Sunday, May 28, 2023

[Update: Shelter in Place Lifted, Suspect at Large] Redwood Valley Neighborhood Sheltering in Place After Motorcycle Pursuit Suspect Bails Leaving Behind Firearm and Overheard Saying He’s ‘Not Going Back to Prison’

The motorcycle abandoned by the fleeing suspect lays on the ground to the left while the deputy’s vehicle is on the right. [Crop of a photo provided by Amber Duncan Lockhart]

A shelter in place order has been issued to residents in a Redwood Valley neighborhood after a suspect fled law enforcement on a motorcycle, bailed on foot in Redwood Valley, and now deputies are searching in the area of Zahadoom Way to Rancheria Road and from West Road east to the river. 

According to Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office Public Information Officer Captain Greg Van Patten, deputies reportedly found a pistol located in a bag left behind by the suspect. He added that an eyewitness may have heard the suspect say “something about not wanting to go back to prison while running away from the deputy.” 

Captain Van Patten said the incident began when a “deputy got into a pursuit with a motorcycle on West Road near the Rancheria and the rider bailed on foot.”

Captain Van Patten said there is an “active search right [now] with the assistance of two Sheriff’s K9s.” Scanner traffic also indicated law enforcement is utilizing unmanned aerial vehicles to search for the suspect. 

The suspect described a white male wearing a white t-shirt and blue jeans. He is described as “clean-shaven” over the scanner.

The Nixle alert sent out to residents stated: “Shelter in place for the area West Road of Redwood Valley from Zahadoom Way to Rancheria Road east to the river. Deputies are actively searching the area, the suspect is described as a white male adult last seen wearing a grey shirt and blue jeans. If you see the subject do not approach Dial 911.”

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UPDATE 8:32 p.m.

The dispatcher told responding officer over the radio the registered owner of the motorcycle has a criminal background associated with Lake County including participating in a police pursuit. A responding officer requested a photograph be sent of the registered owner.

UPDATE 8:53 p.m.

Amber Duncan Lockhart, the Redwood Valley resident who lives on the land where the suspect dumped his bag with a firearm inside, said the deputies told her husband that the firearm was a “glock with the numbers filed off.”

UPDATE 8:57 p.m.

A resident on the 2500 block of Road E reported to deputies a game camera on their property captured images of the suspect as he fled.

UPDATE 9:12 p.m.

The following updated was issued on the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office Facebook page:

SHELTER IN PLACE in Redwood Valley has been lifted.

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Earlier this evening the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office issued a Shelter In Place order in the Redwood Valley area due to a pursuit with a motorcycle. The area of the incident was near West Road and Road N and East Road to Gowan Way. The driver fled the scene and deputies and K9s were used in an attempt to apprehend the individual.

The individual is described as a white male adult wearing a torn gray t-shirt, blue jeans and red shoes.

If you have any information on this incident please call the Dispatch Communication Center at (707) 463-4086.

A press release with more information is being prepared and will be released soon.

UPDATE 9:45 p.m.

Dispatch reported that an anonymous reporting party described seeing an individual that matched the suspect’s description near the North State Street Overpass. Also, dispatch told officers a Redwood Valley resident reported the smell of marijuana outside of her residence and was concerned the suspect could be outside her home.

UPDATE 10:01 p.m.

Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office Public Information Officer Captain Greg Van Patten has confirmed that the suspect is still outstanding.

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  1. He’s probably mentally ill. It’s not his fault. Police should never have been called in. What if he gets aggressive and the police, abusers that they are, pounce on him and hurt him? I mean being possibly mentally ill, he’ll probably fight the police, and get them into positions where they fear he can grab their weapons and shoot them, or other innocent people, then these horrible police we have will do things like wail on him until they’re convinced he no longer poses a threat to them or bystanders. And that would be unnecessary force…and even police brutality….ABUSE…on someone who’s possibly mentally ill!
    They need to call off the police. Call some social workers instead. I’m sure they’ll find him. Talk him down, peaceful talk you know, that should work, and he’ll be no threat to people in their homes. In fact, it’s ridiculous for police to be expecting people to stay home and be on guard. I say call off the police, call in the social workers, tell people come on out of their homes and hey, if they encounter him, they too can simply talk to him and calm him down. No worries. Otherwise it could turn out this guy is mentally ill, which we never know until *after* the crime or violence or murder happens anyway, and then how would that look? “Mentally ill man shot and killed by police after he murders an elderly woman and attacks police officers”…..?
    We can’t have that.

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Matt LaFever
Matt LaFeverhttps://mendofever.com/
I like to think of myself as a reporter for the Average Joe. Journalism has become a craft defined largely by city dwellers on America's coasts. It’s time to take it back. I have been an Emerald Triangle resident since 2006 and this is year ten in Mendocino County. Please, email me at matthewplafever@gmail.com if you know a story that needs to be told.

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