Press release - Traffic stop leads to hazmat response; Man arrested

Published 11/22/2010 (all press releases for this day)

Oxnard Police Department

R. Jason Benites
Assistant Chief

Scott Whitney
Assistant Chief



INCIDENT: Traffic stop leads to hazmat response; Man arrested
DATE/TIME: 11-22-2010 at 0803 hours
LOCATION: 1200 block of Mercantile Street, Oxnard
VICTIM(S): Oxnard police officer
SUSPECT(S): Gerardo Tapia Aguilar, 27 years, of Oxnard
SUSPECT VEHICLE(S): Silver 2002 Nissan Altima
PREPARED BY: Tom Chronister, Commander
Commander Tom Chronister
805-385-7746 or


Today at 8:03 A.M., Oxnard police stopped a silver 2002 Nissan Altima in the 1200 block of Mercantile Street for illegal window tint. The driver, Gerardo Tapia Aguilar, of Oxnard, was the sole occupant. Officers determined Aguilar was driving on a suspended driver license. While preparing to impound the vehicle for the license violation, officers conducted an inventory search of the vehicle.

One officer opened a plastic bag found in the car and inadvertently dispersed a powdery substance contained in the bag. The officer immediately became ill when the powder came in contact with his face. Another officer on scene immediately transported the ill officer to St. John’s Regional Medical Center for treatment. The vehicle was isolated and a hazardous materials unit from the Oxnard Fire Department responded to assess the powder and decontaminate the scene. Streets surrounding the traffic stop were closed to traffic until 10:17 A.M.

Oxnard Fire could not positively identify the powder as there was only a residual amount in the bag. The affected officer was treated at the hospital and released. He is expected to return to work later this week.

A subsequent search of the vehicle located methamphetamines, narcotics paraphernalia and a loaded handgun. Aguilar was arrested and transported to the Oxnard police station for booking.

Aguilar, who was out on bail for two previous felony arrests for drugs and weapons violations, faces fresh charges of possession of methamphetamines, possession of narcotics paraphernalia, and possession of a loaded .22 caliber handgun. He will be booked into the Ventura County later today. Bail is estimated at $100,000.

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   Nov 2010