News release - 8/7/2014

Published 8/7/2014 (all press releases for this day)


Jeri Williams
Chief of Police
Oxnard Police Department

R. Jason Benites
Assistant Chief

Scott Whitney
Assistant Chief

OXNARD POLICE DEPARTMENT

NEWS RELEASE

INCIDENT: Operation Safer and Stronger-Firearms Strike Team (FAST) and Directed Patrol Efforts
DATE/TIME: July-2014
LOCATION: City of Oxnard
PREPARED BY: Eric S. Sonstegard, Commander
CONTACT PERSON &
CONTACT INFO:
Commander Eric S. Sonstegard, (805) 385-7801, eric.sonstegard@oxnardpd.org 

DETAILS: At the beginning of 2014, the Oxnard Police Department launched the Operation Safer and Stronger initiative, as well as the Firearms Strike Team (FAST) led by the Violent Crimes Unit, to proactively remove firearms from prohibited persons in the city. The objective of the initiative and FAST is to reduce gun violence in Oxnard through education, intervention, and enforcement.
 
During the month of July, the Oxnard Police Department seized twenty-one (21) firearms through directed patrols, probation and parole searches, and the services of search warrants. Sixteen (16) of those firearms were seized from persons being arrested.
 

  • On July 4, 2014, Genaro Cortes, a 28-year old Oxnard resident, fled from Special Enforcement Unit (SEU) officers. Cortes was quickly apprehended and found in possession of a loaded handgun in his waistband. Cortes was arrested for numerous firearms violations including being a person not registered as the owner in possession of a firearm.
  • On July 20, 2014, Arthur Chavira, a 22-year old Oxnard resident, fled from SEU officers during a traffic stop. He was apprehended a short time later and found to be in possession of a .38 caliber handgun. Chavira was arrested for numerous firearms violations including being a felon in possession of a firearm.
  • On July 24, 2014, Christopher Russell, a 27-year old Oxnard resident, fled from SEU officers during a traffic stop with a loaded handgun in his hand and was apprehended a short time later. Russell was arrested for felon in possession of a firearm.
  • On July 31, 2014, Paul Perez, a 31-year old Port Hueneme resident, was contacted by officers at the scene of a disturbance at the Sea Rounders bar and found to have been in possession of a loaded handgun. Perez was arrested for numerous violations including a probationer in possession of a firearm.

 
Since January 1st, Oxnard officers have made sixty-four (64) firearms-related arrests. The Oxnard Police Department has seized one-hundred and fifty-five (155) firearms year-to-date and we will continue to focus our efforts on prohibited persons in possession of firearms.
 
As an additional component of the Oxnard Police Department’s Operation Safer and Stronger initiative, the Department continued to increase its special patrols in the month of July. These additional patrols augmented our normal patrol staffing and were focused on contacting individuals that may be responsible for committing a high number of crimes.
 
On July 11, 2014, a series of warrant services and directed contacts led to the following arrests:
 

  • Sergio Zendejas, a 22-year old Oxnard resident, was arrested for an outstanding felony warrant. During a probation search of his bedroom, a .380 caliber handgun was recovered. Zendejas was arrested for felon in possession of a firearm.
  • Rafael Madera, a 25-year old Port Hueneme resident, was contacted by officers and found to be in possession of methamphetamine. Madera was arrested for possession of a controlled substance.
  • Omar Chavez, a 21-year old Oxnard resident, was contacted by officers during a warrant service and barricaded himself in a bedroom with his 7-year old brother. Officers were forced to breach a door to rescue the child and take Chavez into custody. Chavez was arrested for several felonies including false imprisonment and child endangerment in addition to his outstanding felony warrants.

 
Officers will continue these focused enforcement efforts throughout the coming months as we know a small number of offenders are responsible for a disproportionately high amount of the city’s criminal activity.
 
The Oxnard Police Department continues to encourage residents to be partners in public safety as part of the Operation Safer and Stronger initiative. Anyone with information regarding criminal activity is encouraged to contact the Oxnard Police Department at (805) 385-7600, or the Ventura County Crime Stoppers at (805) 222-8477 and www.venturacountycrimestoppers.org/contactus.
 
 
DATE / TIME PREPARED:  August 7, 2014 1000 hrs.
 



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