Release Date/Time: 7/18/2019 9:43 AM
Incident:Cold Case Murder Arrest
Date: Thursday, 7/16/2019
Time: 6:45 pm
Location:1300 Block Las Cruces Court
Saturday, July 13th, a single male suspect approached two people in front of 807 Elkington Street and shot them with a fully automatic .40 caliber handgun. The two victims, ages 28 and 19, were transported to Natividad Medical Center with multiple injuries. Both victims are extremely lucky, and both were listed in stable condition. Patrol officers were able to collect video from the area and identified a possible suspect vehicle as a white cargo van. Detectives took over the case, canvassed for additional video and were able to further identify the van. The investigation led to the identification of the suspect, 28-year-old Andrew Alvarado, a Salinas Norteno gang member.
Alvarado was also tentatively identified as a suspect in a cold-case murder that had occurred in 2017. At the time of the Elkington shooting, investigative leads were being finalized resulting in sufficient probable cause to arrest Alvarado. Members from the Violence Suppression Task Force, to include Federal partners, and detectives conducted surveillance of Alvarado. While a search warrant was being written by detectives, and reviewed by a judge, undercover officers observed Alvarado entering a house in the 1300 block of Las Cruces Court.
On 07/16/19, at approximately 6:45 PM, Salinas Police Department SWAT team served the search warrant served at the Las Cruces Court address. The residence was surrounded, and following a 37 minute-stand-off, Alvarado emerged from the residence and was arrested. The search revealed three firearms (to include an assault rifle), illegal gun magazines, ammunition and gang indicia hidden in the residence.Alvarado was transported to the Monterey County Jail and booked for the 2017 Murder and Attempted Murder. The charges related to the Elkington shooting, the gun possession and gang enhancements will follow shortly.
Details on the 2017 homicide are as follows:
On 09-10-17, at approximately 1834 hours, officers responded to 255 E. Bolivar St. on the report of a shooting with two victims. When officers arrived, they located 49-year-old Martin Rocha and a 29-year-old male suffering from multiple gunshot wounds. Unfortunately, Mr. Rocha did not survive and was pronounced deceased at the scene. The second victim was transported to Natividad Medical Center and survived with permanent injuries.
The two men had been working on a vehicle in the driveway when they were approached by two males. The suspects pulled out handguns and shot both victims. After the shooting, the suspects ran to an awaiting vehicle and fled. Andrew Alvarado has been identified as one of the shooters.
Detectives believe Andrew Alvarado carried out heinous and cowardly attacks on unsuspecting victims, and he may have been involved in other violent crimes. The 2017 murder and this weekend's attempted murder are still under investigation. Anyone with information is encouraged to call the Salinas Police Department at (831) 758-7321. If you would like to remain anonymous, you can call the Salinas Police Department Tip Line at (831) 775-4222.
Release Authorized by:Miguel Cabrera