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Three Arrested After Reported Shooting, Pursuit #GVCopBeat

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bill-oxford-1680498-unsplashEarlier today, officers and deputies responded to a reported shooting at James Trailer Park.  Officers located and engaged in a pursuit of a vehicle matching the description of the suspect vehicle involved, after the driver failed to yield to law enforcement.  More information regarding that incident can be found here.

This evening, officers arrested three subjects for charges related to this incident:

Olivia Martinez, 28, of Grand Junction

  • Felony Menacing (F5)
  • Possession of a Weapon by a Previous Offender (F6)
  • Reckless Endangerment (M3)
  • Vehicular Eluding (F3)
  • Reckless Driving
  • Driving Under Revocation

Desiree Vallejos, 25, of Grand Junction

  • Accessory to Crime (Felony Menacing) (F5)
  • Accessory to Crime (Reckless Endangerment) (PO1)

David Mora, 20, of Grand Junction

  • Felony Menacing (F5)
  • Violation of a Protection Order (M2)

Booking photos of the suspects are not available at this time.

Joint Investigation Leads to Arrests in String of Auto Thefts #GVCopBeat

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A joint effort between the Mesa County Sheriff’s Office and the Grand Junction Police Department has led to the identification and arrest of subjects alleged to be involved in a string of auto thefts from the Front Range to the Western Slope.

Over the last week, officers and deputies in Mesa County took four reports of auto thefts, all involving similar circumstances.  Each vehicle was stolen from a local gym, with the keys taken from an unsecured locker.  In all cases, the license plates on the stolen vehicle were swapped with license plates stolen from a different vehicle.

On November 11, deputies with the Mesa County Sheriff’s Office were alerted via the car’s GPS tracking that one of the stolen vehicles was believed to be in the Clifton area.  The stolen vehicle was located, and was displaying stolen license plates.  The subjects associated to the stolen vehicle were contacted and interviewed.  They are identified as Hannah Johnson, 21, of Grand Junction, and Kobe Taylor, 18, of Fruita.  Through the course of the investigation, law enforcement was able to identify two additional suspects in the auto theft.

Surveillance footage from the gyms where the vehicles were stolen showed a subject matching the description of one of the identified suspects.  Additionally, it was discovered that this same female suspect had a history on the Front Range of auto thefts matching the characteristics of the crimes that occurred in Mesa County.

On Wednesday afternoon, officers attempted to contact two subjects regarding a shoplifting investigation in the parking lot of 2464 Highway 6 & 50.  When officers attempted to contact them, they fled in a white Kia Optima, which was later determined to be one of the stolen vehicles associated to the investigation into the string of auto thefts.  The occupants of the vehicle matched the descriptions of the suspects believed to be involved in the auto thefts.  The two subjects, identified as Patrick Jensen, 32, of Arizona, and Kambria Zentz, 22, of Arizona, ultimately abandoned the vehicle and fled on foot.  Law enforcement with the Grand Junction Police Department and the Mesa County Sheriff’s Office set up a perimeter in the area.  With the assistance of GJPD K9 Merlin and his handler, officers were able to track and apprehend Jensen and Zentz.

Ultimately, four subjects have been arrested for charges related to these incidents:

Patrick Jensen, 32, of Arizona

JENSEN,PATRICK 11-14
Jensen
  • First Degree Aggravated Motor Vehicle Theft Unlawfully attached Wrong Plates (F4)

Kambria Zentz, 22, of Arizona

    • First Degree Aggravated Motor Vehicle Theft (F4)
    • Fraud – Identity Theft – Uses Info to Obtain (F4)
    • Theft $750-$2,000 from Motor Vehicle (M1)
JOHNSON,HANNAH,FAITH 11-12
Johnson
  • Unauthorized Use of a Financial Transaction Device (M1)

Hannah Johnson, 21, of Grand Junction

  • Second Degree Aggravated Motor Vehicle Theft $20,000 or More (F5)

Kobe Taylor, 18, of Fruita

TAYLOR,KOBE, 11-12
Taylor
  • Second Degree Aggravated Motor Vehicle Theft $20,000 or More (F5)

This complex investigation remains active and ongoing.  Additional charges are possible as more information and evidence is revealed.  It’s gratifying to have the opportunity to work across jurisdictional boundaries with law enforcement partners, and we’re proud of the work done by the officers, deputies, and detectives on this case.

Reported Shooting Leads to Pursuit, Multiple Subjects Detained #GVCopBeat

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img_2658At 10:26 this morning, a subject called 9-1-1 to report shots fired in the James Trailer Park, located off of 28 ¼ Road, south of North Avenue. The reporting party stated that a subject in a black sedan had fired shots at a trailer in the park. No injuries were reported.

Officers responded immediately and were able to locate a vehicle matching the description of the suspect vehicle at 28 ¼ Road and North Avenue. Officers attempted to stop on the car, but the vehicle fled.  Due to the severity of the initial report, officers pursued the vehicle. The pursuit occurred through the central part of the city, lasting approximately seven minutes.  Due the proximity of the pursuit to Colorado Mesa University, the campus was briefly placed into lockdown out of an abundance of caution. Ultimately, the suspect vehicle returned to the area of the James Trailer Park and the occupants abandoned the vehicle and fled on foot. Law enforcement officers set up a perimeter in the area to search for the suspects and interviewed the reporting party and potential witnesses.  Multiple subjects have been detained at the scene for further questioning.  However, no arrests have been made at this time.

This investigation remains active and ongoing.  Officers continue to conduct interviews, search for evidence, and develop leads.  Anyone with information that could aid in the investigation should call non-emergency dispatch at 970.242.6707.

Additional Arrests Result from DTF Operation #GVCopBeat

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On Tuesday, November 5th, 2019, nine felony drug arrests were made as a result of an extensive investigation led by the Western Colorado Drug Task Force.  More information about that investigation can be found here.  Since that time, three additional arrests have been made in connection with that case.

  • Jennifer Marie Cochran, 30, of Grand Junction
    COCHRAN
    Cochran
    • Conspiracy to Distribute a Schedule II Controlled Substance (DF1)
    • Unlawful Possession of a Schedule II Controlled Substance (DF4)
    • Special Offender (DF1)

 

  • Bradley Nichols, 33, of Grand Junction
    NICHOLS
    Nichols
    • Conspiracy to Distribute a Schedule I Controlled Substance (DF1)
    • Conspiracy to Distribute a Schedule II Controlled Substance (DF1)
    • Special Offender (DF1)
    • Unlawful Possession of a Schedule I Controlled Substance (DF4)
    • Unlawful Possession of a Schedule II Controlled Substance (DF4)

 

  • Stephanie Pinnt, 29, of Grand Junction
    PINNT STEPH
    Pinnt
    • Unlawful Distribution of a Schedule I Controlled Substance (DF3)
    • Unlawful Possession of a Schedule I Controlled Substance (DF4)
    • Unlawful Possession of a Schedule II Controlled Substance (DF4)

 

The Western Colorado Drug Task Force is a combined effort consisting of detectives from both the Grand Junction Police Department and the Mesa County Sheriff’s Office.  This investigation benefited from close cooperation with the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Front Range Task Force (a multi-jurisdictional drug enforcement collaboration on the Front Range), the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms, and the 21st Judicial District Attorney’s Office.

Grand Junction Police Department K9 Selected for Donation of Body Armor #GVCopBeat

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Merlin trading card K9
Photo credit: Bair Paws Photography

Grand Junction Police Department’s K9 Merlin will receive a bullet and stab protective vest thanks to a charitable donation from non-profit organization Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. K9 Merlin’s vest is sponsored by Team Wendy and will be embroidered with the sentiment “This gift of protection provided by Team Wendy”. Delivery is expected within eight to ten weeks.

Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. is a 501c (3) charity located in East Taunton, MA whose mission is to provide bullet and stab protective vests and other assistance to dogs of law enforcement and related agencies throughout the United States. The non-profit was established in 2009 to assist law enforcement agencies with this potentially lifesaving body armor for their four-legged K9 officers. Since its inception, Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. provided over 3,500 U.S. made, custom fitted, NIJ certified protective vests, in 50 states, through private and corporate donations, at a value of $6.9 million dollars.

The program is open to dogs actively employed in the U.S. with law enforcement or related agencies who are certified and at least 20 months of age. New K9 graduates, as well as K9s with expired vests, are eligible to participate.

The donation to provide one protective vest for a law enforcement K9 is $950.00. Each vest has a value between $1,744 – $2,283 and a five-year warranty, and an average weight of 4-5 lbs. There is an estimated 30,000 law enforcement K9s throughout the United States. For more information or to learn about volunteer opportunities, please call 508-824-6978. Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. provides information, lists events, and accepts tax-deductible donations of any denomination at http://www.vik9s.org or mailed to P.O. Box 9 East Taunton, MA 02718.

Donation Made to the Center for Children to Provide Needed Equipment #GVCopBeat

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IMG_3922The important role of up-to-date technology in the successful investigation and prosecution of crimes is a topic that Jordan Huslig is passionate about.  It’s something that he’s tasked with every day in his career as a Digital Forensic Analyst for the Grand Junction Police Department.  His training and education as it pertains to the handling of video, audio, and other forms of digital evidence is extensive.  In fact, Jordan maintains a skilled certification that only roughly 60 other people in the world have obtained.

So, when Jordan learned that the Center for Children was in need of some additional, updated equipment, he took note.  The Center for Children is a hub of services for Mesa County and surrounding areas that provides interviews, counseling, and intervention to children and families who have experienced abuse.  The highly trained staff at the Center for Children is a critical part of our community; the work they do not only lends itself to the successful prosecution of perpetrators of crimes against children, but they also invest in the recovery and well-being of young victims, helping them to move forward toward a healthy and happy future.

When Jordan learned that the Center for Children needed help in purchasing new equipment, he designed a fundraising wrist brand and, with support from the Grand Junction Police Department, he had 200 of them produced.  While at the Law Enforcement and Emergency Services Video Association (LEVA) conference in Denver in October, Jordan offered the bracelets to other attendees, in exchange for a donation to raise funds for the Center for Children.  His efforts were a success, even prompting a vendor at the conference to join forces with him to offer the chance to win a complimentary training course to anyone who chose to donate.  Additionally, LEVA graciously offered to make a generous donation to Jordan’s efforts, resulting in a $1000 gift to the Center for Children to go toward needed equipment.  Jordan was pleased to present the donation at the board meeting of the Center for Children this morning.

We’re so proud to have community-minded individuals like Jordan at the Grand Junction Police Department.  His efforts to support an organization like the Center for Children, which is an integral part of the safety mission of law enforcement in Mesa County and beyond, exemplifies the compassion and commitment of the public safety professionals in this community.  Please join us in a heartfelt thank you to Jordan, LEVA, and the other partners that made this donation possible.

IMG_3918
Pictured here: Dr. Bill Hilty, Board President for the Center for Children, Mistalynn Meyeraan, Executive Directer, Jordan Huslig, Digital Forensic Analyst with the GJPD, GJPD Chief of Police Doug Shoemaker, and Jody Lusby, Development/Outreach Coordinator for the Center for Children

Motorcycle Crash Results in Fatality #GVCopBeat

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IMG_0390On Tuesday evening at approximately 8:20pm, officers with the Grand Junction Police Department were dispatched to a motorcycle crash in the area of the 300 Block of South 1st Street, near the Amtrak station.  It was reported to dispatch that a motorcycle traveling eastbound had crashed into a concrete barrier.  While en route to that crash, officers encountered a separate motor vehicle crash near the intersection of 4th Street and Ute Avenue.  Subjects at the scene of the crash were performing CPR on an adult male.  Officers took over CPR until medical personnel arrived.  Sadly, the male was pronounced deceased at the scene.

Preliminary investigation indicates that several motorcycles were traveling southbound on 1st Street when one of the riders collided with a concrete barrier, resulting in the first dispatched crash.  The other riders who had been traveling with the crashed motorcyclist were attempting to return to the scene of that crash by turning northbound on 5th Street, and then westbound on Ute Avenue.  Witnesses state that one of the motorcyclists ran the red light at 4th Street and collided with a truck, which was headed southbound on 4th Street.

This information is very preliminary, and subject to change as more information is gathered.  An investigation into the totality of the circumstances surrounding the crash is ongoing.  The driver of the motorcycle involved in the initial crash on 1st Street was not seriously injured, nor was the adult male driver of the truck involved in the crash on 4th Street.  At this time, no citations have been issued as a result of either crash.  The Mesa County Coroner’s Office will be responsible for releasing the name of the deceased subject after appropriate notifications have been made.