A woman and a man suspected of being part of a San Jose criminal gang were captured Wednesday after leading Morgan Hill police on a chase in a stolen vehicle allegedly used to ram a victim during an attempted car theft, police said today. At 12:23 p.m. Wednesday, Morgan Hill police responded to a report of people fighting over a possible hit-and-run collision near a Taco Bell eatery in the 16900 block of Monterey Road, police said.
Detectives would later learn that two suspects, Carmen Tellez, 20, and Miguel Angle Mejia, 18, both of San Jose, were allegedly trying to steal a car and were caught by the car’s owner, according to police. Mejia was sitting inside the victim’s car, tampering with the vehicle’s ignition, when the owner confronted him, police said. According to investigators, Tellez was nearby in a car and when the victim attempted to stop Mejia, Tellez drove and rammed the victim’s car twice, forcing the victim to jump out of the way to avoid being hit.
Mejia abandoned the victim’s car and got into the passenger seat of the car driven by Tellez, who then drove from the area. A Morgan Hill police officer observed the car leaving and when the officer tried to make a traffic stop, Tellez continued to drive, leading the officer on a chase that ended at the intersection of Monterey Road and Roeder Road in San Jose, where Tellez crashed into several vehicles, police said. The two suspects exited the car and fled on foot but were apprehended a short time later by Morgan Hill officers, according to police.
The pair is suspected of stealing the car Tellez was driving, which had been reported stolen to police earlier that day in Morgan Hill, officers said. Tellez was wanted on a $150,000 arrest warrant on a charge related to associating with a criminal gang, police said. She was placed under arrest on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon, possession of a stolen vehicle, felony evasion of police, attempting to steal a motor vehicle, possession of burglary tools, resisting arrest, conspiracy, hit-and-run and a gang enhancement, police said.
Mejia, who was being sought on a no-bail warrant, was arrested on suspicion of attempting to steal a motor vehicle, possession of burglary tools, resisting arrest, conspiracy and a gang enhancement, according to officers. Both suspects were booked into the Santa Clara County Main Jail, police said. Morgan Hill police are working with the Santa Clara Regional Auto Theft Task Force to see if the suspects were part of an auto theft crew, according to police. The Police Department is also taking part in an investigation with San Jose police into the pair’s association with a street gang in San Jose, officers said. Detectives suspect that Tellez and Mejia were involved in stealing cars in furtherance of gang activities, police said.
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