The Turlock Police Department has arrested a Modesto man suspected of carrying out multiple assaults and at least one robbery with the use of pepper spray.
The suspect was identified as Alfredo Valencia, 26, of Modesto.
For more than a month the police department has been getting reports of incidents involving a man using pepper spray.
On Oct. 5, the suspect committed an assault and battery when he used the pepper spray on a homeless man outside Food Maxx on Fulkerth Road. About 30 minutes later he used the pepper spray during a robbery at WalMart on Fulkerth Road. The suspect used the spray on a store clerk who stopped him from stealing a bike, though he did abscond with other store merchandise.
The police department has gotten other reports of the suspect threatening people with the pepper spray.
Around 8 a.m. Oct. 25, the suspect entered the Grocery Outlet store at 1330 W. Main St. in Turlock with two dogs — a Husky and a tan mix breed. After becoming upset that he would need to purchase a plastic bag, the suspect brandished pepper spray at the employees and then left the store.
On Tuesday,, Turlock Police Officers were dispatched to the 500 block of North Soderquist Road for a suspicious person spraying pepper spray into the air. When officers arrived, they located a Security Guard who had detained the suspect.
Valencia was positively identified in several of the previous crimes and was arrested. He was booked into the Stanislaus County Jail and charged with robbery, providing false identification to a police officer, brandishing a weapon, unlawful use of teargas, a person prohibited from possessing a weapon, obstructing a police officer in the performance of their duties and an outstanding misdemeanor warrant.
Anyone with any additional information regarding this case is encouraged to contact Detective Gina Giovacchini at (209) 668-6539.
The Turlock Police Department is an active participant in the Crime Stoppers Program. Callers can leave an anonymous tip by calling Crime Stoppers at (209) 521-4636 and may be eligible for a cash reward.