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Four local men face fraud charges for nut scheme

A federal grand jury has indicted four Stanislaus County men on charges they carried out a scheme that cheated local almond growers and processors out of millions of dollars.Randal Alfred Burtis, 49, of Patterson; Ronald John Salado, 58, of Modesto; Robert Morris Adams, 44, of Turlock; and Jason M. Espinola, 29, of Hughson were indicted by the grand jury on Aug. 6. Burtis, Salado, and Adams are charged with conspiracy to commit mail fraud and bank fraud. The indictment also charges Burtis and Salado with money laundering. Espinola is charged with bank fraud.Burtis was the general manager of ...

August 13, 2010 | Sabra Stafford | Crime


One teen caught, two sought for Riverbank killing

One of the teenagers wanted for the killing of a Riverbank man has been apprehended, while the other two remain at large.Jah-Kari Phyall, 15, of Turlock was captured around 2 p.m. Thursday in Modesto by the Stanislaus County Sheriff's Department. Phyall was arrested without incident, said sheriff spokesman Andrew Winter. Phyall was booked into the Stanislaus County Juvenile Hall and is being held on charges of murder, carjacking, and gang-related enhancements.The sheriff's department released no other details regarding the arrest of Phyall.The two other suspects, Turlock Diaz, 14, of Turlock and Daniel Pantoja, 18 ...

August 13, 2010 | Sabra Stafford | Crime


Dare gone awry leads to chase, arrest for teen

The charges were mounting up for a teenager who stole a vehicle on a dare and led law enforcement on a multi county pursuit.No one was injured during the pursuit, despite the teen ramming a Merced County Sheriff deputy's patrol car twice.The incident began around 6 p.m. Sunday when the Stanislaus County Sheriff's Department was taking a report of a stolen 2010 Chevrolet Traverse SUV from the Excell Center at 2513 Youngstown Rd. in Turlock. The suspect was a 15-year-old boy staying at the group home and had last been seen heading towards Hilmar.The ...

August 10, 2010 | Sabra Stafford | Crime


Court: Life without parole for 2006 murder of Turlock man

A Modesto man will spend the rest of his life in prison for the murder and robbery of a Turlock man.Ramon Guardado, 26, was handed down a sentence of life without the possibility of parole, plus an additional year for the use of a knife. The sentence was imposed Friday by Stanislaus County Superior Court Judge Scott Steffen, nearly a year and a half after Guardado's conviction and four years since the homicide.Guardado was convicted in December 2008 of first degree murder for the stabbing death of 48-year-old Joseph Badal of Turlock.Badal was a native of ...

August 10, 2010 | Sabra Stafford | Crime


Two Turlock teens wanted for fatal shooting

The Stanislaus County Sheriff's Department has identified the three homicide suspects involved in a fatal shooting outside a Riverbank convenience store and the wanted include two Turlock teenagers.The sheriff's department is actively seeking Daniel Pantoja, 18, of Riverbank and Turlock Diaz, 14, and Jah-Kari Phyall, 15, both of Turlock, for the murder of Chaz Bettencourt, 21. All three should be considered armed and dangerous said sheriff spokesman Deputy Andrew Winter.The fatal shooting happened around 12:30 p.m. Thursday at an AM/PM store at the intersection of Highway 108 and Oakdale Road in Riverbank. Bettencourt ...

August 10, 2010 | Sabra Stafford | Crime


Turlock men plead not guilty in beating death outside cockfight

The two Turlock men accused of beating to death a man at a cockfight in Livingston have pled not guilty to charges of voluntary manslaughter.

August 06, 2010 | Sabra Stafford | Crime


Inmate found dead at county jail

An inmate housed at the Stanislaus County Jail was found dead inside his cell Wednesday morning.

August 06, 2010 | Sabra Stafford | Crime


Armed robber hits wireless store

A masked gunman robbed a Turlock store Wednesday and got away with an undisclosed amount of cash, according to the Turlock Police Department.The suspect entered the KB Communications store at 753 N. Golden State Blvd. at 4:47 p.m. He had a cloth over his mouth and brandished a handgun.The robber took the cash and left without anyone being injured.The suspect was described as a man in his mid 20s. He is about 5 feet, 6 inches tall with a stock build, between 160 to 200 pounds. He was wearing a beanie, a long-sleeved shirt, sweat ...

August 06, 2010 | Sabra Stafford | Crime


Open House and Safety Fair

The Turlock Police Department is inviting the public down to the station for the 5th Annual Open House and Safety Fair.The fair starts at 10 a.m. and will run through 2 p.m. today at 900 N. Palm St.There will be canine and SWAT demonstrations, safety information, hot dogs and refreshments and a dunk tank. Goodie bags will be given out to children.

August 06, 2010 | Sabra Stafford | Crime


Teen driver in collision with big rig

A vehicle driven by a 13-year-old boy was broadsided by a big rig when he tried to cross in front of it, resulting in serious injuries for himself and another teen.

August 06, 2010 | Sabra Stafford | Crime


Cash register bandit rings up arrest

The man suspected of stealing cash registers from several businesses in Turlock and Merced County was apprehended Friday night in Turlock.

August 03, 2010 | Sabra Stafford | Crime


Cockfighting melee leaves two dead, two jailed

The violence of a cockfight spilled out of the ring Sunday when one man fatally shot another over a $10 discrepancy in a wager made between the two men.

August 03, 2010 | Sabra Stafford | Crime


New court hours

Starting Monday the Stanislaus County Superior Court clerk's office will be operating under extended hours.The clerk's office will now be open from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., which is an extension of one hour from the previous operating hours. The change will be in affect at the main courthouse at 800 11th St. and 801 10th St., both in Modesto.This change comes a year after the court was forced to reduce public access hours to the clerk's offices in response to state imposed budget reductions. With approval of a new budget ...

July 30, 2010 | Sabra Stafford | Crime


Police seek suspect in strong armed robberies

Two strong armed robberies were reported in Turlock over the last few days and police believe the same suspect carried off both heists.

July 30, 2010 | Sabra Stafford | Crime


Anthrax hoax costly for Sacramento man

A Sacramento man has been ordered to pay nearly $7,000 for an anthrax hoax that targeted several businesses, media outlets and Congressman George Radanovich's Modesto office.A federal judge ruled Marc M. Keyser, 68, will have to pay the victims and emergency personnel who responded to his hoax. Earlier this year Keyser was sentenced to 51 months in federal prison and three years of supervised release.Keyser admitted to mailing over 100 packages containing fake anthrax to media outlets and politicians throughout the country and to Starbucks and McDonalds in Sacramento. Keyser was convicted by a jury on ...

July 27, 2010 | Sabra Stafford | Crime


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Articles by Section - Crime


Former Jura's owner arrested for sexual assault

The former owner of Jura's Pizza Parlor in Oakdale and namesake of the Turlock restaurant was arrested on Monday for a sexual assault incident that occurred at the now closed Oakdale location in September.

October 20, 2014 | BY RICHARD PALOMA Turlock Journal | Crime


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