Press Releases

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.

Homicide

Release Date/Time: 9/17/2016 1:16 PM

Incident: Homicide

Report #: 16-090951

Date: Saturday, 9/17/2016

Time: 7:20 AM

Location: Parking Lot 1 Bridge St.

On September 17, 2016, at approximately 7:20 am, a reporting party called 911 to report finding a male slumped on the ground in the parking lot of 1 Bridge St. The caller did not know who the male was, or if they were just sleeping (which often occurs in this parking lot). When officers arrived, they found a 23-year-old Hispanic male deceased. The victim was found to be shot at least once but it is unknown how long the victim had been there. The victim was in between vehicles and could not be seen from the street.

During the initial investigation, detectives have learned of different people saying they heard 'fireworks” in the area during the night. The times referenced by those that heard anything vary from 2:30 am to 5:00 am this morning. No calls were received at Monterey County Communications (SPD dispatchers) regarding fireworks or gun shots during the evening or early morning hours.

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 Dave Poulin at (831) 758-7270 or Detective Stephen Craig at (831) 758-7929.

The identity of the victim is being withheld until proper notifications can be made to the family. This 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 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

Release Date/Time: 9/17/2016 12:15 PM

Incident: Homicide

Report #: 16-090927

Date: Saturday, 9/17/2016

Time: 4:05 PM

Location: Lake Street and Bridge Alley

On September 16, 2016, at approximately 4:05 pm, officers were dispatched to Lake St. and Bridge Alley on the report of a shooting victim. Officers found a 23-year-old black male suffering from multiple gunshot wounds. Officers provided initial medical aid until they were relieved by paramedics from Salinas Fire and American Medical Response Ambulance. the victim 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 the victim 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. The victim 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 identity of the victim is being withheld until the family is able to make notifications to their other family members. The motive for this shooting is unknown at this time. This is the 30th homicide in Salinas this year.

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

Shooting Update--Homicide

Release Date/Time: 9/17/2016 12:12 PM

Incident: Shooting Update--Homicide

Report #: 16-090221

Date: Saturday, 9/17/2016

Time: 12:09 PM

Location: 1300 Blk of Las Cruces Ct.

On September 5, 2016, the Salinas Police Department responded to a report of a shooting in the 1300 block of Las Cruces Ct. The victim of the shooting, 29 year-old Marcus Allen Jelks, was transported to Natividad Medical Center for treatment. On Friday, September 16th, detectives were contacted by the Monterey County Coroner's Office who advised Jelks had died as a result of the injuries he suffered in the shooting.

The shooting took place in a driveway in the 1300 block of Las Cruces Ct. Jelks was sitting as a passenger in a vehicle when he was approached by a male suspect. For unknown reasons, the male pulled a firearm and fired multiple times at Jelks. The male fled to an awaiting vehicle which sped out of the area. The information gathered in the investigation revealed Jelks may have been in an altercation in the area of Lake St. and Bridge Alley earlier in the day. It is unknown if that altercation had anything to do with Jelks being shot later in the evening. This homicide is the 29th in the City of Salinas this year.

The Investigations Bureau is asking anyone who may have information regarding this shooting or an altercation earlier in the day, to contact Detective Byron Gansen at (831) 758-7137 or at [email protected]; or Detective Arlene Currier at (831) 758-7125. 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

Barricaded Subject

Release Date/Time: 9/15/2016 11:41 PM

Incident: 5150 Standoff

Report #: 16 09 0887

Date: Thursday, 9/15/2016

Time: 11:26 PM

Location: Steinbeck Library

Officers responded to a report of a man with a gun in his waistband at the Steinbeck Library. When officers arrived they were told there was a suspicious person in the bathroom who said he had been chased by a man with a gun. The officers determined the men were one in the same and tried to contact the man in the bathroom who was later identified as a 32-year-old male with possible mental health issues. The man would not come out of the bathroom and claimed to have a gun pointed at the door. He refused to come out because he did not believe the officers were police. Officers began talking to the man and tried multiple ways to convince him they were a police officers. Employees and patrons of the library were evacuated.

The Negotiation Team and representatives of Monterey County Behavioral Health responded. After approximately four and a half hours, the man surrendered, came out of the bathroom, and was peacefully taken into custody.

He did not have a weapon. While alone in the bathroom he damaged a fan, lights, and had burned toilet paper in and attempt to set off the sprinklers. He was taken to a local hospital and admitted on a psychological hold.  

Officers from CDCR and Monterey County Parole assisted with perimeter security.

Release Authorized by: Cmdr. John C. Murray

Telephone: (831) 758-7250

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Question of the Day

My neighbors keep a rooster in their backyard. Is this legal?
 
No. The Salinas Municipal Code  prohibits any fowl or livestock to be kept as pets. This includes pigs, goats, sheep, chickens, ducks, etc. Roosters are especially bothersome because of the noise they create and the fact they are sometimes used for cockfights and gambling.
 
How many pets am I allowed to have at my house?
 
Salinas City residents are allowed to have four pets per household. This includes any combination, such...

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