SAN JOAQUIN COUNTY — A Sunday morning collision on Highway 12 near the Mokelumne River Bridge left one passenger dead, another in the hospital and the driver in jail for driving under the influence.
According to a post on the California Highway Patrol Stockton Office’s Facebook page, officers responded at approximately 4 a.m. Sunday to the scene of a fatal traffic collision on Highway 12 east of the Mokelumne River Bridge.
During the investigation, officers determined that a 2012 Chevrolet — driven by 19-year-old Ainise Taimani of Antioch — was traveling west on Highway 12 at an unknown speed.
As the vehicle approached the bridge, the driver reportedly allowed the vehicle to leave the roadway and travel along the north shoulder, where it then struck a lamp post.
The force of the collision ejected both unrestrained passengers from the rear of the vehicle. One passenger suffered fatal injuries, and the other passenger was taken to the hospital with major injuries.
Taimani was determined to be under the influence of alcohol and was arrested. After being treated for minor injuries, she was booked into San Joaquin County Jail on suspicion of felony gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated and two felony counts of driving under the influence of alcohol causing bodily injury.
— John Bays
Carjackings suspect arrested after Lodi chase
LODI — A man suspected of two carjackings and one attempted carjacking was arrested after leading Lodi police on a brief chase, according to Lt. Eric VerSteeg of the Lodi Police Department. The suspect’s identity was still being verified at press time.
Officers received reports of a carjacking attempt, followed by a successful carjacking, at about 2:15 p.m. Monday.
“He punched and struck the victims,” VerSteeg said. There were no serious injuries, he added.
Lodi officers located the suspect on Cherokee and Kettleman lanes, and attempted to stop him, VerSteeg said.
“He did not stop,” he said.
The suspect led officers on a chase of about a mile, to Cherokee Lane and Schaffer Drive, where police managed to stop him.
“He immediately charged the officers,” VerSteeg said.
The suspect was taken into custody. The San Joaquin County Sheriff’s Office has identified him as the suspect in another carjacking in county jurisdiction earlier Monday, in which he used a knife, police said. That victim was also unharmed.
— Kyla Cathey
Suspect in strongarm Lodi robbery arrested
LODI — A suspect was in custody after a strongarm robbery in Downtown Lodi on Monday morning.
Ramiro Lopez of Lodi, 55, was arrested on suspicion of robbing someone at the Bank of America branch on School Street at about 10:45 a.m. Monday, Lt. Eric VerSteeg of the Lodi Police Department said.
The victim was unharmed, he said.
Lopez is facing a charge of felony first degree robbery. He is currently in custody at San Joaquin County Jail. He is scheduled to appear in court at 12:15 p.m. Wednesday, with bail set at $100,000.
— Kyla Cathey
Parkinson’s Disease support group to meet
A support group for patients with Parkinson’s Disease and their caregivers will take place at 10 a.m. Monday at GracePoint Church, 801 S. Lower Sacramento Road, Lodi. For more information, call Robin Bray at 209-269-1080 or Maureen Olsen at 209-329-1185.
— John Bays
Lodi man arrested in string of storage break-ins
MODESTO — Police arrested two men suspected of breaking into 58 units at a northeast Modesto storage business over 47 days.
Friday’s announcement included a request for victims to call to identify items they lost. The thefts happened at Extra Space Storage, 2101 Sylvan Ave., and included firearms, antiques, clocks and other property.
The Modesto Police Department worked with other agencies on the arrest in Lodi of Daniel Newman, 28, of Stockton and Hector Hernandez, 22, of Lodi.
Modesto police launched the investigation April 13. Detectives found that lockers with varying sizes and contents had been hit at Extra Space Storage, the release said. They learned that the suspects were in the Stockton-Lodi area and set up surveillance, police said.
The arrests came when a Modesto officer saw them breaking into metal storage containers at a Lodi church, the release said. Newman and Hernandez are suspected of similar burglaries in Tuolumne and Mariposa counties.
They were booked into the San Joaquin County Jail on charges of burglary and possession of stolen property, along with weapon and probation violations.
Modesto had help on the arrests from Lodi and Stockton police and sheriff’s departments in Stanislaus, San Joaquin, Tuolumne and Mariposa counties.
— Modesto Bee
High levels measured in snowpack, reservoirs
Northern California rain and snow levels have soared with record wet weather in May, leaving the Sierra with higher-than-normal snowpack levels and pushing several reservoirs toward full capacity.
Downtown Sacramento already has broken record rainfall numbers in May, with more than 3.42 inches of rain this month, according to National Weather Service forecaster Karl Swanberg. The previous record of 3.25 inches was set in 1889.
Current statewide snowpack levels are being recorded at 20 inches of “snow water equivalent,” the depth of water that would result if the snowpack melted at once, a figure that is 167 percent above average for this time of year, according to the California Department of Water Resources.
Central Sierra snow sensors have recorded snowpack levels at 22.9 inches of snow water equivalent, 175 percent above average for this time of year. Snowpack is more than 10 feet deep in some areas, according to Department of Water Resources snowpack readings.
This year’s snowpack — the fifth largest recorded — peaked on March 31, according to the department.
This year "has been an extremely good year in terms of snowpack," said Jon Ericson, Department of Water Resources flood management chief, in a news release on May 2. "Based on our surveys, we are seeing a very dense, cold snowpack that will continue to produce run-off into the late summer."
With higher-than-average rain comes higher-than-average reservoir water levels, and Northern California's water managers will continue to release water from reservoirs in order to avoid spillover.
— Sacramento Bee