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.
While conducting a DUI and DL checkpoint on June 30, 2023, the Ventura Police Department had one DUI related arrest. The checkpoint was held on Harbor Blvd. south of Schooner Dr. from 2100 hours and concluded at 0100 hours. The following is a list of the enforcement activities that took place at, or as a result of the checkpoint:
- 707 cars passed through the checkpoint
- 472 drivers were contacted and screened through the checkpoint
- 13 FST’s were conducted
- 8 drivers cited for VC12500(a), Unlicensed Driver
- 1 driver cited for VC14601.1(a), Driving on a suspended license
- 1 driver cited for VC22350, Speeding
Checkpoint locations are based on a history of crashes and DUI arrests. The primary purpose of checkpoints is not to make arrests, but to promote public safety by deterring drivers from driving impaired. Funding for this checkpoint was provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Interrupted Vehicle Theft
On June 29, at approximately 6:30 pm, the Ventura Police Command Center received a 911 call from a female reporting that her husband was in a physical fight with a man that was inside their vehicle near the intersection of Eagle St. and Partridge Drive. When the suspect, 32-year-old Oxnard resident Richard Gonzalez, was confronted by the victim’s husband, Gonzalez physically assaulted the victim’s husband and started to run away. The victim’s husband chased Gonzalez, and the Gonzalez brandished a firearm, took the husband’s cell phone, and fled to a neighboring apartment complex.
Officers in the area quickly set up a perimeter and a K9 Officer started a track of Gonzalez. Officers deployed a drone and in conjunction with the K9 track, and Gonzalez was located by the drone in the backyard of an apartment, actively trying to open the rear sliding door and window.
Officers were able to take Gonzalez into custody and recovered the stolen cell phone. The ensuing investigation revealed the Gonzalez was attempting to steal the victim’s car when confronted by the owner and Gonzalez was stopped by officers as he actively tried to enter an occupied apartment. The firearm used by Gonzalez was located and found to be a toy cap gun.
Gonzalez was booked at the Ventura County Jail for Attempted Vehicle Theft, Robbery, Brandishing an Imitation Firearm, Battery, Prowling, and Possession of a Controlled Substance.
Commercial Burglary Arrest
On July 2, at approximately 2:30 am, the Ventura Police Department Communications Center received a 911 call from an alert security guard that a male subject, later identified as 24-year-old Oxnard resident Skyler Blanchette, was breaking into a business on California St by smashing a window and kicking the front door. Officers arrived on scene within a minute and located and detained Blanchette.
Blanchette was arrested and booked at the Ventura County Jail for Commercial Burglary. A search of the Superior Court of California website shows Blanchette has been convicted of Exhibiting a Deadly Weapon, Shoplifting, Battery, Petty Theft, and First Degree Residential Burglary.