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The original item was published from 12/3/2022 3:00:00 PM to 12/3/2022 3:01:47 PM.

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Thermal Station

Posted on: December 3, 2022

[ARCHIVED] Traffic Stop Leads to Weapons Arrests

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Riverside County Sheriff's Department Press Release

Reporting Deputy: Sergeant Mariano Matos III

File # C223360038



On December 2, 2022, at 11:33 PM, members of the Coachella Community Action Team (CCAT) conducted a traffic enforcement stop at Airport Boulevard and Desert Cactus Road in the unincorporated community of Thermal. During the traffic enforcement stop, CCAT deputies noticed a short-barreled rifle in plain view on the backseat of the vehicle. The occupants were ordered out of the vehicle and taken into custody without incident. Arrested and booked at the John Benoit Detention Center were Victor Manuel Astorga Valdez, a 20-year-old resident of Indio, Andrew Barajas, an 18-year-old resident of Coachella, and Angel Adan Flores, an 18-year-old resident of Coachella, for possession of a California non-compliant firearm, possession of a loaded firearm, possession of a loaded firearm in a vehicle and not the registered owner, possession of a short-barreled rifle, and possession of a high-capacity magazine.

Anyone with any information regarding this incident is encouraged to contact Deputy Nevins or Deputy Piscatella of the Thermal Station at 760-863-8990 or Crime Stoppers at 760-341-STOP (7867).

For media inquiries regarding this incident please contact the Media Information Bureau.

Victor Manuel Astorga Valdez
Andrew Barajas
Angel Adan Flores

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