Numerous Weapons Stolen From Elderly Wildomar War Veteran Recovered
Written by Trevor Montgomery
Wildomar, Calif.; numerous arrests have been made after a lengthy investigation by the Murrieta-Temecula Regional Gang Task Force (MTRGTF) into suspected elder abuse that occurred in the city of Wildomar.
Within the past four weeks, the MTRGTF received information of a possible elder abuse and residential burglary case. The case involved a temporary care taker, identified as Shannon Rather. Rather was alleged to have been responsible for stealing rifles and other valuables from an elderly victims’ residence.
The victim is described as being in his late 80’s and resides in the City of Wildomar. The victim was highly decorated and served his country proudly in the United States Marine Corps during numerous wars and campaigns, including World War II, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War.
During the course of their investigation, the MTRGTF developed information that the stolen rifles had been sold and/or traded for cash and narcotics to alleged documented gang members in the Riverside and San Bernardino County areas. These suspects were ultimately identified and tracked down by the MTRGTF. All three of those suspects were located and arrested for their involvement in this case.
On October 29, after an exhaustive and thorough investigation, a search warrant was served by members of the Riverside County Regional Gang Task Force in the 5500 block of 42nd St., in the City of Jurupa Valley. During the service of that search warrant, all but one of the victim’s weapons was recovered. Additionally, a large quantity of narcotics, miscellaneous identity theft items, and a bullet proof vest were all recovered at the residence.
If you have information related to this investigation, you can contact Detective Huss from the Murrieta-Temecula Regional Gang Task Force at 951-461-6353 or at DHuss@murrieta.org. You may also provide information anonymously through “We Tip” at 1-800-78-CRIME.
Arrestee #1: Shannon Rather (45-year-old resident of Lake Elsinore) Charges: elder abuse, burglary, possession of methamphetamine, felon in possession of a firearm, violation of probation and criminal conspiracy.
Arrestee #2: Joseph Peterson (36-year-old resident of Menifee) Charges: burglary, possession of stolen property, violation of parole, possession of methamphetamine and criminal conspiracy.
Arrestee #3: Frank Cooper (39-year-old resident of Rialto) Charges: burglary, possession of methamphetamine, violation of parole, criminal conspiracy.
Arrestee #4: Mario Martinez (33-year-old resident of Jurupa Valley) Charges: burglaary, possession of methamphetamine, transportation of methamphetamine for sales, possession of stolen, felon in possession of a firearm and criminal conspiracy.
A press release from the Murrieta Police Department stated, “It should be noted, Ms. Rather is a Post Community Supervised Release (PRCS) probationer for the crime of commercial burglary and Mr. Cooper is a Post Community Supervised Release (PRCS) probation for narcotic related offenses. Hence, both are products of AB109 – Ca State Realignment, signed into law in 2011. AB109 allows thousands of less serious felony offenders to remain out of custody on supervision (probation), while they would have previously been eligible for state prison.”
The Murrieta-Temecula Regional Gang Task Force is one of several gang related task forces throughout Riverside County. This task force was created for the purpose of promoting safe and secure neighborhoods, free of violent crime and gang related violence.
The three main “Goals and Objectives” of the Riverside County Regional Gang Task Force are:
1. To prevent and deter violent crime and gang activity through education and the promotion of positive commitments, beliefs, and activities;
2. To intervene and hold accountable, youths exhibiting delinquent behaviors leading to the formation of gang and gang membership
3. To suppress and deter gang activity and violent crime through enforcement and suppression, intensive supervision, vertical prosecution, and the collection and dissemination of criminal intelligence.
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