Seaside Deals with a Rash of Shootings

SEASIDE—The City of Seaside is dealing with recent shootings that have plagued the area since September.

Enrique Velasco

The most recent shooting resulted in the death of a 20-year-old known gang member.  At about 11:45 p.m., the Seaside Police Department received reports of shots fired in the area of San Lucas Street and Olympia Avenue.  As officers were responding they received an additional call of a possible victim.  When authorities arrived they found a male victim with a gun shoot wound.  The victim was pronounced dead at the scene.

That victim was Jorge Diaz, 20, of Seaside. This was the second attempt on his life.  Diaz survived an August 23 shooting where two men shot him in front of a Monterey County Health Clinic in Marina.  The two men that shot him that day have been arrested.

Just days before that incident, the Seaside Police Department made contact with a known gang member in the area of San Lucas Street.  Enrique Velasco, 18, of Seaside attempted to conceal a firearm in plain view of the police but he was quickly apprehended without further incident.  He was booked in the Monterey County Jail on numerous firearm charges as well gang enhancement.

About an hour before the arrest of Velasco, police were investigating a report of several shots heard in the area of Soto Street. They did not find any evidence of a shooting but they did learn of a male that was being treated at a local hospital for a gunshot wound.

In the early part of October police responded to another reported shooting on Coe Avenue.  Two males who were involved in the shooting were hit by bullets and were treated at a local hospital and are expected to survive from their injuries.

“We do not believe that we are in a middle of a gang war,” Seaside Police Chief Vicki Myers said.  “We can trace these shootings back to three or four core incidences, they are just retaliation.”

The City of Seaside is combating this recent rise in shooting by using social media to inform the residents about what is happening in their community.  When Chief Myers took office she only had two neighborhood-watch programs. That has since grown significantly with the help of the police sponsored community meetings.

The Street Crime Unit has been restructured to include the members of the Investigation Unit. The Specialized Unit now has the expertise along with the ability to respond to an incident quickly, day or night.

The City of Seaside has had two homicides year-to-date as compared to only one last year.  They have seen a tenth of percentage point drop in the amount of aggravated assaults since last year, from 7.0 to 6.9.  The city has seen a significant rise in the amount of shooting through the month of September, from eight last year to 18 year-to-date.

According to the Seaside Police Department they have seized 33 weapons or an average of 4 per month.  They have made contact with 232 gang members.

The Seaside Police Department has enlisted the help of the Monterey County Gang Task Force.  Year-to-date they have spent 123 hours in the City of Seaside.  They have spent four of those 123 hours on gang surveillance, made 119 traffic stops, conducted 30 field interviews and seized two weapons.

Read More:

KION: Man Shot at Marina Health Clinic Later Gunned down in Seaside

Monterey County Weekly: Shootings, Gang Violence on the Rise in Seaside

Seaside Deals with a Rash of Shootings was last modified: January 11th, 2019 by admin
Categories: Monterey
Tags: shooting