Gun-shop rooftop burglary suspects nabbed

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Here's the Rap Sheet for Feb. 25, 2016:

COPSHOP THISCLOSE TO GUNSHOP: Want weapons? Don't steal them if the gun shop you're breaking into is right behind the Milpitas Police Department.

Four suspects learned that lesson the hard way when they were arrested during a botched predawn burglary.

The incident  began at 1:48 a.m. Wednesday when a Milpitas police sergeant was getting ready to leave the station on North Milpitas Boulevard when he heard a ringing alarm coming from Target Masters, a shooting range and gun shop located on Minnis Circle, directly behind police headquarters.

The sergeant then saw a 17-year-old Hayward boy "stumble of the rooftop" of the business and run into the driver's seat of a Toyota Camry with a 15-year-old Oakland boy inside, police said. Another officer stopped the car and arrested the two boys without incident.

The sergeant then found a third suspect, another 17-year-old Hayward boy trying to exit the front glass doors of the gun shop and "noticed the suspect was carrying a firearm," said police Lt. Raj Maharaj. The sergeant ordered the suspect to drop the gun and stay still, authorities said.

Police then learned that a fourth suspect was unaccounted for and called Santa Clara sheriff's deputies and San Jose police to provide backup.

They spotted Jose David Fernandez, 19, of Hayward fleeing over a 10-foot wall at the city's corporation yard and running along some railroad tracks, police said. San Jose police arrested him.

The Milpitas police SWAT team and San Jose police K-9 officers unlocked the front door of the gun shop, freeing the 17-year-old who had been stuck inside.

NOT GUILTY OF VEHICULAR MANSLAUGHTER: A woman has been acquitted of vehicular manslaughter in San Francisco after it was determined that a faulty brake pedal was to blame for a man's death, Public Defender Jeff Adachi said today.

Sonia Wright, 51, had originally been charged with the death of 67-year-old Emmitt Jackson.

On Oct. 4, 2013, Wright was driving her electrical company's 2005 Ford F-150 pickup truck and parked it in a metered spot near Pacific Avenue and Polk Street to wait for a loading zone to open up.

When a car that was in the zone left, Wright planned to drive forward 20 feet to take the spot. But for some reason unknown to her at the time, Wright's foot became stuck on the gas. The truck lurched forward and hit Jackson, an electrician who was putting tools into his truck ahead of her.

Jackson's legs were pinned between the pickup truck and his truck. He died of a heart attack in a hospital later that day.

Police arrested her on suspicion of driving under the influence even though Breathalyzer tests detected no alcohol in her system, Adachi said. She spent two months in jail, before toxicology tests showed that no drugs were in her system, he said.

Cell phone records showed she wasn't using her phone in the 10 minutes before the crash, Adachi said.

The mystery was solved by an accident investigator retained by the public defender's office.

The investigation determined that the brake pedal on the pickup truck "was entirely missing the rubber tread that provides friction and grip for the foot," Adachi said. The investigator testified about this during the trial.

"This was no crime," said Wright's attorney, Deputy Public Defender Chesa Boudin. "It was a tragic accident and that’s exactly what the evidence showed. Ms. Wright wishes more than anything she could fix what happened.  Of course that’s impossible, but the jury did the next best thing by providing closure to both families after three years."

Adachi faulted prosecutors for filing criminal charges against Wright in the first place. 

"Ms. Wright’s prosecution only compounded the trauma of that terrible day. She is relieved that her legal saga is behind her," Adachi said.

KNOW THESE GUYS? San Jose police are asking for the public's help in identifying two men who broke into a storage unit in a parking garage.

The break-in happened on the 2800 block of South Bascom Avenue about 6 a.m. Sunday. The men damaged a surveillance camera, forced a lock and stole two bikes, police said.

You can see video of the incident here.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Detective Sergeant Mike Montonye at (408) 277-4401.  

You can see Henry Lee daily on KTVU. If you have a tip for Henry, send an email to or contact him on Twitter