Armed Burglary Suspects Captured
On 7-22-2012 at about 3:40 AM, Hemet Police Department Communications Center received an alarm call at a home in the “Seven Hills” senior community located in Hemet. When Officers arrived at the home on Blue Spruce Drive, they heard footsteps coming from inside. The home was dark, and Officers saw an outdoor patio chair had been placed underneath an open window.
Hemet Police Officers, including an Officer from our K-9 team, surrounded the home and made verbal announcements, urging whoever was inside to come out and surrender. Receiving no response, the officers formulated a plan, and entered the home with the K-9.
Once inside the home, Officers found a total of three suspects hiding in the attached garage. The suspects had sat down on the floor, and pulled their black shirts completely over their bodies in attempt to hide. The K-9 quickly alerted the officers to the suspect’s presence, and all three were taken into custody without incident. One of the suspects was concealing a loaded, .38 caliber revolver, with the hammer in the cocked position. All three suspects were arrested and charged with burglary, conspiracy, and possession of stolen property.
About 2 1/2 hours after the initial three suspects were taken into custody, Hemet Police Communications Center received reports of a fourth suspect walking in the senior community carrying a rifle. This alert citizen did an outstanding job updating responding officers of the suspect’s ever changing location. Hemet Police were able to saturate the area and quickly located the fourth suspect and took him into custody. The rifle, along with a duffle bag full of stolen items, was located with the fourth suspect. In total, three guns were recovered along with various items of jewelry, money and other property. Two juveniles and two adults are in custody for numerous charges.
One of the suspects in this case, a 19 year old man named Winnie McElfresh (pictured below), has been arrested by Hemet Police numerous times for burglary. He also faces charges stemming from thefts in the unincorporated area of Hemet. The other adult Suspect, Rodney Jeter, also has a criminal background, and has had contact with our department in the past.
Winnie McElfresh, 19 year old resident of Hemet
Rodney Jeter, 21 year old resident of Hemet
Two juveniles whose names will not be released.