VPD officers arrest Adrian Castanon at safe house for Norteno gang

@TheSunGazette

VISALIA – The investigation into a gang member led officers to a safe house in Lindsay for the Norteno street gang last week.

At 7 a.m. on Jan. 12, officers with local gang units served a search warrant in the 21000 block of Ballon Avenue in Lindsay. During a search of the home, officers located 35-year-old Adrian Castanon, who was in possession of a stolen assault rifle, methamphetamine, and ammunition. Castanon is a convicted felon and a known gang member making it illegal for him to possess firearms or ammunition. Castanon was arrested and booked into the Tulare County Jail on charges of felon in possession of a firearm, possession of a stolen firearm, felon in possession of ammunition, possession of methamphetamine, and possession of methamphetamine with a firearm.

Castanon’s arrest capped a six-month investigation by the Tulare Area Regional Gang Enforcement Team (TARGET) and Visalia Police Department Special Enforcement Bureau (SEB). The case began when VPD and TARGET officers learned that the residence on Ballon was possibly a safe house for northern gang members in possession of firearms.

 

Visalia Police Log

Wednesday, Jan. 10
At 8:30 a.m. in the 800 block of N. Burke Street, officers received a call from a victim reporting three male subjects in a white van fired several rounds at him from what he believed was a BB gun. The victim followed the vehicle to the area of Garden Street and Main Street when a man exited the vehicle from the passenger side and brandished a semi automatic hand gun at him. The vehicle then fled from the area. The victim provided the officers with photos of the vehicle and the license plate number. Officers located the vehicle on southbound Demaree at Tulare at approximately 9:10 a.m. and a traffic stop was conducted. The three subjects in the vehicle were positively identified by the victim. The two juveniles, ages 13 and 15, were booked at the Juvenile Justice Center and the Carlos Villarreal, 19, was booked at Bob Wiley Detention Facility. All three were booked on charges of assault with a deadly weapon and brandishing.

At 9 a.m. in the 1700 block of N. Locust St., officers with the Narcotics Unit and Special Enforcement Unit served a search warrant. Officers located heroin, scales, packaging materials and US currency. Roberto Chavez, 69, was booked into the Tulare County Pretrial Facility for possession of heroin for sale and committing a felony while out on bail.

Thursday, Jan. 11
At 2 p.m. in the 800 block of N. West St., officers with the Narcotics Unit and Special Enforcement Unit served a search warrant. Officers located methamphetamine and firearms. Johnny Ortega, 37, was arrested for being a felon in possession of a firearm. Raymond Ortega, 39, was arrested for possession of methamphetamine, possession of a controlled substance while armed, being a felon in possession of a firearm, and being a felon in possession of ammunition.

Friday, Jan. 12
At 1:30 p.m. in the 300 block of NW Second Ave., officers with the Narcotics Unit, Special Enforcement Unit, Property Crimes Unit and TARGET task force served two search warrants in Visalia. Officers located 1.5 pounds of heroin, 1/8 of an ounce of methamphetamine, two firearms, ammunition, $2,000 in cash, scales and packaging materials. Reyna Alvarado, 26, was arrested and booked into the Tulare County Pretrial Facility for possession of heroin for sale, possession of methamphetamine for sale, and armed while in possession of a controlled substance for sale.

Saturday, Jan. 13
At 11:12 p.m. in the area of Turner and Center, officers were dispatched to a physical disturbance. Upon arrival, officers learned that 29-year-old David Herrera had used a 3-foot sword to strike the victim. The victim was able to block the strike with their hand leaving a large gash. Herrera also kicked a second victim in the face causing a visible injury. Both victims were treated by ambulance for non-life threatening wounds. Herrera was arrested and later booked into the Tulare County Pre Trial facility for two counts of assault with a deadly weapon.

At 6:27 p.m. in the 300 block of W. Laurel, officers responded to a report of a stabbing. The victim suffered from a stab wound to his left abdomen and his left arm. He was taken to Kaweah Delta for his injuries. The investigation led to the arrest of Stephen Guillen, 22, of Visalia. Guillen was booked for attempted murder, parole hold, and gang enhancement.

Sunday, Jan. 14
At 7:53 a.m. at the AM/PM at 2910 N. Dinuba Blvd., officers responded to a report of a robbery. Witnesses told the officers that a man, later identified as 32-year-old Jon Martinez, entered the store, took items on display and walked out without paying for them. An employee confronted Martinez who then attempted to strike the employee with a wooden dowel. The suspect then fled the area with the stolen property. Officers conducted an extensive search and located the suspect, with the stolen property, in the Orchard Walk Shopping Center. The suspect also had an ASP expandable baton in his possession. The suspect was arrested for the robbery and a weapon possession charge and booked into the Tulare County Jail.

Start typing and press Enter to search