by Cindy Summers
Police reports are provided to us by the Ventura Police Department and are not the opinions of the Ventura Breeze. All suspects mentioned are assumed to be innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
Attempt Grand Theft, Felony Vandalism, Vehicle Tampering, Possession of Stolen Property, and Conspiracy Arrests.
On July 28 at 3:30 am, the Ventura Police Department Command Center received a call about two suspects tampering with a car in the 1000 block of Santa Clara St. The suspects fled in a vehicle before finishing stealing the catalytic converter, leaving the victim’s car damaged. Ventura Police Patrol officers located the suspect vehicle and pulled it over. Inside officers contacted the three suspects, 32 year old Los Angeles resident Sergio Casteneda, 35 year old Los Angeles resident Erik Gomez-Diaz and 41 year old Los Angeles resident Luis Ramirez-Nunez, who had four stolen catalytic converters with them.
Ventura Police Street Crimes (SCU) detectives responded to assist in the investigation. Detectives were able to identify two additional victims in Ventura. One catalytic converter was stolen from Howard St and one from Evergreen Dr. The three suspects had tools, a cordless saw, and a car jack with them. There has been a dramatic increase in Ventura County in this type of theft over the last six months. Though this type of crime is hard to protect against, there are mechanics that can modify your vehicle with aftermarket products that make it more difficult for criminals to steal car parts.
All three suspects are from the Los Angeles area. They were arrested and transported to the Ventura County Jail, where they were booked for attempted grand theft, felony vandalism, vehicle tampering, possession of stolen property, and conspiracy.
This is an ongoing investigation. If anyone has information or was the victim of catalytic converter theft from July 27 – July 28, please contact the Ventura Police Department Street Crimes Unit.
Drug Sales Arrest
During several months of investigation, detectives from the Ventura Police Department Street Crimes Unit identified William Clay as a subject selling illegal drugs in Ventura. On July 28, at 3:00 pm, detectives located and detained Clay and served a search warrant at his residence. During the search warrant, SCU detectives found a large quantity of methamphetamine and a large amount of currency inside Clay’s home.
As a result of the investigation, 63 year old Ventura resident William Clay was arrested for possession of a controlled substance for sales. Clay was transported and booked at the Ventura County Jail.
A search of the Ventura County Superior Court shows that William Clay has prior convictions for possession of a controlled substance, under the influence of a controlled substance, and possession of drug paraphernalia.
On July 31, at approximately 10:00 am, a resident in the 2700 block of Channel Drive observed an unknown subject (later identified as 38 year old vagrant Daniel Freitas) in her backyard. As the resident was watching Freitas, he walked up on to the rear patio. The resident called 911 and Freitas exited the side yard and began running westbound on Channel Dr.
Patrol officers were on-scene quickly and detained Freitas. Freitas was positively identified by witnesses and arrested for prowling and an outstanding felony warrant. No one was injured as a result of this incident.
A review of the Ventura County Superior Court website revealed Freitas has been arrested numerous times since 2016. His most recent charges include possession of narcotics, burglary, and under the influence of a controlled substance. Additionally, Freitas is currently on PROS (Post Release Offender Supervision).
Stabbing with Arrest
On August 3, at approximately 9:45 am, a concerned resident living in the 200 block of Salinas Walk, called 911 due to hearing a female subject yelling for help. Patrol officers arrived on-scene quickly and determined the victim was near a vagrant encampment in the barranca area west of Wells Rd, north of Citrus Dr.
The investigation revealed the victim and suspect (32 year old vagrant Kristy Hernandez) knew each other and got into an argument. Hernandez stabbed the victim one time in her right arm with an unknown sharp object. After the stabbing, Hernandez immediately fled the scene on foot. A detective driving an unmarked police vehicle saw Hernandez on Wells Rd., and assisted patrol officers with taking her into custody. Hernandez was arrested for felony assault with a deadly weapon. The victim was transported to a local hospital for non-life-threatening injuries.
A review of the Ventura County Superior Court website revealed Hernandez has prior convictions for vehicle theft, under the influence of a controlled substance, vandalism, petty theft and resisting arrest.
Willfully Discharge of a Firearm, Resisting Arrest, Vandalism, and Arson Arrest
On July 30, at approximately 3:45 am, officers responded to a call of possible gunshots in the area of Sherwin Ave and Ventura Blvd. While officers were responding to the scene, a resident on Sherwin Ave called Ventura Police Command Center to report a subject who appeared to be armed with a sword running through the business complex on Sherwin. Officers arrived and detained 39 year old Ventura resident Brenton Edward Cherrie, who matched the description of the suspect. The officers located an empty handgun magazine on Cherrie as well as an empty shell casing. Cherrie began to physically resist officers and was taken into custody.
Based on the investigation, Cherrie was arrested for felony discharging a firearm and resisting arrest and was transported and booked at the Ventura County Jail. No one was injured as a result of the arrest or the shooting.
Based on the incident, Ventura Police Special Enforcement Team (SET), along with the Street Crimes Unit (SCU), served a search warrant at Cherrie’s business in the 2800 block of Sherwin Ave. During the service of the warrant, detectives located and seized multiple firearms and ammunition. Cherrie was served with paperwork revoking his right to own and possess firearms.
On August 3, at approximately 8:30 pm, Cherrie was released from VCJ. On 8/3/20, at approximately 2340 hours, Ventura Police Department Command Center received a 911 call about a subject lighting a fire in the 2800 block of Sherwin Ave. When officers arrived, they located a medium-sized fire near the business and detained Cherrie. During the investigation, it was determined Cherrie had lit the fire near the business, which had endangered the building and people inside it. Cherrie had also damaged the business’ doors and broke a vehicle’s window parked in the area. No one was injured as a result of the arson or vandalism.
Cherrie was arrested for arson and vandalism and booked at the Ventura County Jail.