For Immediate Release
Date: November 06, 2019 2:45 PM
Case Number: SR19-08284
Evasive Billfold and Vehicle Bandit Arrested
San Rafael, CA – On 11/06/19, Gonzalo Luna-Hernandez, a 43-year-old Salem, Oregon resident, was arrested for commercial burglary and vehicle theft along with additional charges after stealing a wallet and evading police in a stolen vehicle.
At 8:24 AM, San Rafael Police Dispatch received a 9-1-1 call from a victim who had their wallet stolen from an office at an Andersen Drive auto repair shop. The victim described a male suspect who entered through the open garage, made his way to the offices, and then stole a wallet and a set of keys from a work desk. The suspect was then observed fleeing in a black Audi sedan.
In less than a minute, an officer responding to the call observed the suspect vehicle in the area of Kerner Boulevard and Marian Court. The officer stopped the suspect and the vehicle yielded briefly. As the officer stepped out from his police car to make contact, the suspect sped away.
The officer attempted to catch up to the vehicle and lost it in the area of Fairfax Street and Canal Street.
A perimeter was in the process of being established when a second officer observed the vehicle at a high rate of speed enter onto northbound US-101 and accelerate heavily. Due to traffic, the officer was unable to catch up and the vehicle was able to escape.
A third officer who was positioned on the Irwin Street on-ramp to northbound US-101 observed the vehicle and attempted to catch up to the vehicle. The officer clocked the vehicle moving at more than 100 MPH. The officer attempted to stop the vehicle but the suspect began making dangerous evasive maneuvers that placed the public and the officer’s safety at risk. The pursuit was immediately terminated. The suspect was last seen headed towards Manuel T. Freitas Parkway.
About four minutes later, SRPD Dispatch received a 9-1-1 call from a motorist who reported that, earlier, they had observed the vehicle flee from the officer on the freeway and had just come across it parked at the intersection of Civic Center Drive and Redwood Highway.
The witness said that they saw the suspect exit the vehicle and walk toward the offices at the top of the hill. The witness also stated that the suspect may have had a gun or some other object in his hand.
Officers responded to the area and located the vehicle. It was unclear if the suspect had returned to the vehicle or if he was still on the hill. Officers cleared the vehicle and found it unoccupied. Officers also found a hatchet and evidence that the vehicle was possibly from Oregon.
Officers were in the beginning stages of alerting the office complexes and beginning a systematic search when a police detective observed the suspect returning to the scene where the car had been found.
As officers were contacting the suspect, identified as Luna-Hernandez, he attempted to discard the stolen wallet behind a bush but actually discarded his own wallet. Luna-Hernandez was taken into custody without further incident. Luna-Hernandez was found in possession of the stolen wallet.
SRPD detectives and dispatch researched the origins of the vehicle and were able to determine that the vehicle Luna-Hernandez had been driving was stolen from a car dealership in Clackamas County, Oregon.
Luna-Hernandez was arrested and booked into the Marin County Jail on felony and misdemeanor charges which included; commercial burglary, possession of a stolen vehicle, evading officers with wanton disregard for public safety, possession of drug paraphernalia, and driving on a suspended Oregon driver’s license.
Anyone with information about this crime is asked to call San Rafael Police at (415) 485-3000. Tips can also be made online at http://www.srpd.org/tips.
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Posted: November 06, 2019 5:48 PST by Sergeant J. Graham #