Press Releases

Final Briefing for Chief Kelly McMillin

The Salinas Police Department would like to announce the retirement of Chief Kelly McMillin.  His final briefing will be Friday, September 30, 2016 at 7:30 a.m. in the Rotunda at City Hall.

Kelly McMillin began his law enforcement career in 1984 as a Deputy with the San Benito County Sheriff's Department.  In 1986, he transferred to the San Diego County Sheriff's Department, then joined the Salinas Police Department in 1988.  As a Salinas Police Officer, Kelly worked patrol, several gang units, vice/narcotics, administration, and various assignments as a detective, including homicide.  He was a SWAT operator, team leader, and tactical commander.

Kelly has held the ranks of Officer, Corporal, Sergeant, Lieutenant, Commander, and Deputy Chief.  He was appointed Chief of the Salinas Police Department on June 11, 2012, and was the first Chief to be promoted from within the ranks since 1965.  

Since becoming a police officer, Kelly has earned his Associate's Degree from Hartnell College, his BA from Saint Mary's College of California, and his Master of Public Policy from the Panetta Institute at California State University, Monterey Bay.  He is a 2003 graduate of the 213th session of the FBI National Academy at Quantico, Virginia.  Kelly was recognized by the White House as a "Champion of Change" for his work in youth violence prevention in 2012.  

Kelly is married to his wife Teresa, a Physician Assistant who owns a cosmetic dermatology practice in Salinas.  Their son Liam is a Cadet at the United States Military Academy at West Point.  

Grand Theft

The Salinas Police Department is asking for assistance in locating these people.  They are 26-year-old Richard Neal and 25-year-old Jennifer Rubalcava.  On September 4, 2016 they both stole over $1600 worth of merchandise from Kohl's in Salinas.  Anyone with information is asked to contact Detective Byron Gansen at 831-758-7137 or email at [email protected].

Threats to Schools

Salinas Police Department was made aware of a Facebook post that threatened Monterey County Schools. The post included a profile photo of a scary, maniacal looking clown. The post indicated that every school in Monterey County was going to be bombed and that the person had 'everything prepared.” A following post indicated that the person was going to engage in school shootings from Salinas to King City.

The investigation resulted in the identification of a residential address in Greenfield, Ca. Greenfield Police were notified and officers responded to the residence. They contacted a 17-year old male as well as his parents. Officers obtained permission to search and no weapons or explosive materials were located. The juvenile male was detained, transported to Greenfield Police Department and interviewed. The suspect admitted the post was a hoax and he thought it would be humorous. Greenfield PD's detective positively confirmed that the Facebook post originated from the juvenile's phone, which was confiscated as evidence. The suspect will be booked into Monterey County Juvenile Hall on a variety of threat-related felonies.

At this point, it is believed there is no credibility to the threats and that schools are in no danger as a result of this incident.  

Wanted Parolee / Felony with a Firearm / Possession of controlled substance for sales

VSU officers observed a parolee who was wanted and a second wanted subject exiting a vehicle in a north Salinas neighborhood. Officers knew the subjects from previous interactions as Norteno gang members. One of the suspects attempted to get into the residence but the front door was locked. Both wanted suspects fled from the front of the residence and VSU officers gave chase as the two suspects ran through the neighborhood.

One suspect jumped a small fence and threw a loaded XDM 9mm handgun but one of the officers was able to take him into custody without incident. The second VSU officer chased the wanted parolee and a loaded 38. Caliber revolver fell from his pants. The parolee began reaching into the waistband of his pants he was shot with the TASER.

The vehicle the suspects fled from contained of ¾ of a pound of heroin, approximately 2 pounds of methamphetamine and $14,126 in cash was located on the wanted parolee.

Cell Phone Sting

Release Date/Time: 9/26/2016 8:12 AM

Incident: Cell Phone Sting

Report #: Various

Date: Monday, 9/26/2016

Time: 7:50 AM

Location: Salinas

On Sunday morning, September 25th, three officers of the Salinas Police Department conducted a cell phone sting. An undercover officer in an unmarked car drove around the streets of Salinas looking for drivers who were using their cell phones. When the undercover officer saw someone on the phone while driving, he would advise one of the uniformed officers in a marked patrol car to swoop in and make the car stop.

In three hours the officers made 10 traffic stops, wrote 7 cell phone tickets, cited one driver for driving while unlicensed, and cited another driver for driving on a suspended license.

"It has been shown time and time again that using your cell phone while driving is very dangerous," said Sergeant Gerry Ross. "It's very tempting to answer that phone when someone calls but it is not worth someone getting hurt or killed. Find a place to pull over and call the person back."

Sergeant Ross said that drivers are starting to keep an eye out for police cars while using their phone. For this reason the officers plan to get more creative in their enforcement of the cell phone laws. Salinas Police also plan to use plain clothes officers on foot to look into cars as they drive by to spot cell phone use.

Funding for this Distracted Driving enforcement is provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Release Authorized by: Gerard Ross

Telephone: (831) 758-7250

Homicide

Release Date/Time: 9/21/2016 10:53 PM

Incident: Homicide

Date: Wednesday, 9/21/2016

Time: 5:48 PM

Location: 2200 block of North Main

On September 21, 2016, at approximately 5:48 pm, officers responded to the 2200 block of North Main Street for a victim of shooting. Upon arrival they found 26-year-old Rosendo Raul Lopez Arteaga suffering from multiple gunshot wounds. Arteaga was pronounced deceased at the scene.  Witnesses saw someone running through the parking lot after the shots were fired but nothing further.

This is being investigated as gang related and is the 32rd Homicide of the year. If anyone has information regarding this homicide, they are asked to contact Detective Rivera at (831) 758-7971 or Detective Schwener at (831) 758-7276. If you would like to remain anonymous, you can call the Salinas Police Department Tip Line at (831) 775-4222, or the We-Tip Line at 1-800-78 CRIME, or text information to the Text to the Text Tip Line with the code "SPD831" to "847411".

Release Authorized by: Sgt. Brian Johnson, Investigations Bureau

Telephone: (831) 758-7128

Court Sting / Pedestrian Sting

Release Date/Time: 9/20/2016 5:19 PM

Incident: Court Sting / Pedestrian Sting

Report #: Various

Date: Tuesday, 9/20/2016

Time: 4:21 PM

Location: 240 Church Street / Williams Road and Grandhaven Street

Today the Salinas Police Department conducted a Court Sting at the Monterey County Courthouse at 240 Church Street with five undercover officers, three motorcycle officers, and the traffic sergeant. Undercover officers sat in the courtroom and watched arraignments for defendants who were arrested for Driving Under the Influence and driving on a suspended license. Before court started the driver's license status for the defendants was checked to confirm whether or not the driver was validly licensed. After the arraignment of an unlicensed driver, an officer would follow the defendant out of the courtroom to see if the defendant entered a car and drove away. If the defendant drove off, the undercover officer would contact the motor officer who would conduct a traffic stop of the defendant.

The defendant would be cited for the violation and, when appropriate, the car would be towed for 30-days. Officers followed several defendants from the courthouse and the great majority of them got a ride from someone else or walked home. Three such defendants decided to drive away from their court appearance. Two were cited for driving on a suspended license and one was cited for driving while unlicensed. All three cars were impounded for 30-day holds.

After the court sting, the traffic sergeant and three motor officers decided to do a pedestrian sting. The pedestrian sting operation was set up at the intersection of Williams Road and Grandhaven Street. For approximately two hours an undercover officer crossed Williams Road in the crosswalk at that intersection. During that time span officers wrote 12 tickets for violation of the pedestrian right-of-way and 3 citation for use of cell phone while driving.

Funding for both operations was provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Release Authorized by: Gerard Ross

Telephone: (831) 758-7250

Homicide Victim Identification

Release Date/Time: 9/20/2016 3:38 PM

Incident: Homicide Victim Identification

Report #: 16-090927

Date: Tuesday, 9/20/2016

Time: 3:36 PM

Location: Lake St. and Bridge Alley

On September 16, 2016, officers were dispatched to Lake St. and Bridge Alley on the report of a shooting victim. Officers found a 23-year-old Kareem Jamal King, suffering from multiple gunshot wounds. King was transported to Natividad Medical Center (NMC) in critical condition with life-threatening injuries. A few hours later, medical personnel from NMC contacted Salinas Police and advised KIng had died from his injuries.

As with the other recent shootings that have occurred in the Chinatown area this year, there were very few witnesses that would come forward with information. The crime occurred during a time of day where several people are usually in the area, but the information about what occurred is scarce. King was standing in the area when he was approached by an unknown male. The suspect was described as an African-American male with a skinny build. He was wearing all black, with a black mask covering his face. After the shooting, the suspect may have fled southbound in Bridge Alley toward Market Way.

The Investigations Bureau is asking anyone who may have information regarding this shooting or may have seen the suspect fleeing the area, to contact Detective Ken Hendrickson at (831) 758-7129 or Detective Rudy Roman at (831) 758-7913.

The Salinas Police Department would also like to remind the community that we only want your information regarding any crime you have may knowledge. We are aware of the public's reluctance, especially in the Chinatown area, to come forward with information due to fear and will do everything possible to protect your identity. If you do not want to provide your personal information, you do not have to do so. If you would like to remain anonymous, you can call the Salinas Police Department Anonymous Tip Line at 831-775-4222, or the We-Tip Line at 1-800-78-CRIME, or text information to the Text Tip Line with the code "SPD831" to "847411".

Release Authorized by: Christopher Lane, Investigations Sergeant

Telephone: (831) 758-7496

Homicide Victim Identification

Release Date/Time: 9/19/2016 4:57 PM

Incident: Homicide Victim Identification

Date: Monday, 9/19/2016

Time: 4:55 PM

Location: 1 Bridge St.

On September 17, 2016, at approximately 7:20 am, Salinas Police officers were dispatched to a male down in the parking lot of 1 Bridge St. The victim was in between vehicles and could not be seen from the street. When officers arrived they found that the victim, 23-year-old Rafael Arturo Chavez, had suffered multiple gunshot wounds and was deceased. Chavez had been shot sometime during the early morning hours but the shooting was never called in to 911.

The Investigations Bureau is asking anyone who may have information regarding this shooting or may have seen the suspect fleeing the area, contact Detective Dave Poulin at (831) 758-7270 or Detective Stephen Craig at (831) 758-7929.

Chavez, who was a Salinas resident, is the 31st homicide in Salinas and the 7th in the Chinatown area this year.

The Salinas Police Department would also like to remind the community that we only want your information regarding any crime you may have knowledge. We are aware of the public's reluctance, especially in the Chinatown area, to come forward with information due to fear and will do everything possible to protect your identity. If you do not want to provide your personal information, you do not have to do so. If you would like to remain anonymous, you can call the Salinas Police Department Anonymous Tip Line at 831-775-4222, or the We-Tip Line at 1-800-78-CRIME, or text information to the Text Tip Line with the code "SPD831" to "847411".

Release Authorized by: Christopher Lane, Investigations Sergeant

Telephone: (831) 758-7496

Probation Sweep

VSU assisted Probation with a 'Probation Sweep” in the City of Salinas.  A list of subjects where selected who either had gang history or warrants for their arrest. Five subjects were arrested, one ballistic vest, one semi-auto handgun and 4.7 grams of methamphetamine were taken into custody during the operation. All subjects arrested were booked into the Monterey County Jail.

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