Deputies respond to gun shots, arrest suspect following search

By The Leader Staff
Suspect Raul Garcia
Suspect Raul Garcia

On Wednesday, February 2, at about 6:20 p.m., Kings County Sheriff's deputies were dispatched to Hanford's Beulah Street regarding shots fired. Deputies searched the area but were initially unable to locate any evidence of a shooting.

While continuing the search, a witness contacted deputies and described a subject named Raul Garcia, 31, who they say had been shooting a gun at his home. The witness also told deputies that the suspect, Garcia, may have been removing various fixtures around his house and may have been under the influence of drugs.

Garcia left the home just before deputies gained entry. Deputies located a sawed-off 12-gauge shotgun in the suspect's bedroom, and a witness told authorities that Garcia had other firearms and may have left the residence with a handgun.

Deputies, along with officers from the Hanford Police Department, established a perimeter in an attempt to apprehend the suspect. Additional witnesses contacted law enforcement and told dispatchers that Garcia was seen jumping fences one street over to the east (Babe Ruth Street).

The department's "Air1," while patrolling in the skies overhead, located a heat signature near a home on Babe Ruth Street. It appeared a person was hiding, and deputies utilized a drone to get a closer look at the subject. It was confirmed that it was Garcia. Because Garcia was last seen armed with a handgun, the Kings County SWAT Team was dispatched to the scene.

Kings County SWAT negotiated with Garcia and convinced him to surrender.

Deputies located a live handgun round in Garcia's pocket and an additional round in his residence's backyard. However, they were unable to find the handgun.

A records check revealed that Garcia had been convicted of a prior felony and could not possess firearms or ammunition.

During an interview, the suspect, Garcia, told authorities he ran from the residence because he heard voices and talked negatively toward him.

Deputies booked Garcia into the Kings County Jail on the charges of a felon in possession of a firearm, felon in possession of ammunition, willfully discharging a gun in a negligent manner and possession of a firearm without an identification mark. Bail was set at $85,000.

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