3 agents shot, injured in SF Bay area incident

May 4, 2012, 2:20 AM | Updated: 2:20 am

Associated Press

SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (AP) – Three Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents were shot and injured Thursday while serving “high-risk” warrants during an early morning sweep of San Francisco Bay area gang members, authorities said.

The agents suffered non-life-threatening injuries after being shot with an assault rifle and were hospitalized in stable condition following the incident in Petaluma that was in connection with the investigation of a 2010 gang-related triple homicide in South San Francisco.

“We owe them a debt of gratitude,” U.S. Attorney Melinda Haag said at a Thursday news conference in nearby South San Francisco. “My office is proud to be associated with professionals who put their lives on the line to protect others.”

Thirteen men were arrested _ many members of the 500 Block/C Street gang _ during Thursday’s sweep that also included two other cities. They are among 19 who were indicted last week on charges including racketeering and murder.

Four of the men charged with murder in the triple homicide could potentially face the death penalty, if convicted. Fifteen of the 19 are expected to make their first appearance in Federal court on Friday.

“This indictment and the related arrests serve as a warning to local gangs about the consequences of using violence and fear to maintain control of their so-called turf,” Clark Settles, Special Agent in Charge for Homeland Security in San Francisco, said Thursday.

During Thursday’s early morning raid in Petaluma, several witnesses reported hearing gunshots and loud sounds around 4 a.m. as one of the agents shot was airlifted from the scene.

Caroline Uland, who lives nearby, told the Press Democrat of Santa Rosa that she was awakened by an explosive sound.

“It was kind of frightening,” she said.

Bob Everhart, the manager of a nearby Best Western Hotel, told the newspaper that he heard multiple gunshots, some yelling and then a second round of gunfire.

When he went out to investigate, he was ordered to go back in.

“The neighborhood was on lockdown at that point,” Everhart said.

A police officer told Everhart around 6 a.m. that guests could eventually leave their rooms to get breakfast.

Joseph Sullivan, who lives in the area, said that an unidentified man, a woman and two children under the age of 12 lived at the house where the raid occurred.

Several other neighbors also said cars came to and from the house frequently, sometimes double-parking in the street.

“To be honest, I thought they were selling weed out of the house, but obviously something more crazy was going on,” Sullivan said.

Dozens of officers _ some in SWAT gear _ swarmed the area early Thursday centered on the probe of a December 2010 drive-by fatal shootings in South San Francisco.

Gonzalo Avalos, 19, Omar Cortez, 18 and Hector Flores, 20 _ who police said were alleged gang members _ were gunned down while walking with a group after four men riding in a brown Chevrolet Impala with tinted windows drove up and opened fire.

Three others were also wounded in the 2010 shootings. South San Francisco police Lt. Alan Normandy said Thursday that the triple murder investigation subsequently expanded to include other agencies, including the Department of Homeland Security.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

United States News

(File Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)...
KTAR.com

3 arrested after 86 undocumented immigrants found in Phoenix

Three people were arrested last week for allegedly conspiring to smuggle nearly 90 undocumented immigrants into Phoenix for profit, authorities said. 
5 hours ago
Associated Press

UK warship seizes advanced Iranian missiles bound for Yemen

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — A British Royal Navy vessel seized a sophisticated shipment of Iranian missiles in the Gulf of Oman earlier this year, officials said Thursday, pointing to the interdiction as proof of Tehran’s support for Yemen’s Houthi rebels in the embattled country. The British government statement was striking in that it […]
5 hours ago
FILE - Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian gestures during a press conference at the ...
Associated Press

China lashes out at US, British intelligence services

BEIJING (AP) — The United States is “the biggest threat to world peace, stability and development,” China said Thursday, continuing its sharp rhetoric in response to U.S. accusations of Chinese spying and threats to the international order. Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian’s comments came a day after the head of the FBI and the leader […]
5 hours ago
FILE - Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., speaks with reporters following a closed-door ...
Associated Press

Dems want to tax high earners to protect Medicare solvency

WASHINGTON (AP) — Senate Democrats want to boost taxes on some high earners and use the money to extend the solvency of Medicare, the latest step in the party’s election-year attempt to craft a scaled-back version of the economic package that collapsed last year, Democratic aides told The Associated Press. Democrats expect to submit legislative […]
5 hours ago
FILE - Flags of countries of the world hang over an empty Terminal E, at Logan Airport in Boston, S...
Associated Press

FAA to give airports $1 billion for terminals and upgrades

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Biden administration is giving nearly $1 billion to 85 airports to expand and upgrade terminals and other facilities, using money approved in last year’s huge infrastructure bill. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said the projects will help meet future demand for travel and make flying safer and more efficient. “I don’t think […]
5 hours ago
FILE - Phoenix Mercury center Brittney Griner during the first half of Game 2 of basketball's WNBA ...
Associated Press

Griner’s Moscow trial resumes amid calls for US to seek deal

MOSCOW (AP) — Jailed American basketball star Brittney Griner returns to a Russian court Thursday amid a growing chorus of calls for Washington to do more to secure her release nearly five months after she was arrested on drug charges. Griner was detained in February at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo Airport after vape canisters with cannabis oil […]
5 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

(Courtesy Condor)...
Condor Airlines

Condor Airlines shows passion for destinations from Sky Harbor with new-look aircraft

Condor Airlines brings passion to each flight and connects people to their dream destinations throughout the world.
...
CANVAS ANNUITY

Best retirement savings rates hit 4.30%

Maximize your retirement savings with guaranteed fixed rates up to 4.30%. Did you know there is a financial product that can give you great interest rates as you build your retirement savings and provide you with a paycheck for life once you retire? It might sound too good to be true but it is not; this product is called an annuity.
...
Christina O’Haver

BE FAST to spot a stroke

Every 40 seconds—that’s how often someone has a stroke in the United States. It’s the fifth leading cause of death among Americans, with someone dying of a stroke every 3.5 minutes.
3 agents shot, injured in SF Bay area incident