Using a dog and a drone, Santa Rosa police catch suspect hiding in a tree

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With help from a dog and a drone, Santa Rose police on Thursday arrested a man, who eluded them for about an hour by climbing a tree, for an alleged kidnapping attempt and domestic violence.

Police received a call at 4:43 a.m. that 21-year-old Roberto Carlos Perez-Hildebrand, of Santa Rosa, had punched a woman in the face at a residence near Lamberson Court and Cynthia Lane. He then picked up the victim, who was kicking and screaming, and carried her out of the house, police said.

“He moved her from the property and was carrying her down the street,” Sgt. Jeneane Kucker said. The victim was able to break free and return to the residence, where she spoke with officers.

Perez-Hildebrand fled, discarding his backpack, which was found by an officer in a nearby driveway, Kucker said. The backpack contained a replica firearm.

Officers set up a perimeter around Lamberson Court, a cul-de-sac, then waited for a canine unit and the sergeant in charge of the department’s drone program.

Once aloft, the drone “assisted the officers in understanding the layout,” Kucker said.

Officers noticed that the branches of a tall tree were moving, even though there was no wind. The suspect was then spotted, 20 feet up the tree.

Perez-Hildebrand complied with orders to come down. He was taken into custody and booked into Sonoma County Jail on suspicion of kidnapping, domestic violence with injury, false imprisonment, resisting arrest and violation of his probation.

You can reach Staff Writer Austin Murphy at 707-521-5214 or

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