Google Maps image of the suspect property from May 2015.
On Wednesday, November 4th, the Solano County Sheriff’s Office Stolen Vehicle Task Force arrested 46 year old Alejandro Delgadillo Caro of Vallejo in connection with a stolen vehicle dismantling operation (chop shop) previously discovered on the 400 block of Banning Way in Vallejo on October 20th, according to authorities.
The next day, on November 5th, patrol deputies arrested 60 year old Ernesto Diaz at his residence on the 400 block of Banning Way, the same location as the chop shop, also in connection with this case.
This investigation started back on October 9th, after the Solano County Sheriff’s Office Investigation Bureau received an anonymous tip through the Solano County Crime Stoppers hotline regarding the location of a stolen vehicle. Investigators with the Sheriff’s Office Stolen Vehicle Task Force conducted an investigation into the tip, which led to the service of a search warrant at the Banning Way location on Tuesday, October 20th.
Investigators found approximately 20 cars on the property that were in various stages of being dismantled. Six of the vehicles were confirmed as having been reported stolen, including a 1966 Corvette Stingray and a Bobcat tractor. Information obtained during the search warrant led investigators to a secondary address where they found two more stolen vehicles. On November 3rd, auto theft investigators located a stolen flatbed trailer in the 2000 block of Broadway Street. The trailer belonged with the Bobcat tractor recovered during the original search warrant.
The investigation then led detectives to the two primary suspects, Caro and Diaz.
Caro was charged with the same thing a year and a half ago. In April of 2014 he was arrested by Fairfield police, but once again in Vallejo, for operating a chop shop. According to the Daily Republic, he was found at a home near the corner of 14th and Georgia Streets, where he seemed to have both a vehicle theft and dismantling business going, together with illegal drug sales. He was booked into Solano County Jail on charges of vehicle theft and operating a chop shop, along with possession, sales, and transportation of controlled substances, maintaining a false compartment to conceal drugs, having a firearm together with controlled substances, and criminal conspiracy.
His arrest then stemmed from an investigation into Fairfield drug dealers, after Fairfield Police, along with the Solano County Sheriff’s department and their SWAT teams, served a search warrant at a location on the 3400 block of Ramsey Road. Enrique Tapia, 43, Omar Mendoza, 32, and Ranulfo Mendoza, 28, were arrested in the case, in which a handgun, two shotguns, five rifles, ammunition, Cocaine Hydrochloride, methamphetamine, and evidence of drug sales where found. Tapia faced the most serious charges, while the other two were booked for obstruction. Evidence led them to Caro’s residence and the chop shop location close by.
It was reported then by Fairfield police that Caro was already a convicted felon with prior arrests for possession of controlled substances and paraphernalia, sales of drugs, domestic violence, driving under the influence, and burglary.
This case highlights the importance of community involvement and partnerships. One alert citizen’s tip, along with the Crime Stoppers program directly led to the discovery of a chop shop operation and the recovery of nine stolen vehicles.
Read More: Daily Republic (April 2014)
CrimeVoice Staff contributed to this report