SOLEDAD — Two men and a woman have been arrested for child endangerment as well as for weapons and narcotics violations in Soledad.
On May 31, at 2 p.m., a South Monterey County Task Force detective spotted a known parolee in a vehicle driving in a known gang area. The parolee saw the detective and fled at a high rate of speed down Metz Road, with the detective following and calling for backup units.
Additional Task Force members and officers from Soledad and Greenfield responded to the area to assist.
The suspect vehicle finally stopped on Metz Road between Soledad and Greenfield. Officers then conducted a high-risk traffic stop on the vehicle, where they found three adults, three toddlers and a 10-day-old baby.
Police said the driver, Gabriel Quezada, was found with a firearm in his waistband. Jenise Hernandez-Tejada and Raymundo Rodriguez were also removed from the vehicle.
A rifle was found in the trunk of the vehicle, and two additional loaded firearms were “hidden in the baby carrier” with the newborn still in it, police said.
All three adults were immediately taken into custody. Quezada and Hernandez-Tejada are the parents of all the children. The suspects and the children were all transported to the Soledad Police Department.
A search warrant was then executed in the 800 block of Prado Drive in Soledad, where Quezada and Hernandez-Tejada reside with their children. An additional six weapons were found, along with ammunition, various knives and 26 grams of cocaine, in the room they all share. Several of the weapons were determined to be “ghost guns,” police said.
Quezada, Hernandez-Tejada and Rodriguez were transported to the Monterey County Jail and lodged for child endangerment and weapons and narcotics violations. A Superior Court Judge was contacted and ordered that the children be placed in protective custody.
South Monterey County Task Force consists of the Soledad and Greenfield police departments, Drug Enforcement Administration and Homeland Security Investigations. The Task Force can be contacted at 831-223-5139 with any information regarding firearms, narcotics, human trafficking and gang activity.