Crime

Winton man arrested in Livingston drive-by shooting investigation, police say

A 23-year-old Winton man has been arrested in connection with a drive-by shooting in Livingston, authorities said.

According to Livingston Police Sgt. Ray Fong, Jose Refugio Olvera was taken into custody Monday by Merced County Sheriff’s Deputies at Winton Park at about 1 p.m..

A “Be on the Lookout” alert was issued for Olvera, after he was identified as a suspect in an Aug. 3 drive-by shooting, Fong said.

Officers responded to a report of shots fired on Saturday at about 8:13 p.m. in the area of Walnut Avenue and Aldrich Avenue. Authorities said a 20-year-old male victim was driving westbound on Walnut Avenue when the suspect who was traveling in the opposite direction, turned around and followed the victim.

Authorities said the suspect caught up to the victim’s vehicle and started shooting at him near the intersection of Walnut Avenue and Aldrich Avenue.

Four shell casings from a pistol were recovered from the scene, as well as a bullet that hit the victim’s vehicle. Authorities said the victim was not injured in the shooting and no damage was found to nearby structures.

In addition to a statement identifying Olvera as a suspect, police were able to identify the suspect vehicle as a brown Hyundai sedan in a video recording from a nearby residence. Fong said police have recovered the vehicle as evidence.

The shooting is being investigated as gang related, according to Fong.

Fong said Olvera refused to give a statement to police. He was booked into Merced County Jail on suspicion of attempted murder; shooting at an inhabited dwelling, building and occupied motor vehicle; discharging a firearm from vehicle and participation in criminal street gang activity.

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