UPDATE: BEAUMONT: Four arrested, charged with kidnapping, murder of 21-year-old

BEAUMONT – Police officials announced the arrest of four people who were allegedly involved in the March 4 murder of 21-year-old Banning resident, Jasmine Zuniga. Officers arrested the four suspects Thursday, March 23, while serving homicide-related search warrants in the cities of Banning, Beaumont, Calimesa and Yucaipa.

SEE RELATED: 21-year-old woman fatally shot while sitting inside vehicle ID’d

According to Dianna Zuniga, her daughter, Jasmine Zuniga was a caring and loving mom to her two children, ages five and two. Zuniga family photo

Zuniga was fatally shot about 10:30 p.m., while sitting inside a vehicle in the 500 block of Michigan Avenue in Banning. Despite life-saving efforts, she died at an area hospital about one hour later.

About two weeks after Zuniga’s death – just days before the warrants were served and the arrests made – Dianna Zuniga spoke about her daughter and the sense of loss and grief their family was feeling.

“We’re still in shock over the news,” Dianna explained at the time.

She was so loving and caring,” Dianna said about her daughter, who herself was a mother of two young children; including a 5-year-old daughter and a 2-year-old son. “Jasmine didn’t deserve this.”

Just four days later, Beaumont police officials served the multiple warrants related to their ongoing investigation into Zuniga’s fatal shooting.

In addition to the four arrested in connection with the homicide investigation, officials arrested four additional people during the service of the early-morning search warrants. The four were arrested for various charges not related to the murder investigation.

Beginning about 4 a.m., the Beaumont Police Department served a series of search warrants as follow up into the ongoing investigation into Zuniga’s murder.

Samuel Jesus Acosta, 32, of Banning, and Mathew Ray Zues Munoz, 25, of Beaumont were both arrested for murder, attempted murder, kidnapping and various weapons and gang enhancements.

Erika Cristell Garcia, 25, of Banning, was arrested for attempted murder and gang and weapons enhancements.

Francisca Perla Acosta, 34, of Banning was arrested for accessory to murder and a gang enhancement.

The other arrests included Abel Eddie Martinez, 68, of Beaumont for a weapons violation, two other suspects for other unrelated warrants and one subject who was arrested, but later released pending further investigation.

All those who were arrested were booked at the Smith Correctional Facility in Banning. Acosta and Munoz were booked without bail.

Zuniga family photo

While speaking about the arrests Saturday night, three nights after those who were allegedly responsible for her daughter’s death had been apprehended, Dianna said she was happy and relieved at the progress Beaumont police officials had made in their investigation; however she still wants more answers.

“Right now, it only brings up more questions,” Dianna explained.

Anyone with information regarding this case is encouraged to call Detective Sergeant Galletta at (951) 769-8500. Residents can also provide information anonymously at crimetips@beaumontpd.org.

 

Contact the writer: trevor.rcns@gmail.com

trevor main

Trevor Montgomery runs Riverside County News Source and Shasta County News Source. He also writes for several Riverside County based newspapers, including Valley News and Anza Valley Outlook and he also writes for Bonsall/Fallbrook Village News in San Diego County.

Trevor spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg in an off-duty accident.

During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations, including the Robert Presley Detention Center, the Southwest Station in Temecula, the Hemet Station, and the Lake Elsinore Station, along with many other locations.

Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team, Personnel and Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.

Trevor has been married for more than 26 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and has 13 children and 12 – soon to be 13 – grandchildren.

CHERRY VALLEY: Two confirmed dead following standoff with barricaded subject

CHERRY VALLEY – Details are still emerging, but sheriff’s officials have confirmed two people are dead after a subject barricaded themselves inside a mobile home at the Royal Coach mobile home park in Cherry Valley. The mobile home park is in the 39000 block of Cherry Valley Boulevard, between Nancy and Beaumont Avenues.

Officials are investigating an incident that left two people dead. John Strangis photo

Although the incident was initially reported by Beaumont police officials as an active shooter situation, both Beaumont PD and Riverside County Sheriff’s officials later clarified the incident had been related to a barricaded suspect and had not been considered an active shooter incident.

The deadly standoff began Saturday morning, March 25, as a reported “Shooting/Possible Homicide” Riverside County Sheriff’s Media Information Bureau released in a social media tweet. “Suspect believed to be barricaded in home,” the tweet explained.

Other media outlets have reported that deputies responded to the area where they found a victim dead in front of a mobile home.

Deputies immediately established a perimeter around the mobile home where the body was found and requested assistance from the Sheriff’s Emergency Response Team (SWAT) as well as Beaumont PD.

The incident led to a several-hours long standoff.

During the long standoff, dozens of sheriff and police vehicles lined the streets, while deputies and officers maintained a perimeter around the area. For their protection, residents were kept from entering or leaving where the incident was occurring.

Riverside Sheriff’s and Beaumont PD’s SWAT armored tactical rescue vehicles responded to the standoff. Miguel Shannon/Epicenter News photo

Two armored tactical rescue vehicles – one Riverside Sheriff’s and the other Beaumont PD’s – responded to the scene during the standoff, as did a sheriff’s mobile command center. The command center was set up at an undisclosed location nearby.

A sheriff’s aviation unit helicopter circled the area throughout the incident.

It was not immediately known if nearby residents were evacuated from their homes; however officials were not allowing residents to return to their homes for several hours.

At one point a sheriff’s armored battering ram was brought to the residence, however it was not immediately known how or if the ram had been used.

Officials have not yet specified how the incident came to a conclusion; however, in the hours after the emergency ended sheriff’s investigators, forensic technicians from the department’s Forensic Services Bureau and other officials were seen coming and going from the mobile home where the standoff occurred.

The sheriff’s Media Information Bureau has indicated a press release with additional information would be provided at a later time.

The area of Cherry Valley Boulevard and Beaumont Avenue were cordoned off with crime scene tape and closed to through traffic for several hours while officials investigated the incident. The mobile home park was expected to remain closed until officials concluded their investigation.

Beaumont police officials updated that the roadway had been reopened about 3:30 p.m.

Anyone with information regarding this incident is encouraged to contact Riverside sheriff’s officials at (951) 922-7100. Callers can remain anonymous. Citizens may also submit a tip using the Sheriff’s CrimeTips online form.

Click any image to open full-size gallery.

John Strangis video

 

Contact the writer: trevor.rcns@gmail.com

trevor main

Trevor Montgomery spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg in an off-duty accident.

During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations, including the Robert Presley Detention Center, the Southwest Station in Temecula, the Hemet Station, and the Lake Elsinore Station, along with many other locations.

Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team, Personnel and Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.

Trevor has been married for more than 26 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and has 13 children and 12 – soon to be 13 – grandchildren.

MORENO VALLEY: Driver killed after vehicle smashes into power pole, trees

MORENO VALLEY – A driver died when their car smashed into a telephone pole and several trees Saturday, March 25. The early-morning, single-vehicle wreck happened in the 17700 block of Lasselle Street between Avenida Classica and Via De Anza, near Rancho Verde High School, in Moreno Valley.

Vehicle parts, debris and sections of the telephone pole were strewn about the roadway after the wreck. William Hayes photo

Moreno Valley Police and Fire personnel and other emergency first responders were dispatched to the scene of the fatal crash about 2:30 a.m., after Riverside County emergency dispatchers were notified about the wreck.

Callers told dispatchers a car had struck a telephone pole and that the impact sheared the telephone pole in half – leaving live lines dangling over nearby trees, the vehicle and in the street. A concrete light pole was also damaged in the collision.

When they arrived, officials found vehicle parts, debris and sections of the telephone pole strewn about the roadway after the wreck.

Authorities located the mangled wreckage of a car that had smashed into the pole and trees. The car, which was completely unrecognizable after the wreck, was found upside down amidst broken tree branches and the sheared power pole.

Emergency medical personnel were initially unable to gain access to the mortally injured driver or the vehicle due to live power lines that were left draped over the vehicle.

Sheriff’s and coroner’s officials survey the scene of the fatal crash. William Hayes photo

Southern California Edison workers were summoned to the scene to de-energize the live wires and assess the damage to the pole, according to Cal Fire/Riverside County Fire Public Information Officer Jody Hagemann. Crews were later forced to remove and replace the pole.

The driver and sole-occupant of the car “suffered multiple traumatic injuries,” Riverside Sheriff’s Sergeant William Stens explained in a written press release after the incident.

The victim succumbed to their injuries and was pronounced dead at the scene.

The victim has not been identified, pending notification of their family.

The Moreno Valley Police Traffic Reconstruction Team responded to the scene of the deadly crash and assumed the investigation.

Their preliminary investigation determined the car was traveling southbound on Lasselle Street when – for an unknown reason – the driver lost control, left the roadway and smashed into the pole and trees.

Members of the Moreno Valley PD Traffic Reconstruction Team document the scene of the crash. William Hayes photo

Traffic Team members were working to determine the speed of the car at the time of the crash. Alcohol and/or drug intoxication have not been ruled out, pending toxicology reports.

Southbound Lasselle Street was closed for several hours between Avenida Classica and Via De Anza while sheriff’s officials conducted their investigation into the fatal crash.

The road closure was expected to remain in effect until repairs could be made to the destroyed power pole.

Moreno Valley police officials are investigating the cause of the deadly wreck. Their investigation is active and ongoing.

Anyone with information about the incident or who witnessed the fatal collision are encouraged to contact officials at Moreno Valley PD at (951) 486-6700. Callers can refer to incident file number MV170840033 and can remain anonymous. Citizens may also submit a tip using the Sheriff’s CrimeTips online form.

Click any image to open full-size gallery.

 

Contact the writer: trevor.rcns@gmail.com

trevor main

Trevor Montgomery spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg in an off-duty accident.

During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations, including the Robert Presley Detention Center, the Southwest Station in Temecula, the Hemet Station, and the Lake Elsinore Station, along with many other locations.

Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team, Personnel and Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.

Trevor has been married for more than 26 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and has 13 children and 12 – soon to be 13 – grandchildren.

MORENO VALLEY: 51-year-old inmate dies in custody at RUHS

MORENO VALLEY – A 51-year-old man died while in sheriff’s custody Friday, March 23. The inmate was being housed in the secured detention unit at the Riverside University Health System at 26520 Cactus Avenue in Moreno Valley.

The man, who officials have not identified pending notification of his family, experienced a medical emergency while being housed at the hospital about 3 a.m., according to Riverside Sheriff’s Sergeant Wallace Clear.

“Medical staff at the hospital immediately started life saving efforts,” Clear explained in a written press release the day of the man’s death. “Despite their efforts, the male was pronounced deceased.”

The Riverside Sheriff’s Special Investigations Bureau is investigating the man’s death.

Officials did not specify if the man had any pre-existing medical conditions that might have led to his death or why the man was being held in the sheriff’s secured detention unit at the hospital. Officials also did not say why the man was incarcerated.

“At this time, no foul play is suspected,” Clear said.

Anyone who may have information regarding this incident is encouraged to contact Investigator Harvey with the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department at (951) 955-2777. Callers can refer to incident file number RC17083002 and can remain anonymous. Citizens may also submit a tip using the Sheriff’s CrimeTips online form.

 

Contact the writer: trevor.rcns@gmail.com

trevor main

Trevor Montgomery spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg in an off-duty accident.

During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations, including the Robert Presley Detention Center, the Southwest Station in Temecula, the Hemet Station, and the Lake Elsinore Station, along with many other locations.

Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team, Personnel and Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.

Trevor has been married for more than 26 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and has 13 children and 12 – soon to be 13 – grandchildren.

HEMET: Helmet cam footage shows eventful, dangerous year for local firefighters

HEMET – During 2016, City of Hemet firefighters responded to nearly 17,000 calls for service. Many of those calls involved vehicle fires, residential blazes, wildland fires, fatal traffic collisions and other deadly incidents.

In order to show many of the dangerous calls the firefighters responded to and handled, Hemet Fire Fighters Association, Local 2342 compiled helmet camera footage from throughout the year and created a compilation video they shared with the community. (See video and screen shots below.)

The nearly five-minute long video depicts a wide variety of the emergency calls our local fire heroes responded to throughout the year.

Great Job City of Hemet firefighters! Keep up the great work!

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Hemet Fire Fighters Association, Local 2342 video

Click any image to open full size gallery.

 

Contact the writer: trevor.rcns@gmail.com

trevor main

Trevor Montgomery spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg in an off-duty accident.

During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations, including the Robert Presley Detention Center, the Southwest Station in Temecula, the Hemet Station, and the Lake Elsinore Station, along with many other locations.

Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team, Personnel and Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.

Trevor has been married for more than 26 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and has 13 children and 12 – soon to be 13 – grandchildren.