VENTURA COUNTY, Calif. - Police officers in Ventura County arrested two vehicle theft suspects in separate incidents just minutes apart from each other Tuesday.
An Oxnard man, previously convicted four times for auto theft, was arrested for driving a stolen vehicle in Oxnard.
The owner of the stolen car saw their vehicle driving near Channel Islands Boulevard and Dupont Street around 4 p.m. and reported it to police.
The Oxnard Police Department Auto Theft Task Force and Property Crimes Detectives located the vehicle in the area of Ives Avenue and Rose Avenue and made a traffic stop.
The driver, 30-year-old Oxnard resident Jonathan Chavez, was arrested for unlawful driving of a stolen vehicle and unlawful possession of a stolen vehicle.
A records check revealed Chavez has been convicted four times for auto theft and has served 3.5 years for these convictions. Chavez now faces new charges for auto theft with a prior conviction.
Meanwhile in Ventura, police responded to another car theft in the 900 Block of Weber Circle, minutes before the Oxnard arrest.
The owner of a vehicle left it unlocked while working in the area and returned to find it missing.
At 3:49 p.m., Ventura Police began receiving several 9-1-1 calls about an erratic driver, identified as Jonathan Coronado.
The calls started in the 500 Block of Ventura Avenue and reported Coronado moving east through the city. One caller reported being rear-ended by the vehicle at the intersection of Seaward Avenue and Ocean Avenue.
A patrol officer saw the vehicle traveling on Seaward Avenue near Harbor Blvd and initiated a traffic stop. Coronado yielded at Harbor Blvd & Beachmont Street but did not comply with officers’ commands. He engaged in a standoff of about 30 minutes before he was successfully taken into custody.
Coronado was arrested and and booked at Ventura County Jail for possession of a stolen vehicle, hit and run, resisting/delaying arrest, and a parole violation.
A review of the Ventura County Superior Court website shows that Coronado has previously been convicted of Trespassing and Resisting/Delaying a Peace Officer.
Police say many stolen vehicle crimes are preventable. Here are some tips to prevent it from happening to you:
- Never leave your vehicle unlocked, not even for a minute.
- Never leave your keys in the vehicle, even if you think they are “hidden.”
- Don’t leave your vehicle idling and unattended.
- Wheel locks, brake pedal locks and steering wheel locks are also effective.