Sheriff’s detectives made a major breakthrough in the violent robbery/torture case by recovering the firearms that were taken from the victim’s Gilroy residence in February of this year.
On Wednesday morning, Sheriff’s detectives conducted a search of Suspect Ernesto Gonzalez’s west San Jose apartment unit when they discovered several secret compartments, hidden beneath the carpeted floor, containing more than 20 handguns and 40 long rifles, including one assault rifle that was stolen from a Sunnyvale residence in a separate residential burglary case. In the compartments, detectives also located various collectible items that belong to the Gilroy victim.
This development came after detectives spent countless hours conducting follow-up investigation and interviews in an attempt to locate the stolen guns to prevent these weapons from landing in the wrong hands. Our Office also would like to credit the DA’s office, and allied law enforcement agencies such as San Jose Police, Gilroy Police, the Sunnyvale Department of Public Safety, the U.S. Marshals Service and the ATF for their unwavering assistance.
On Tuesday, May 3, Sheriff’s deputies and detectives served multiple search warrants at five different locations throughout the Bay Area. The operation resulted in the arrests of six suspects – including one juvenile – in connection with the home invasion/torture/attempted murder incident that occurred on Wednesday, February 6, at a residence in the 1000 block of Rucker Avenue, Gilroy.
On Sunday, February 6, the 59-year old victim arrived home around 9 p.m. when three male suspects ambushed him. The suspects then tied the victim up, tortured the victim by repeatedly striking him with pool queues and wooden sticks and pouring chemical substances over his face and body in an attempt to gain the combination to the victim’s safe. The beating was so severe that the victim had lost consciousness temporarily. When the suspects left the residence, the victim was able to untie himself and run to his neighbor’s house to report the incident to the Sheriff’s Office. The victim was transported to a local hospital and underwent surgery for life-threatening injuries.
The suspects took victim’s personal collections, including various guns, stamps, coins, playing cards etc. They also stole the victim’s pickup truck, which was located a short time later, fully engulfed, in the area of Highways 9 and 35, outside of the City of Saratoga.
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