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Gunfire leads to chase and arrest

Modified: Friday, Feb 8th, 2013

Watsonville Police take one of two men into custody on suspicion of firing a gun in Corralitos and then trying to outrun police on Freedom Boulevard Friday. (Photos by Tarmo Hannula/Register-Pajaronian).

WATSONVILLE — Watsonville Police officers and Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s deputies responding to a report of gunfire Friday afternoon arrested two men who fled on foot from a vehicle after they were stopped on Freedom Boulevard.

The incident began at Yellow Brick and White roads in Corralitos, where a witness reported seeing two suspects in a charcoal gray Hyundai Elantra firing a gun from the vehicle into a hillside at approximately 2:20 p.m.

No injuries or damages were reported.

Soon after the call, a Santa Cruz County Sheriff's deputy got behind the suspect vehicle and pulled it over at 2031 Freedom Blvd., about five miles from where the shots were fired.

One suspect jumped out of the car and fled. He was chased by a Watsonville Police Officer into the parking lot of an auto body shop at the corner of Freedom and Airport boulevards.

The suspect, a 20-year-old man, ran into the business where he was arrested.

Johnny Angel Castillo had two prior felony convictions and was therefore prohibited from possessing a firearm, officials at the scene said.

Police said the man tossed a gun while he was running from the police. The loaded gun, a Glock 17 9mm, was recovered near where the vehicle was stopped.

“He ran into my shop,” said a technician who was working there. “The cops were right behind him, and they took him down and arrested him.”

“I’m glad he dropped the gun,” the man added. “Otherwise it would be a different story.”

The second man stayed in the vehicle and was arrested there.

The incident is still under investigation.

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