One Person Taken to Hospital After Sacramento Drive-By Shooting

FOX40: One Person Taken to Hospital After Sacramento Drive-By Shooting

SACRAMENTO — A drive-by shooting Sunday morning in Sacramento left one person with a non-life threatening gun shot wound to the arm, Sacramento police have confirmed.

Around 10:20 a.m. Sunday morning, two individuals were sitting outside of a home in a car along the 1400 block of Renee Avenue, when an SUV drove by and shot into the car. One of the individuals in the car was hit in the arm, according to police. The victim was then taken by a family member to a nearby hospital.

Authorities suspect the occupants of the car were targeted and say the incident may have been gang related.

At this time, police do not have a description of the SUV or a possible suspect.

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One Man Dead After Early Morning Shooting in South Modesto

FOX40: One Man Dead After Early Morning Shooting in South Modesto

MODESTO — A drive-by shooting in a South Modesto neighborhood left a man dead early Sunday morning, police confirmed.

Around 1:30 a.m., Modesto officers received multiple calls regarding a shooting along the 600 block of Thrasher Avenue. When emergency personnel arrived on scene, they found a man with a gunshot wound. The victim was then taken to a nearby hospital, where he later died.

According to a statement from Modesto police, the victim was in front of the residence with a group of individuals when a car drove by and shot multiple times.

Police have not identified any suspects or a motive in the incident. Modesto police encourage anyone with information to come forward.

Suspects in Custody After Assault, Robbery in Vacaville

FOX40: Suspects in Custody After Assault, Robbery in Vacaville

VACAVILLE — Four men were taken into custody early Friday morning in connection to what Vacaville police are calling a brutal assault and robbery, where a man was allegedly stripped of his personal belongings and severely beaten.

Just before midnight Thursday, Vacaville police received a call for service at a business across from an apartment complex along the 1500 block of Alamo Drive. While responding to that call, officers came across a panicked man at the nearby apartment complex who said he had just been assaulted and robbed.

The victim told police his cell phone, watch, money and pants had been stolen during the assault. He went on to provide officers with a description of the suspect’s vehicle.

Shortly thereafter, police were able to locate the suspects’ vehicle on Alamo Drive, at Davis Street. While trying to stop the vehicle, the suspects fled, police said. The pursuit continued onto eastbound Interstate 80 all the way to Winters.

The vehicle later came to a stop in a residential neighborhood in Winters — but it didn’t stop there.

Two of the four suspects then fled on foot. With the help of the Winters Police Department, the CHP and the Solano County Sheriff’s Office, police created a perimeter around the area, where the two individuals were later apprehended by officers.

According to Vacaville police, four men were eventually taken into custody in relation to the alleged assault and robbery.

Following the arrests, with the help of a Vacaville canine officer, officers recovered the victim’s phone.

Police also recovered a stolen firearm.

The suspects, Iseah Garza, 19, Siah Keola, 18 and Jacob Teneyck, 18, all of Vacaville, were arrested on a series of charges in connection to the incident, including robbery, conspiracy, evading an officer and firearm possession.

A juvenile was also taken into custody, but because of his age, police have not released his identity or the charges he’s facing.

The three adult suspects are being held in Solano County Jail, records show.

No hearing set for Fairfield man accused of assisting in mother’s suicide

No hearing set for Fairfield man accused of assisting in mother’s suicide

A former Vacaville resident alleged to have assisted in his mother’s suicide late last year appeared briefly Thursday in Solano County Superior Court, where the judge and attorneys agreed once again to delay the setting of a probable cause hearing.

Eric Capitanich, 43, now a resident of Fairfield, was arrested Jan. 6 by Vacaville police after police said the man played a role in aiding his mother’s suicide in the month prior.

Just after 7:30 p.m. Dec. 6, authorities were dispatched to a storage unit in Vacaville along the 200 block of Peabody Road, where they found a deceased 69-year-old woman. The victim had a single gunshot wound to the head, police said in a statement issued in early January. The woman was later identified as Diane Capitanich, a resident of Vacaville.

According to the statement, Vacaville police determined through their investigation that the woman’s son, Eric, played a role in his mother’s suicide.

One month after finding the woman, police arrested Eric Capitanich and he was subsequently booked into Solano County Jail.

At the suspect’s Jan. 10 arraignment, he pleaded not guilty to one count of aiding and abetting suicide. At the time of his arrest, he was booked into Solano County Jail, but following his arraignment, the judge allowed him to be released on his own recognizance.

He’s remained out of police custody since Jan. 10.

During Thursday’s court appearance, the man’s public defender asked to delay the setting of the probable cause hearing because of the significant amount of discovery evidence that needed to be reviewed.

The suspect is now slated to return to court April 20 for further proceedings.

For now, the man remains out of police custody.

Ex-VPAT employee offered plea deal, hearing delayed

Ex-VPAT employee offered plea deal, hearing delayed

A former Vacaville Performing Arts Theatre employee arrested last year on a child pornography charge may serve up to two years in state prison if he agrees to a plea deal, Thursday’s discussions in Solano County Superior Court revealed.

Donald Wade Jr., 37, was one of two men arrested in July on suspicion of possessing photos and videos of children changing clothes at the local theater. Wade, along with his co-worker, 35-year-old Thomas McPike, were booked into Solano County Jail after a police investigation into the disturbing allegations. During court discussions last year, it was revealed Wade was allegedly in possession of more than 600 images of youth and videos showing children changing at the Vacaville theater. Police believe the photos and videos were taken between 2012-2013.

Both men are facing child pornography possession charges and McPike is facing an additional invasion of privacy charge.

In February, McPike pleaded no contest to the charges he was facing and is now set to be formally sentenced April 3. As part of the plea deal, McPike is expected to serve the low term lid sentence of 16 months in state prison. The man also will be required to register as a sex offender.

If Wade agrees to plead no contest to the felony charge, he could serve the mid term lid sentence of two years, deputy district attorney Mary Nguyen detailed Thursday morning.

The prosecutor also said Wade could be sentenced to as little as probation, depending on the judge’s discretion.

Thursday McPike, despite not being scheduled on the court calendar, sat in the courtroom’s gallery while Wade’s case was heard by the judge.

Wade was originally arrested July 18 and immediately taken into police custody, according to court records. Wade went on to post bail the following day. At his arraignment in August, he was remanded once again and booked into Solano County Jail, where he remained for nearly two weeks before posting bail Aug. 23.

Accepting the plea deal would allow Wade to forego a jury trial. Pending a response to the district attorney’s offer, Wade is now set to return to court in April in preparation for a probable cause hearing set for May.

McPike is set to be formally sentenced April 3.

Prior to their arrests, the men were employed by Venue Tech, a company contracted by the City of Vacaville to manage the local theater.

According to police, an investigation into the allegations began in April 2016.

Wade will return to court April 26 for a readiness conference and again May 15 for a preliminary hearing.

Fairfield sex offender asking for unsupervised release

Fairfield sex offender asking for unsupervised release

The fate of a Fairfield sex offender petitioning the county for his unconditional release from state supervision is likely to be in the hands of a jury in the coming months, following a judge’s probable cause finding Monday morning in Solano County Superior Court.

Fraisure Earl Smith, 52, who’s been labeled a sexually violent predator, has been living as a transient since November 2015 and occupying various motels in Solano County since his release from a state hospital, despite rape and assault convictions dating back to the 1990s. The man was released from Coalinga State Hospital after the Department of State Hospitals approved his petition in 2015 asking for his release.

Since his release from the hospital, Smith has been supervised by Liberty Health Care, a company contracted by the state to manage sexually violent predators. According to representatives of the contracted agency, Smith is monitored in person by a case manager and a GPS tracking device while living at area motels.

In November, at the one-year mark since his release from the state hospital, Smith and his attorney, James McEntee, asked the court to consider granting him unsupervised release — the purpose of Monday’s hearing.

After hours of testimony Monday morning from representatives of Liberty Health Care who have worked with Smith since his release, Judge Arvid Johnson found there was cause for the case to continue to trial.

During the hearing, the court heard testimony from a clinical forensic psychologist who’s worked with Smith since 2013. The psychologist testified Smith is no longer a danger to the community nor a sexually violent predator — primarily because of various health issues, including cancer, the man has suffered in recent years.

“Mr. Smith, given all the stress in his life, is doing extremely well,” the psychologist testified. “He’s thankful to be alive [and] wants to spend time with his family.”

The court also heard from a community health worker who has worked with the man since September. The health worker testified how she found Smith to be inspiring because of what he’s overcome in life — cancer and incarceration.

On the other side of the spectrum, the court also heard testimony from a case manager with Liberty Health Care, Ben Hoffman, who voiced his opposition to the man’s release from supervision.

“I believe [his unsupervised release] would be a huge mistake,” Hoffman testified.

The witness cited the short time Smith has been out of the state hospital and said he believed it would be difficult for the man to be suddenly released into society with no support.

Monday’s court discussions confirmed Smith receives all his financial and housing support from Liberty Health Care.

According to another witness, Alan Stillman, an executive director at Liberty Healthcare, the average violent predator is supervised by the agency for an average of three to four years before released from supervision.

Stillman went on in his testimony to say, Liberty Healthcare has never recommended unconditional release after just one year of supervision.

“There’s been a lot of progress, but more time on the program is still needed,” Stillman testified.

Another witness who testified on behalf of the district attorney expressed on the stand her concerns about the potential unsupervised release of Smith.

Clinical Director at Liberty Health Care, Cecelia Groman, told the court that while Smith was at the Coalinga State Hospital, he chose not to complete sex offender treatment. When the man’s attorney asked the witness how Smith could be released from the hospital without having completed the treatment, she did not have an answer.

Groman went on to emphasize how she believes Smith is not ready for unsupervised release into the community because he has not completed enough treatment.

“[Smith] needs more treatment time,” Groman said. “He would pose a risk to the community if he was unconditionally discharged.”

In closing arguments, Smith’s attorney went on to emphasize how his client has changed immensely over the years.

“Mr. Smith has changed, clearly he’s changed from what he was when he was at the state hospital.” McEntee said.

The Deputy District Attorney, Mary Nguyen, however, expressed concern and said Smith is still a high risk to the community.

At the close of Monday’s court proceedings, the judge ordered the man to reappear in court June 23 at 8:30 a.m. when a trial date may be set.

Because of scheduling conflicts with Smith’s attorney, the trial will likely not begin until after August.

Smith remains out custody living in Solano County motels.

If granted unsupervised release, Smith intends to live with his family in Texas, his attorney said Monday in court.

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