Reporting Deputy: Sergeant David Aldrich
File # Y230540027
On February 23, 2023, members of the Thermal Station Special Investigations Unit and the Fugitives & Warrants Enforcement Team were investigating a robbery in the 50200 block of South Balboa Street in the city of Coachella. While attempting to apprehend a robbery suspect in a vehicle, a 16-year-old and 17-year-old juvenile fled from the vehicle, one of which was armed with a semi-automatic handgun. After a short foot pursuit, the juveniles were taken into custody. The driver of the vehicle, Ezekiel Velez, a 21-year-old resident of Indio, was taken into custody for possessing 26 grams of cocaine.
Deputies conducted a yard-to-yard search, and an un-serialized firearm was located in the backyard of a residence in the 50200 block of South Balboa Street. The firearm was found loaded with a 30-round extended magazine. The firearm was positively identified as the firearm the 17-year-old juvenile was running with.
The 17-year-old juvenile of Coachella was booked at Juvenile Hall in the city of Indio for a minor in possession of a firearm. The 16-year-old juvenile resident of Coachella was released to his guardian.
Ezekiel Velez was booked at the John Benoit Detention Center in the city of Indio for possessing 26 grams of cocaine.
The Thermal Station Special Investigations Unit asks anyone with additional information to contact Deputy Piscatella at the Thermal Sheriff’s Station by calling (760)-863-8107. If you wish to remain anonymous, call Valley Crimestoppers at (760) 341-7867.
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