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KVTA Local News

Ventura Police Investigate Suspicious Death

KVTA News Wednesday October 18, 2017

Ventura police and the Medical Examiner's Office are investigating what police term the suspicious death of a man found in the Ventura River.

Around 2:35 PM Wednesday, police received a 911 call from someone who spotted a body submerged in the water in the Ventura River near the 101 Freeway overpass.

Officers and medical personnel responded and the male was pronounced dead at the scene.

The Ventura County Sheriff Search and Rescue Team responded and recovered the body.

Major Crimes detectives, crime scene personnel and the Sheriff's helicopter all responded to the scene.

They say the name of the victim was not immediately determined.

It will be up to the Medical Examiner to determine cause of death and to notify next of kin once they've confirmed an identity for the victim.

Murder Conviction In DUI Death Of Pedestrian

KVTA News Wednesday October 18, 2017


A Ventura County jury Wednesday convicted a Camarillo man of murder in the DUI traffic death of a pedestrian more than two years ago.

Prosecutors say 30-year-old Joseph Cantrell faces 20-years-to-life in prison when he is sentenced on December 12th.

The jury found him guilty of second degree murder and gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated in connection with the August 23, 2015 death of 54-year-old Randel Fillmore of Camarillo.

Fillmore was southbound on Mobil Avenue crossing Ponderosa Drive in the crosswalk and on a green light when he was struck

Prosecutors say Cantrell ran the red light when he hit Fillmore and then kept going.

He crashed a short distance away and was tackled by residents who held him until deputies arrived.

Cantrell had a .17 blood alcohol level.

The jury also found Cantrell guilty of fleeing the scene of a fatal accident and guilty of driving on a license that had been suspended because of a prior DUI conviction.

Ventura Man Arrested For Attack On Woman

KVTA News Wednesday October 18, 2017

Ventura police say they've arrested a man they describe as a vagrant for throwing a woman to the ground and beating her into unconsciousness.

It happened shortly after 10 AM Wednesday on the bike path near Harbor Boulevard and San Jon Road.

Police say the suspect, 24-year-old Garrett Sexton, was walking with the woman on the bike path when for some unknown reason he became enraged and attacked her without provocation.

They say he repeatedly punched the woman in the head before throwing her to the ground where he continued to beat her.

Police say the woman was unconscious and was taken to the hospital where she was being treated for what police say was a non-life threatening head injury.

Officers found Sexton in the nearby San Buenaventura State Beach and he was arrested for assault with great bodily injury.

His bail was set at $30,000.

According to jail and court records, Sexton had just been released from jail Wednesday morning.

Ventura Count court records indicate he has 47 prior convictions in the last five years, primarily for public intoxication and drug abuse but also petty theft, assault, vandalism, shoplifting and resisting arrest.

Simi Man Pleads Guilty In Sextortion Case

KVTA News Wednesday October 18, 2017


A Simi Valley man has pleaded guilty in connection in a sextortion case.

Prosectors say 22-year-old Alex Roberts pleaded guilty to six felony charges, including sexual battery by restraint and five counts of attempted extortion.

They say between March 2017 and May 2017, Roberts unsuccessfully attempted to extort nude photos from at least 11 known victims.

He used an app that disguised the device he was using and he falsely told the victims he had nude photos of them and he threatened to publish them if they did not meet his demands.

Prosecutors say Roberts was on felony probation for the same thing when he committed these new crimes.

He is facing six years and four months in state prison when he is sentenced in December. 

Roberts remains in jail on no bail.

Three Arrested In Camarillo Pharmacy Burglary

KVTA News Wednesday October 18, 2017

Deputies in Camarillo have three suspects in custody following a burglary at a pharmacy early Wednesday morning.

Shortly before 4 AM deputies responded to an alarm call at VU Pharmacy in the 400 block of Arneill Road.

They spotted several suspects leaving the building and there was a brief pursuit but deputies lost sight of the suspects.

However, a search of the area located the suspects in the area of Lewis Road and the 101 Freeway and they were detained and later arrested.

The suspects are two males and a female in their 20's from the Los Angeles area.

Garage Destroyed By Fire In Ventura

KVTA News Wednesday October 18, 2017

(Photo courtesy Ventura City Fire)

Fire destroyed a garage and threatened surrounding homes in Ventura Tuesday night.

It was reported around 7:24 PM in the 2100 block of Palomar Avenue in a neighborhood above the Ventura High School campus.

When Ventura City firefighters arrived on scene they found the detached garage fully involved in flames.

The fire was threatening to spread to the surrounding structures.

Firefighters were hampered in their initial attack by the fact that the flames had burned through overhead power lines and they had to isolate the live wires on the ground in order to gain access to the fire.

They were able to do that and they had the fire knocked down in about 22 minutes.

The fire was confined to the garage.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

Suspect Arrested In Port Hueneme Bomb Scare

KVTA News Tuesday October 17, 2017

(VCFD/FirePhotoVC)

Port Hueneme police say a Nevada man who said he was radicalized by his prison experience showed up at a restaurant near the Hueneme Pier Tuesday afternoon and claimed he had a bomb in his backpack and it was set to go off.

An employee of Surfside Seafood called 911 and police and fire personnel responded.

They found 46-year-old Manuel Maez of Nevada (see comments section for photo) in front of the restaurant and took him into custody.

The backpack and a suitcase were also with him outside the restaurant and when they looked into the backpack they saw what looked like an explosive device.

Maez told officers he had training and experience in bomb making.

The Ventura County Sheriff's Bomb Squad was called in and while they responded the restaurant, parking lot and beach area were evacuated.

The bomb squad arrived and x-rayed the device and determined it was a fake, made to look like an explosive device.

Maez was arrested for making a false bomb threat.

New Details About Weekend Violence In Oxnard

KVTA News Monday October 16, 2017

Oxnard police now say that both killings in that city over the weekend were the result of gun violence and two of the three shooting incidents are related.

They say the first two shootings Saturday night are gang related and related to each other.

The first was at 9:25 PM at the Arco station at Rose Avenue and Channel Islands Boulevard where a 20-year-old Oxnard man was shot in the leg and drove himself to the hospital with a non-life threatening wound.

Police say that was connected to the fatal shooting of a 22-year-old Oxnard man on Merced Place about 50 minutes later.

And now police are saying that the death of a 27-year-old man found dead in an alley near Azalea Street at 3 AM Sunday morning was also a fatal shooting.

Police had said they could not find any evidence the victim had been shot when they examined the body early Sunday morning at the scene but the autopsy Monday morning revealed the victim had been shot to death.

The two fatal shootings over the weekend are the 13th and 14th homicides of this year in Oxnard.

No suspects in any of the shooting incidents so far.

Woman Arrested For Fatal DUI Crash Near Fillmore

KVTA News Monday October 16, 2017

(Photo courtesy Ventura County Fire Department)

The CHP says they've arrested the driver of one of the vehicles involved in Friday night's fatal DUI crash on Highway 126 near Fillmore.

The say 20-year-old Maia Yasmine James of Palmdale was arrested for gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated in connection with the multi vehicle crash that killed her passenger, 20-year-old Ornella Liandra Jones, also from Palmdale.

The crash also injured four other people who are all recovering from their injuries.

The CHP says James was traveling westbound on the 126 west of Fillmore around 7:20 PM when she traveled into the eastbound lanes where she collided with another vehicle going eastbound.

One other vehicle was also involved in the crash.

The crash shut down the highway for several hours Friday night and Saturday morning.

James is in the Ventura County Jail with bail set at $250,000 and she is due in court Tuesday to be arraigned.

A Warm And Windy Sunday In Ventura County

KVTA News Sunday October 15, 2017

(Photo by James Stanley)

It was a warm and windy Sunday throughout Ventura County with high temperatures in the 90's everywhere and wind gusts ranging between 30-50 mph.

As this photo by James Stanley shows, even the bees tried to beat the heat by seeking shade under a bench on the Ventura Pier.

Fillmore Man Saves Swimmer's Life In Ventura

KVTA News Sunday October 15, 2017

Ventura City firefighters are calling a Fillmore man a hero for saving the life of a woman swimmer in the ocean off Surfer's Knoll Beach at Ventura Harbor Sunday afternoon.

They say that around 2 PM, 60-year-old Chris Woodard of Fillmore was walking his dog on the beach when he spotted two females who were in distrees after being caught in a rip current.

Firefighters say that Woodard went into the ocean in his street clothes and swam out to the females.

One of them, a 12-year-old, managed to break free of the rip current and made her way to shore.

But the other, her 21-year-old sister, was face down and unconscious.

Woodard got her head out of the water and brought her back to the beach, starting resuscitation as they reached shallow water.

Paramedics took over on the beach and the woman started breathing again and was semi conscious as she was taken to the hospital in serious condition.

Her younger sister was OK but taken to the hospital to be with her sister and also get checked out.

Woodard was OK and did not need medical attention.

Two Dead During Wave Of Shootings In Oxnard But It's Unclear How One Of The Fatal Victims Died

KVTA News Sunday October 15, 2017

Updated---Oxnard police responnded to four separate shooting incidents Saturday night and Sunday morning during which one person died from gunfire and a second died from unknown means.

A third victim was wounded by gunfire but will recover.

The first shooting happened around 9:25 PM at the Arco station at Rose Avenue and Channel Islands Boulevard.

Police say a 20-year-old Oxnard man was at the gasoline pumps when he was confronted by the suspect who shot him in the leg.

The victim drove himself to Saint John's Medical Center where he was treated for a non-life threatening gunshot wound.

The suspect was seen fleeing the area in a silver SUV.

The second shooting was fatal.

It happened around 10:10 PM in the 3300 block of Merced Place, a neighborhood that's south of Channel Islands Boulevard and east of Oxnard Boulevard.

That adult male victim was pronounced dead at the scene from an apparent gunshot wound and is considered the 13th homicide this year in Oxnard.

Then, around 2 AM, officers responded to a shots fired call in the 2500 block of El Dorado Avenue, a neighborhood north of Channel Islands Boulevard and west of Rice avenue.

They found evidence of a shooting, but no victims or suspects.

Finally, shortly before 3 AM, another shots fired call, this time in the 1300 block of Azalea Street, a neighborhood north of Gonzales Road and east of Ventura Road.

There they found an unresponsive 27-year-old Oxnard man in the south alley and he was pronounced dead at the scene.

But when detectives and the coroner's investigator examined the man, they found no outwards signs to indicate how he died.

They're hoping to determine that during an autopsy scheduled for Monday afternoon.

No names of victims have been released.

No information regarding any suspects or motives or whether there is any connection among the four incidents.

Ventura Woman Arrested After Vehicle/Foot Pursuit

KVTA News Sunday October 15, 2017

A Ventura woman was arrested following a vehicle and foot pursuit that ended with her allgedly fighting with officers.

The incident began around 2:30 PM Sunday afternoon at Mills Road and Mail Street near the Pacific View Mall when a Ventura patrol officer tried to make a traffic stop on a vehicle driven by 60-year-old Natalie Bustillos of Ventura.

Police say she failed to yield and then ran the red light heading east on Main.

They say at Callens Road she made a U-turn and headed back toward the mall.

Police say she entered the mall parking lot at a high rate of speed, almost hitting some pedestrians.

They say she got out of her vehicle in front of the Target Store at the north end of the mall and ran inside.

Officers chased her and they say when they tried to detain her she fought with them causing a minor injury to an officer.

Police say she was finally taken into custody and booked into the Ventura County Jail for felony evading, felony resisting arrest causing injury and driving a vehicle while under the influence of a controlled substance.

   heavy rain falling across the warned area. Flash flooding is
   expected to begin shortly if not already occuring. Flash flooding,
   mud, and debris flows are likely below the Solimar and Camarillo
   Springs burn areas. 
 
 * Some locations that will experience flooding include...
   Solimar Burn Area...
   Springs Burn Area...
   Oxnard...
   Ventura...
   Camarillo...
   Fillmore...
   Ojai...
   Santa Paula...
   La Conchita...
   and Highway 33 between Wheeler Springs and Rose Valley Road.
 
 PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...
 
 Turn around, don`t drown when encountering flooded roads. Most flood
 deaths occur in vehicles.
 
 Excessive runoff from heavy rainfall will cause flooding of small
 creeks and streams, urban areas, highways, streets and underpasses as
 well as other drainage areas and low lying spots.
 
 Please report flooding to your local law enforcement agency when you
 can do so safely.
 
 A Flash Flood Warning means that flooding is imminent or occurring.
 If you are in the warned area move to higher ground immediately.
 Residents living along streams and creeks should take immediate
 precautions to protect life and property.
 
 A Flash Flood Warning for a recent burn area means that flooding and
 debris flows are imminent or occurring. Residents living in or
 immediately below the burn area should take immediate precautions 
 to protect life and property. Quickly move away from the burn area 
 only if it is safe to do so, otherwise shelter in place and move 
 to a second storyor the highest location in your home to stay out 
 of the path of fast-moving water and debris flows.