On January 13, 2013 at about 3:15PM, witnesses reported seeing a subject in a red Suzuki Areio fire two rounds from a shotgun while the car drove through the parking lot of Northridge Mall. No injuries were reported. Officers from the Salinas Police Department responded and located the vehicle as it exited the mall parking lot onto N. Main St. A traffic stop was initiated but the driver fled leading officers on a high-speed pursuit, which reached speeds of over 80 miles an hour on Boronda Rd. Due to the high amount of traffic and the suspect’s dangerous driving maneuvers, it was determined that the risk to the public was too great and the pursuit was terminated. The suspects were able to evade capture.
Within two hours of the incident, officers had positively identified 32-year old Carlos Quezada as the alleged shooter. Quezada lives in the city of Hollister so officers with the Salinas Police Department’s Violence Suppression Unit (VSU) coordinated with a multi-jurisdictional task force in San Benito County in an effort to locate and apprehend Quezada.
On January 15, 2013, VSU officers developed information on a possible location where Quezada was living and established an undercover surveillance with the assistance of the San Benito/South Santa Clara County based task force. Quezada was eventually seen exiting the home on Rancho Dr. in Hollister and Quezada was taken into custody without incident. He was brought back to Salinas and booked into the Monterey County Jail on numerous felony firearms and gang-related charges.
VSU officers have also identified the alleged driver of the getaway vehicle as 25-year old Michael Rivas. He is described as a Hispanic male, 5’-6” and 160 lbs. Rivas’ whereabouts are unknown and he is considered armed and dangerous. A nationwide crime alert has been sent to all law enforcement agencies.
Salinas Police are asking the public for help in capturing this suspect and for information leading to the recovery of the suspect vehicle and weapon used. The vehicle description is a red, 2003 Suzuki Areio bearing CA license 5UKB755. It is a compact, 4-door hatchback.
Anyone with information is urged to call Salinas Police at 831-758-7321, the Salinas PD Watch Commander at 831-758-7250 or the anonymous Crime Tip Line, 831-775-4222.