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SWAT raid leads to arrest of Santa Rosa gang suspect

SWAT teams surrounded a rural compound in south Santa Rosa early Thursday morning to apprehend a suspected gang member who fled arrest last weekend, Santa Rosa police said.

Twelve people were staying on the Ward Road property -- which included a main residence, several smaller buildings and trailers, Santa Rosa Police Sgt. Ray Navarro said.

The target, Karl Gray, 29, was arrested on a variety of charges, including parole violation and unlawful possession of a gun, Navarro said.

Police tracked him down after an incident last Saturday in which a patrol officer saw a motorist run a red light at Dowd Drive and Hearn Avenue around 1:10 a.m. and gave chase. The pursuit ended when the suspect's pickup crashed into a utility pole on Dutton Avenue near Highway 12.

Two men inside bailed out and fled, though one, Jason Pope, 23, was soon arrested, Navarro said. Drugs and at least one gun were found in the truck, Navarro said.

The second man, who was driving the truck, was later identified as Gray, Navarro said. Both men lived on the same Ward Road property, he said.

Gang investigators converged on the compound around 7 a.m. Thursday with backup from both police and county Sheriff's Office SWAT teams, several police dogs and the sheriff's helicopter to serve a warrant on Gray. Twelve people were detained at the property, though all but Gray were released.

Both Gray and Pope have now been arrested and booked on suspicion of evasion, possession of drugs for sale, possession of a loaded firearm, unlawful possession of ammunition, possession of a concealed weapon and two gang enhancements in connection with the pursuit.

Gray is being held without bail because of the parole violation.

Pope remains in the Sonoma County Jail, with bail of $225,000, jail personnel said.


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