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Gualala Man Briefly Eludes Deputies in Night-Time Pursuit—Arrested Later That Night After Being Tracked Down

26-year-old Gualala Man Raymundo Moreles [Mugshot from the Mendocino County Sheriffs Office Booking Logs]

Around 10:43 p.m. on April 28, 2022, Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office deputies were patrolling the darkened Old Stage Highway in Gualala, a rural road connecting Point Arena and Gualala running inland and parallel to the Mendocino County coast.

Deputies would encounter a blue utility-terrain vehicle (also called a side-by-side) and notice it did not have any sort of license plate displayed. When they attempted to pull the vehicle over for the traffic infraction, rather than complying, the driver proceeded to flee.

Pursuing deputies described the UTV as reaching speeds of 70 miles/hour and crossing the road’s double-yellow lines in an effort to escape the pursuing deputies.

The pursuit seemed to end abruptly when deputies reported losing sight of the vehicle, seemingly disappearing into the rural area under the cover of night.

MCSO’s Captain Greg Van Patten told us the story did not end there.

He told us deputies determined 26-year-old Raymundo Moreles had traveled onto an adjacent dirt road their vehicles were unable to navigate.

Deputies remained in the area, searching for any sign of the blue UTV, and a collaboration with community members led to the identification of a person of interest, Raymundo Moreles.

Based on this intel, Captain Van Patten explained deputies went to Moreles’s residence and located him and the UTV they had pursued. There they place Moreles under arrest.

He was booked into the Mendocino County Jail on one felony charge of evading a police officer and two misdemeanors: one for DUI and one for a hit and run resulting in damage. Moreles was released on bail approximately seven hours after being booked.

It must be stated that the charges described have not been proven in a court of law. In accordance with the legal principle of the presumption of innocence, any individual described should be presumed innocent until proven guilty.

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Matt LaFever
Matt LaFever
I like to think of myself as a journalist for the everyman. Journalism has become a craft practiced by the urban elite. 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 if you know a story that needs told.

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