Intoxicated man threatens pastor, deputy

A drunk man was arrested on Saturday on suspicion of possessing concealed weapons following a disturbance at the Word of Life Fellowship in Mi-Wuk Village where he threatened to fight a pastor and punched a bystander.

At around 1 p.m., a visibly intoxicated man was observed at the Word of Life Fellowship property on the 24600 block of Highway 108 and bystanders were concerned he would soon be driving, Sgt. Andrea Benson said.

Before the arrival of the deputies, the “belligerent” and “aggressive” subject threatened the pastor after the pastor asked him to leave the property. A group of observers said the suspect punched another man when he was confronted, Benson said.

The man was detained by deputies, who searched him and his vehicle.

The man was found to be in possession of four knives, Benson said, with three hidden in his clothes and another inside his boot. Under the passenger seat of his 2006 blue Honda Pilot was a 9mm black Norinco L213 pistol, and a records check indicated no information for registration of the firearm.

After being arrested, the man turned combative toward a deputy who was transferring him to the Tuolumne County Jail.

The man made threats indicating he knew the identity of the deputy, and threatened to beat and kill both him and his family, Benson said.

At the Tuolumne County Jail after 3 p.m., the man refused to cooperate with a blood alcohol test, Benson added, but the man was found to have a BAC at .139 at about 7 p.m.

Kelly Anthony Correia, 36, of Sonora, was booked on suspicion of carrying a concealed dirk or dagger, resisting an executive officer and misdemeanor charges carrying a concealable firearm, disorderly conduct, and battery.

He was booked into the Tuolumne County Jail on $20,000 bail and as of Monday evening remained in custody.

Shoplifter claims false identity after arrest

A Sonora man twice misrepresented his identity to a Sonora Police officer after shoplifting from Grocery Outlet on South Washington Street, but was finally identified following a fingerprint scan at the Tuolumne County Jail.

After 1:30 p.m. on Friday, a shoplifter was detained by Grocery Outlet employees before the arrival of a Sonora Police officer.

The man did not have an identification card, Acting Chief of Police Turu VanderWiel said, and provided a name and birth date on the scene that could not fully corroborate his identity.

VanderWiel said it was “normal” for a suspect to be taken to the Tuolumne County Jail to have their identity confirmed, even when shoplifting was commonly encouraged to be a “cite and release” charge due to the maxed-out occupancy of the jail.

The measure was taken, he added, because if a person’s identity was not confirmed, another person could “incur financial or criminal liability from that action” and be held liable for another person’s crimes.

At the jail, a Sonora Police officer confirmed that the name given was not a match to the suspects identity. The man again attempted to give a false name, but the officer determined that the second name was also not honest.

Only during a fingerprint Live Scan of the suspect was his identity revealed as a Sonora resident on California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation Parole, a Sonora Police Department news release said.

Zakary Dean Howerton, 27, of Sonora, was booked on suspicion of impersonation to make another person liable and misdemeanor charges petty theft.

The felony charge was booked on $10,000 bail, but Howerton was held on a no bail parole hold for his felony probation violation. He remained in the Tuolumne County Jail as of Monday evening.

Credit card thief sought

The Tuolumne County Sheriff’s Office is seeking the identity of a man believed to be responsible for a Jan. 24 burglary of a home in Strawberry and using a stolen credit card to rack up charges in Sonora and Oakdale.

During a burglary on Pine Avenue, Sgt. Andrea Benson said, the man stole a set of keys, two firearms, a Husqvarna chainsaw, two boxes of .357 ammunition and two credit cards.

The next day, she said, one of those credit cards was used to incur over $2,000 in charges at the Sonora Walmart and at the 7-11 and McDonalds in Oakdale.

Surveillance footage of the subject shows either a Caucasian or Latino man in a red hat and a beige jacket leaving a business. The Tuolumne County Sheriff’s Office also included photos of a silver sedan believed to have been operated by the suspect.

The Tuolumne County Sheriff’s Office aks that anyone with information regarding the suspect or the crime contact their office at (209) 533-5815.

Drunk man hits stop sign, flees scene

A Copperopolis man was arrested on suspicion of DUI and hit and run after crashing into a stop sign near Shaws Flat Road, fleeing the scene, and being in possession of a leather sap.

At about 9:15 p.m., a group of residents near Shaws Flat Road and Orchard Avenue in Sonora notified the Sonora Police Department that a man in a vehicle had crashed into a stop sign and fled the area at a high speed.

Officers followed a trail of fluid from the accident site to Saratoga Road and Uncle Toms Road and identified two men in or around the vehicle, Acting Police Chief Turu VanderWiel said.

One man was identified as the driver and found to be twice the legal limit, he said.

Inside the vehicle, a leather sap, or a leather strap with a weighted end of metal or sand and used as a weapon, was found inside.

John Stephen Cary, 47, of Copperopolis, was booked on suspicion of possession of a sap, and misdemeanor charges driving under the influence and hit and run.

Cary was released the next day from the Tuolumne County Jail.

Contact Giuseppe Ricapito at (209) 588-4526 or gricapito@uniondemocrat.com . Follow him on Twitter @gsepinsonora.

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