Armed men posed as law enforcement officers during an early Sunday morning heist of marijuana and other valuables at a remote property in northeastern Mendocino County, sheriff’s officials reported Monday.
One of the residents of the remote Covelo property phoned for help at 2:33 a.m., saying five to eight men were at his Highway 162 property claiming to be police. He fled, but another person at the property told deputies the men wore ski masks and questioned him at gunpoint before forcing him into a vehicle and threatening to shoot him if he didn’t help find valuables.
He was robbed of personal belongings and forced to help them steal marijuana plants, sheriff’s officials said.
Deputies at the scene located a truck matching the description of one of the vehicles allegedly involved but the suspects drove off before fleeing on foot.
Three suspects were arrested about 11 a.m. on suspicion of armed robbery, kidnap for ransom and criminal conspiracy: Daniel Hernandez Sanchez, 24, a transient, Matthew Sturges, 31, of Willits, and Alejandro Nunez, 24, of Willits.
Anyone with information about the incident is asked to contact the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office.
You can reach Staff Writer Glenda Anderson at 707-462-6473 or firstname.lastname@example.org. On Twitter @MendoReporter.
Read all of the PD's fire coverage here