RIPON — As First Sgt. Steve Merchant recalls, it all started just before 5 PM on Monday, June 10th, after Ripon police officers were dispatched to a reported burglary at a home in the 1000 block of Ash Avenue, where the suspects in question had apparently shattered a glass door to gain entry.
Shortly thereafter, approximately one mile away on the west end of town, Ripon Police Chief Ed Ormonde caught sight of the alleged getaway vehicle.
Ormonde tailed the van out of town to Caswell Park, where he was joined by officer Erik Boger and a traffic stop was attempted. After the suspects failed to heed the stop, a short pursuit through the park saw six of them jump out of the vehicle as it fled and take off into the forest. One was arrested fairly quickly and without incident.
A search went immediately underway for the remaining five, and the Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Department was notified to keep an eye out on the other side of the Stanislaus River. At about 6 PM, deputies discovered two of them hiding along the river near Beacon Road.
Investigators are diligently working to identify the remaining three.
The suspects apprehended are as follows: Eric Francisco Silva and Edgar Felix of Riverbank, both 18, and a 17-year-old male from Modesto. Silva and Felix have been booked into the San Joaquin County Jail on suspicion of burglary, conspiracy, evasion, and resisting arrest, while their underage cohort was booked on the same charges at the San Joaquin County Juvenile Hall.
According to First Sgt. Merchant, stolen items recovered from the escape van included jewelry, ammunition, and electronics. While some had been linked to the Ripon burglary, Merchant went on to mention that additional items were later traced back to a burglary in Manteca.
Anyone with information regarding the burglaries or suspects at large is strongly encouraged to call Detective Alex Burgos at 599-0254.
The Modesto Bee: Police: 5 Ripon burglary suspects arrested after fleeing through Caswell