Sheriff News for 12/27/12 Edition

December 27, 2012 

Two behind bars, deputies seize UZI rifle

Two Oakhurst men are behind bars following a short pursuit over Deadwood Tuesday, Dec. 18. A canine tracked down one suspect and a sheriff's deputy recovered a UZI rifle.

Around 9:30 p.m., Deputy Richard Gonzales attempted to conduct an enforcement stop near Thornberry Road (420) and Highway 41. Instead of yielding, the driver, Adrian Joseph Reyes, 28, took off heading north when he suddenly pulled over at a turnout. His passenger, Joshua Russell Murray, 18, jumped out of the car carrying a backpack and fled down the hill.

Sgt. Tyson Pogue and Deputy Steve Robinson detained Reyes while Gonzales took off running to find Murray. Gonzales found the backpack. Inside it he found an unloaded semi-automatic 9mm UZI firearm, numerous rounds of ammunition, and a homemade silencer.

A K9 team was called to assist in the search for Murray. A Mariposa County Sheriff's K9 deputy deployed his partner "K9 Arthur," who found the suspect hiding under brush between boulders at the bottom of a steep ravine. Based on where Murray was captured, deputies say they would not have been able to find him had it not been for K9 Arthur's keen nose and tracking ability.

Murray now faces weapons charges and carrying a firearm with a prior felony. He is being held without bail.

Reyes, who was driving on a suspended license, was booked for driving without a license and evading police. His bail was set at $5,000.

Beware of door-to-door salesman

Madera County Sheriff John Anderson is warning citizens to beware of a man posing as a sales representative making house-calls in Madera County.

The suspect identifies himself to his victims as Dennis Small and claims to represent Air Care Medical out of Clovis.

Small's latest victim is a 68-year-old Oakhurst man who bought a vacuum from the Clovis company.

After making that purchase, "Dennis Small" made a house-call, telling the victim that he was authorized to sell products and service for that product. Believing Small's sales pitch, the victim forked over nearly $800 for a warranty contract that included lifetime filters and service.

That was in May. By October, the victim needed his vacuum serviced and made arrangements to replace the filters as per the warranty. Small promised to respond within two weeks.

Two months later, and still no service, the victim called the sheriff.

Anderson says that, based on information gathered, deputies suspect the door-to-door salesman may not be acting alone. The Madera County Sheriff's Office has been advised there are other victims.

Anyone who may have information is asked to call either the Madera County Sheriff's Office at (559) 675-7770 or CRIME STOPPPERS at (559) 498-STOP (7867).

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