SAN MATEO–This past Sunday was not a day of rest for at least one San Mateo community. In the early morning hours of August 24, residents in a unit block of South Grant Street received telephone notifications from the San Mateo Police Department informing them that an armed suspect wanted on suspicion of attempted murder may be hiding out in their neighborhood.
According to a police press release, earlier, at around 3:30 a.m., officers responded to reports of shots being fired in the vicinity. Arriving at the scene, they came upon a 22-year-old male San Mateo resident lying in the street with life-threatening gunshot wounds to the upper body. The victim was rushed to a nearby hospital where he is reported to be in critical but stable condition.
Believing the suspect might still be in the area, officers set up a perimeter and searched neighboring backyards. When their search came up empty, police notified the community. Meanwhile, according to Sgt. Rick Decker of the San Mateo Police Department, an investigation by detectives linked the suspect to a relative’s residence on North Claremont Street in San Mateo. Taking all precautions with an armed and dangerous criminal on the loose, they called in the North County Regional SWAT Team.
Around 2:15 p.m., the SWAT Team served a search warrant on the residence, where they found the suspect, Enoc Carlos Gonzalez, 18, a resident of East Palo Alto. Gonzalez was taken into custody without incident and booked into the San Mateo County Jail.
“This was a violent and brazen act that occurred outdoors and in public, and our department committed all necessary resources to identifying and subsequently locating this suspect before he could further threaten our community,” said Sgt. Decker.
Police are still trying to determine a motive for the shooting. “At this time, detectives are still exploring a couple different motives for the crime, one of which being if it relates to gang activity,” according to Sgt. Decker. “Working with our Crime Reduction Unit (Gang Intelligence), their narrowing down if that in fact was the primary motive for the shooting.”
What a sense of relief residents must have felt when they received a follow-up notification letting them know the police operation was complete and the suspect had been apprehended and taken safely into custody. Perhaps they were able to snatch a few hours of rest before Sunday came to a close.
Anyone with information relating to this crime is urged to contact the SMPD:
SMPD Investigations General Number: 650-522-7650
SMPD Secret Witness Line: 650-522-7676
San Mateo County Times: Man shot, critically injured on San Mateo street; suspect arrested