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Home invasion leads to fight, arrest

Posted: Wednesday, Feb 20th, 2013

Cuactemoc Zamora

SANTA CRUZ — One man is in custody and another is at large following a bizarre home invasion early Wednesday on Poplar Street.

The home invasion comes on the coattails of a rash of serious crimes in Santa Cruz, including a fatal shooting outside of the Red Bar downtown Feb 9. A UC Santa Cruz student was shot in the head during a robbery Feb. 11, and another UC Santa student was raped and brutally beaten Saturday on campus in daylight hours.

In the Wednesday incident, Santa Cruz Police Deputy Chief Steve Clark said a couple, who had two children, 8 and 12, asleep in the same Poplar Street home, were abruptly awakened at 4:30 a.m. when two intruders switched on their bedroom light.

“I wake up and see two men standing there asking us for money,” said Yarry Gonzalez. “We were sound asleep. The lights come on, and I see a pair of masked men. One of them has my wife’s scarf wrapped around his face and the other guy is wearing my black bandana. The one guy had taken my decoration sword off the wall, which I know isn’t sharp and doesn’t even have a point. They asked us for money, and when I tried to answer they’d interrupt and tell me to shut up.”

At one point the taller, thinner burglar ordered Gonzalez and his wife, Cricket, out of bed while the other, heavy-set man attempted to tie Gonzalez up with duct tape.

“It was an old roll of tape and didn’t really work,” Gonzalez said. “And besides, the big guy was wearing gloves, and he couldn’t get the tape to work. They were trying to tie my hands behind my back and couldn’t. The big guy was loaded — you could smell the alcohol on him.”

That’s when the big guy, who police later identified as Cuactemoc Zamora, 28, of Santa Cruz, apparently got frustrated and yanked a computer cord from the wall and tried to use it to tie Gonzalez up.

For the complete article see the 02-21-2013 issue.

Click here to purchase an electronic version of the 02-21-2013 paper.

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