By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Pursuit ends with arrest, recovered merchandise
John Martini

A report of three women stealing clothes at a Turlock store turned into a two-county pursuit that ended with the capture of four suspects, one of whom was a parolee at large.

Shortly before 5:30 p.m. Saturday the Turlock Police Department received a report of a larceny in progress happening at Rainbow Clothing at 1810 Countryside Drive. The caller stated three women were stealing clothing from the store.

The officers responding to the call saw a vehicle matching the description from the theft enter onto Highway 99 headed south.

Officers followed and attempted to pull the vehicle over, but the driver refused to stop and sped off.

The pursuit went into Merced County, where the driver took the Collier Road exit in Delhi and stopped the vehicle.

The driver, a man later identified as John Martini, 34, ran from the vehicle while three women stayed behind.

While searching for the man, officers learned of a call from the 8000 block of Sycamore Road in Delhi in which a resident reported a man had tried to get into their home. Law enforcement responded to the scene and the suspect was apprehended nearby.

A helicopter from the California Highway Patrol and a K-9 unit from the Merced County Sheriff’s department assisted in the search.

Martini was arrested for a parole violation, resisting arrest, and felony evading. He also was taken into custody on several warrants, including one for evading.

The three women in the car were all issued citations. Michelle Rojas, 27, was cited for petty theft and two unrelated warrants. Jill Curick-Shanks, 27, and Heather Woody, 31 were both cited for petty theft.

Inside the vehicle officers found more than 20 items of clothing stolen from the Turlock store.