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Police & Fire

Napa shooting suspect arrested in Richmond driving car stolen from Napa

Richmond Police arrested a suspected Napa car thief Thursday who turned out to be the man wanted for shooting two people outside a downtown Napa bar in December.

Napa Police said Ruben Alvarez Villafan, 43, tried to flee from Richmond Police but was cornered on a dead-end street and arrested without further incident.

Villafan is suspected of shooting two men outside Downtown Joe’s early in the morning of Dec. 13. Napa Police had obtained a $1 million warrant for his arrest.

The shooting occurred shortly after 1 a.m. following an argument in the evening between groups at the bar, police said. The victims, ages 24 and 33, were hospitalized for a period.

When arrested in Richmond, Villafan gave a false name and date of birth to officers, police said. During booking his true name was established. He was wanted for two Napa warrants for the shooting and possession of cocaine for sale, police said.

Villafan was driving a car that had been reported stolen earlier in the day from Napa, police said.

It is unknown if Villafan is connected to a recent string of Napa auto thefts. In the past two weeks, at least 14 cars have been reported stolen in Napa, police said.

Villafan was booked Friday morning into the Napa County jail.

American Canyon police: 2 men arrested as robbery suspects

Two men were being held at the Napa County jail Friday morning for possible robbery and assault charges following an incident Thursday night in American Canyon.

American Canyon Police said they were called at 7:40 p.m. on a report of an assault at the corner of Landana Street and Rio Grande. They found a crowd of 15 to 20 residents and the victim who had visible injuries.

Officers learned that Victor Hugh Garcia, 40, and a second suspect had forcefully removed the victim from his vehicle, pointed a “black handgun” at him, and stolen his cell phone, Chief Oscar Ortiz said in a news release.

Garcia was arrested at a home on the 200 block on Landana.

Aided by detectives from the Napa County Sheriff’s Office, police identified the second suspect as William Ray Middleton, 38, of Napa. Search warrants for Garcia’s home in American Canyon and Middleton’s home in the 100 block of Wise Drive in Napa were obtained and executed.

Middleton was arrested at his home. During the search warrant, detectives located a black Glock pistol at the Wise Drive location, along with two AR-style rifles with no serial numbers. The firearms were seized and booked into evidence.

During the search warrant at the Landana Street home, officers located the victim’s cell phone in a trash can.

Garcia was booked for possible robbery and assault charges, Middleton for robbery.

Robbery suspect killed in confrontation with Napa deputies Friday afternoon

One person is dead after an officer-involved shooting near the Napa airport on Friday afternoon, though investigators are saying little about the incident yet.

Officers were notified of a robbery in the city of Napa around 2:11 p.m., sheriff’s office spokesman Henry Wofford said Friday evening. He declined to specify what business or the nature of the robbery.

Sheriff’s deputies spotted the suspect’s vehicle on Highway 29 a short time later near the intersection of Highway 221 and the suspect fled.

The chase ended when the suspect stopped in the vicinity of the Napa County Airport, Wofford said. Shots were fired, though investigators are still looking into whether the suspect initiated the confrontation.

The suspect was killed in the shooting, Wofford said. The deputy who fired shots was not injured, nor were any other officers or civilians. The officer is on administrative leave, pending an investigation.

The suspect has not yet been identified, and the sheriff’s office declined to offer any other information, including the gender of the person.

The incident is under investigation by the county’s Major Crimes Taskforce, which includes detectives from county departments and the district attorney’s office.

You can reach City Editor Kevin Courtney at kcourtney@napanews.com or at 707-256-2217. 

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