was identified late Tuesday night as 30 year old Lance Lowe. A Glock handgun was found during a search of his residence.

The female victim in the case was said to have walked away from the scene shortly before officers arrived. Investigators are trying to find her to get a statement.

Carlos Rodriguez is an Emmy Award winning photojournalist specializing in public safety and natural disasters. His passion for local news stems from a deep commitment to his community, with a selfless mission to inform the citizens of the valley. As he worked on assignment for 19 days at the devastating Camp Fire in Paradise, California, he spent most of his time helping survivors contact their loved ones to let them know they were ok. Carlos is a veteran of Univision, FOX, and Telemundo TV stations and a native of Modesto, California.

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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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