SANTA ROSA – Super Bowl Sunday began with a lot of action for the Sonoma County Sheriff’s and SWAT team. They had a tip that a man currently out of bail was selling drugs and guns out of his house. They obtained a search warrant for the house on Leddy Avenue and went about their plans to serve it with a minimum of risk to themselves and the neighborhood.
Edward Alexis Martinez, 28, had been arrested in November for possession of methamphetamine for sale and possession of drug paraphernalia. According to Sergeant Michael Raasch of the County Sheriff’s Property Crimes Investigation Unit, Martinez was also a known gang member. He had a court date set for January 27, which he missed, resulting in a warrant issued for his arrest.
Due to the nature of his criminal history and the tip that he had weapons in the house, the Sheriff’s detectives used extra caution in calling the SWAT team out to assist with the serving of the warrants. They approached the house at 6:20 in the morning. As it turned out, they ended up needing additional help, as three pit bull terrier dogs greeted them aggressively when they arrived. Sonoma County Animal Control officers helped control the animals, which were detained in their vehicle.
The team also found eight people in the house, and detained all of them at least temporarily, and eventually. Martinez was identified, and true to form had some meth on him. Detectives also located an AK-47 assault rifle in his home that was linked to him. 25-year-old Nicholas Brian Hoffman, visiting from Healdsburg (18 miles north of Santa Rosa) was arrested pursuant to two felony no bail warrants. Another friend, Felix John Miller Jr., 25 of Santa Rosa, initially refused to leave the house in spite of the requests of the SWAT team and detectives. Miller had himself been arrested in October on drug charges. He eventually complied, but gave cause for an arrest on charges of delaying or resisting arrest. Additional charges may be added as detectives discern his motives for resisting. His bail, however, was set at a relatively low $2,500, indicating his reluctance to come out was more in line with his just being a troublemaker.
Edward Martinez, the original target of the actions, was arrested on charges of being a felon in possession of a firearm, possession of an assault weapon, and possession of methamphetamine. His bail was set at $200,000, while Hoffman was not granted bail due to his felony warrants. The remaining 5 people were not detained, and perhaps found a quieter location to watch the Seahawks defeat the Broncos in the Super Bowl later that afternoon.
Press Democrat: Three arrested in SWAT search of Santa Rosa home