Law Enforcement Seizes Illegal Marijuana Plants and Arrests Motor Vehicle Theft Suspect
On Friday, September 21, 2018, at approximately 1:20 PM, members of the El Paso County Sheriff’s Rural Enforcement and Outreach Unit (REO) and Metro Vice, Narcotics and Intelligence (VNI) executed a search warrant for illegal cultivation of marijuana at an address in the 5200 block of S. Yoder Road. During the search of the property, 116 plants were located with 104 being seized. The investigation is ongoing with criminal charges pending.
After the execution of the search warrant, investigators observed what appeared to be several vehicles in various stages of disrepair at a property directly to the south in the 5300 Block of S. Yoder Road. They were informed that the property was a stolen vehicle “chop shop” based on the frequency in which vehicles were being brought in.
An investigator was able to view two license plates, through a dilapidated wooden privacy fence, which came back as stolen vehicles when queried. A third was queried by vehicle identification number. The stolen vehicles were identified as a gold 2005 Ford truck, 1999 maroon Chevy truck, white 2002 Ford truck, and an enclosed trailer.
While assessing the situation, investigators thought it was likely that the property may be occupied. Multiple verbal commands were given over public address asking for occupants to exit with negative results. Based on this information, the EPSO Detectives were contacted and a warrant was obtained for the property to include the residence. After a series of additional verbal commands were met with negative results the front door to the residence was opened and two occupants were detained and questioned.
While executing the search warrant, a Taurus .22 and .410 combination rifle were located. A criminal history check of both occupants revealed that one had a felony conviction for fraud. When asked about the weapon, the occupant with the felony conviction stated that he had purchased it a “while back”. He also stated that he is a mechanic and that individuals bring vehicles to his property for him to work on. It was apparent to investigators that the vehicles were not in a state of repair but in a state of disassembly.
Gonzalo Adrian Gonzalez-Gomez, DOB: 10/22/80, was arrested and booked in the Criminal Justice Center Jail for Felony Possession of a Weapon by Previous Offender and three counts of Felony First Degree Aggravated Motor Vehicle Theft. Mr. Gonzalez-Gomez mugshot is attached to this media release.