Car thieves try to ram patrol cars

Police arrest two men who stole a car in Visalia and then led police on wild chase on back roads


VISALIA – Two men stole a car, tried to ram two patrol cars and then led several agencies on a chase through country roads between Visalia and Tipton before they were finally caught.

The chase began when two Visalia Police Department units spotted a stolen car in the area of Victor Avenue and County Center Street just before 6 a.m. on May 31. 

Officers followed the vehicle, which had been stolen from the 800 block of S. Linda Vista Street, into a neighborhood where the stolen vehicle was cornered on a cul-de-sac. The driver slowly turned around before attempted to ram the stolen car into the two VPD units. VPD officers chased the stolen vehicle through town before breaking off their pursuit in the area of Mooney Grove Park. 

The stolen car was later spotted by VPD in an orchard near Cartmill Avenue and Road 132 just east of the Tulare city limits. Officers attempted to catch up to the vehicle but ultimately lost sight of it in the area of Avenue 184 and Road 76 northwest of Tipton. 

The Tulare County Sheriff’s Department advised a short time later that they had located the vehicle in the area of Avenue 152 and Road 112 in Tipton and that the suspects had fled from the vehicle. Units from the Tulare Police Department, and California Highway Patrol responded to assist with the search. During the search 30-year-old Jesse Alaniz was taken into custody with the assistance of a Tulare Police K-9. Manuel Ramirez, 28, was arrested after he was found hiding in the area. The vehicle was determined to be a stolen vehicle from the south valley. 

Members of the Tulare County Reduce Auto Theft Task Force (TRATT) responded and assisted in the investigation. Both suspects were arrested for numerous charges related to the auto theft, pursuit, and assault with a deadly weapon. Alaniz was treated for minor injuries as a result of the K-9. Both suspects were booked into the Tulare County Adult Pre-trial Facility.

Visalia Police Log

Monday, May 28
At approximately 10 p.m. in the Mary’s Vineyard shopping center in the 1400 block of E. Noble, officers responded regarding a subject brandishing a knife at customers at the at the McDonald’s restaurant. Witnesses told officers that homeless man, later identified as 32-year-old Fabian Abila, was outside of the restaurant uttering threats, while making stabbing motions with a knife, towards a group of juveniles who were inside the restaurant. Officers located Abila nearby and took him into custody. He was booked at the Adult Pre-Trial Facility for brandishing a knife and making terrorist threats.

Sunday, June 3
At 9:59 a.m. in the area of Cameron and Court, an officer observed a 1998 Chevy Astro van that had been reported stolen. When the officer pulled over the vehicle, it was driven by 31-year-old Daniel Favela Romero. Romero was found to be on probation for a prior auto theft charge. He was booked at the Tulare County Pre-trial Facility for auto theft, possession of stolen property and violation of probation.

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