Juvenile arrests for firearms possession soar 500%, police say

The number of juveniles arrested in possession of firearms has soared 500 percent this year, say Santa Rosa police who blame an increase in gang violence.

So far this year, 21 youths have been arrested for possessing guns, compared with just four in 2022, police said Friday. Five of Santa Rosa's nine homicides this year have been gang-related, police said.   

One gun arrest occurred Thursday when a group of teens, fleeing from a fight about 4:30 p.m. involving about 18 people from rival gangs, ran into a retail store at Santa Rosa Plaza, police said.   

Officers chasing the juveniles found two teens hiding behind a large piece of furniture in the store, police said.  


Gang rivalry fight involving several teens leads to 3 arrests, weapons recovered in the North Bay: police

Three 15-year-old boys were arrested by Santa Rosa police on Thursday. They are accused of participating in a large fight involving 18 juveniles. One of the boys is facing charges for carrying a loaded, unregistered firearm in public. 

One of the teens, a 15-year-old boy from Santa Rosa, had a loaded semi-automatic homemade 9 mm firearm, commonly referred to as a "ghost gun," concealed in his waistband, police said.   

Another teen, also a Santa Rosa boy aged 15, who ran separately into the store was found to have a knife in his waistband, police said.   

The juvenile in possession of the knife was arrested in September, after he ran away from a traffic enforcement stop and discarded a bag containing a loaded semi-automatic ghost gun, police said.