July 28, 2015

Press Conference Update on the Madyson Middleton Investigation



Below is an outline of the information released by the Santa Cruz Police Department today at our 11:00 AM news conference.  The press conference included Mayor Don Lane, Chief Kevin Vogel and District Attorney Jeff Rosell. 

Chief Vogel started by providing a chronological synopsis of the events in this case:

  • 8-year old Madyson Middleton reported missing on Sunday 7/26 at 6:08 p.m. from the Tannery Arts Center, 1030 River Street, where she lived.
  • Madyson was last seen late Sunday afternoon and was captured on video riding her Razor scooter in the Tannery Arts Center complex.
  • SCPD flooded the area with police officers and detectives after receiving the call that Madyson was missing.  SCPD began an extensive and exhaustive search of the area where she was last seen, including the surrounding woodland areas, open spaces and the San Lorenzo River Levee in an effort to locate her.
  • The Sheriff’s Office Search and Rescue Team was called to assist with the search on Sunday evening.  We also requested a specially trained search and rescue K-9 unit from the State Office of Emergency Services to support our efforts.
  • SCPD staff and allied agencies worked through late Sunday night into Monday morning.  Detectives followed up on all leads and continued the search for Madyson in hopes of finding her safe and returning her home.
  • SCPD reached out to the FBI on Sunday evening asking for their assistance.  Within hours, the FBI sent a team of agents and resources to assist with the search for Madyson.  Additional resources were brought in on Monday.
  • On Monday, all available SCPD personnel, FBI personnel and Search and Rescue personnel from Santa Cruz County and adjoining counties continued an extensive search throughout the day hoping to find Madyson and returning her home.    
  • On Monday evening at approximately 7:55 pm, Detectives discovered a body believed to be Madyson Middleton. 

The following new information was provided during the press conference:

Late afternoon on Monday July 27th, Santa Cruz Police Detectives initiated a more thorough and focused canvass of the Tannery Arts Center complex.  The refocusing effort came after police neared the 24 hour mark of Madyson’s disappearance.  The initial phase of the case concentrated on a search for Madyson and an investigation into her disappearance.  As we neared the 24 hour mark, the investigation transitioned into a recovery and forensic effort.  

At approximately 7:55 pm, a Santa Cruz Police detective discovered the body of Madyson Middleton at the bottom of a large dumpster-sized recycle bin on the ground floor of the complex.  The suspect had gone to great lengths to conceal the body.  Madyson’s body was concealed and disguised inside the recycle bin in a way where it was not obvious or readily apparent.  An autopsy is pending to determine the official cause and manner of death.  

A 15-year old male juvenile was immediately arrested and taken into custody.  The suspect was actually standing near the location when Madyson’s body was discovered.  The juvenile suspect resides in the Tannery Arts Complex with his family.   Detectives interviewed the suspect into the early morning hours.  At this point, the suspect is under arrest for the murder of Madyson Middleton. 

Detectives have located evidence that links the suspect to this horrific crime.  That evidence includes Madyson’s belongings, witness statements and video evidence. 

We have determined that Madyson was an acquaintance of the suspect by virtue of both residing at the Tannery Arts Center complex.  Evidence suggests that Madyson was lured to the suspect’s apartment willingly.  Additionally, we have determined that Madyson was murdered inside of the suspect’s apartment and eventually carried downstairs to the recycle bin and concealed within the bin.  Evidence in the case indicates that Madyson was killed prior to the initial call to police on Sunday July 27th at 6:08 pm. 

We have determined the suspect acted alone and not in concert with anyone else.  There is no risk or threat to the community at this point as the suspect is currently in custody at the Santa Cruz County Juvenile Detention Facility.

Chief Kevin Vogel thanked all of our law enforcement partners who assisted and contributed with personnel and other resources for this investigation.  Chief Vogel acknowledged Sheriff Jim Hart and his Search and Rescue Team.  The team tirelessly searched miles of trails, woods, waterways and buildings in hopes of finding Madyson.  Our thanks includes the San Mateo County Sheriff’s Office who also dedicated personnel to the search efforts.

Chief Vogel thanked the FBI and Special Agent in Charge Malcolm Palmore who joined our efforts and made every resource available.  Within hours, the FBI brought approx. 50 Agents and stood up a command center to assist in this investigation. 

Chief Vogel gave special thanks to the American Red Cross who sustained our first responders throughout the investigation and search for Madyson. 

Chief Vogel acknowledged and thanked the community members who came forward and offered assistance and support.  Many of our community members made signs and flyers and posted them throughout the area hoping to find Madyson alive.  Once again, you showed how well our community cares for each other during times of crisis. 

Finally, Chief Vogel addressed the family of Madyson Middleton, offering our sympathy, support and prayers.  It was our sincere hope that we would find Madyson and return her home. 

District Attorney Jeff Rosell is expected to file charges within the next few days. 

July 27, 2015

SCPD asking the public’s help in locating a missing child named Madyson Middleton

The Santa Cruz Police Department is continuing our search and investigation into the disappearance of 8 year old Madyson “Maddy” Middleton. 

The police department was called to the Tannery Arts Center, 1030 River Street at 6:08 PM on Sunday 7/26, reporting that Madyson was missing. It was reported that Madyson had been at her apartment complex riding her white razor scooter, wearing a purple knee high dress with black leggings, black baseball style helmet, with long dark hair pulled to the side in a braid.
Madyson Middleton is 8 years old, Female, White, 4'-0'' tall and 48 lbs.
The following developments occurred overnight.
The Santa Cruz Police Department has been in contact with the FBI and they are providing assistance with our investigation. The police department continued to coordinate search efforts with the Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Office Search and Rescue Team. We utilized specially trained K-9’s from the State Office of Emergency Services. These dogs are scent-specific. The dogs searched the San Lorenzo River levee and main beach areas.

Searchers scoured over all possible areas in the vicinity of where Madyson went missing, as well as the main beach area. We will search these areas again during daylight hours. Today’s search included another full search of the San Lorenzo River waterway and levees, as well as the use of watercraft, aircraft and foot teams.

We are still asking for the public’s help by reporting suspicious activity, calling in possible leads, and keeping alert for sightings of Madyson. We will continue to update as new information comes available. 
 


Please report any possible sightings. They are crucial to assist in locating this missing child as soon as possible. If you have information that can assist in helping safely locate Madyson Middleton, please call 911. Madyson also goes by the nickname Maddy.

July 21, 2015

SCPD NET & SC Co Anti-Crime Team join forces again. They STOPPED $42,000 of drugs from hitting our streets.

On July 10, 2015 at about 10:30 AM, the Santa Cruz Police Neighborhood Enforcement Team stopped a vehicle driven by Gabriel Guzman on HWY 17 in Scotts Valley. During the stop, Mr. Guzman was found to be in possession of 2.2 ounces of heroin, 1 ounce of methamphetamine, and 4 grams of cocaine. Guzman was also in possession of about $16,000 cash.
Gabriel Guzman, 41 years old and a resident of Vacaville, California.

After the discovery of the narcotics Guzman was transporting, a search warrant was served at Guzman’s residence in Vacaville, CA by the Neighborhood Enforcement Team with the assistance of the Santa Cruz County Anti-Crime Team. During this search warrant officers found at the suspect’s residence in Vacaville:
9.1 ounces of cocaine,
6.2 ounces of methamphetamine,
1.4 ounces of marijuana,
0 .6 ounces of heroin.
Three firearms were recovered from the residence, one of which had been reported stolen from Washington. $12,000 cash was also located in the residence.

In all, the drugs seized during the traffic stop plus the house warrant carries a street value of approximately $42,000. The cash seized from the traffic stop and the house warrant totaled $28,000.
Guzman was arrested for (1) 11351HS - possession of cocaine for sale, (2) 11351HS - possession of heroin for sale, (3) 11352(a)HS – transport narcotics, (4) 11352(b)HS – transport narcotics between counties, (6) 11378HS – possession of methamphetamine for sale, 11379(a)HS – transport methamphetamine, (7) 11379(b)HS – transport methamphetamine between counties.

This successful drug arrest is due to the combined logistics of the Santa Cruz Police Neighborhood Enforcement Team and the Santa Cruz County Anti-Crime Team.

This is a continuing effort to keep Santa Cruz a safe place to live, work, and raise a family.

July 20, 2015

Free Gun Locks Available at SCPD

The Santa Cruz Police Department is giving away FREE gun locks to members of the community in an effort to increase safety.  For those that choose to own a firearm, proper storage and safety of that weapon is of paramount importance!
The Santa Cruz Police Department is giving away
FREE child safety gun locks and gun safety brochure.

You can pick up a
FREE gun lock and gun safety brochure at our lobby Monday through Thursday from 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM. We will give you as many as you need.

Gun locks can save lives. It is possible that tragedies could be avoided and accidents might not happen if a gun has a lock on it. If you own a firearm, respect it and secure it when it's not in use.
The gun locks and brochures are provided in collaboration with Project Childsafe. For more information on the safe handling and storage of firearms, visit their Website at:
http://projectchildsafe.org/

In choosing to keep a firearm in your home, you are legally responsible for ensuring that the weapon is stored in a safe manner, and not easily accessible to children or other unauthorized individuals.

The Santa Cruz Police Department supports the efforts of Project ChildSafe and firearm safety education.

July 17, 2015

Chief Vogel Congratulates All in Final Leg of World Special OlympicTorch Run

Chief Vogel and Mayor Don Lane honored and thanked the carriers of the torch as they completed the Law Enforcement Final Leg for the World Special Olympic Games.
This group is comprised of officers and athletes from around the globe, completed their journey at The Boardwalk. Chief Vogel was proud to address this awesome group, who represent Special Olympics of NORCAL.




James Durbin was also in attendance and sang his hit "Santa Cruz" for this dedicated group of officers and athletes.

The World Games are in Los Angeles this month (www.la2015.org). With 7,000 athletes and 3,000 coaches representing 177 countries, along with 30,000 volunteers and anticipated 500,000 spectators, the 2015 Special Olympics will be the single largest sporting event anywhere in the world in 2015 and the single biggest event in Los Angeles since the 1984 Olympic Games.

The Flame of Hope, which was lit in Greece before traveling here, is being carried by 150 police officers from all over the world and 10 Special Olympic Athletes from all over the world on its way to the World Games.
Thank you to all who participated in making this special event possible. SCPD is proud to support this remarkable group of officers and athletes from around the world complete their journey at The Boardwalk. 

July 14, 2015

SCPD Together with Involved Community Stops Crime

Incident #1
Hit & Run Leads to Stolen Loaded Rifle & Credit Cards

On Saturday, 7/11/2015, around 6:00pm, Santa Cruz Police Department responded to the report of a vehicle collision in the area of Delaware St. and Fair St. A red Ford Focus struck the driver side of a white Volvo XC80 and fled the scene.

Although the initial report claimed major injuries occurred, it was determined there were no injured victims at the scene.

While in route, Santa Cruz Police Officers located two of the vehicles described in the collision in the area of California Street at Trescony Street. The investigation showed that the red Ford Focus fled the collision scene.

The driver of the Volvo continued to follow the Ford Focus until both cars stopped in the area of California St and Trescony St. The driver of the red Ford Focus was identified as Gilberto Uribe, 20 years old, a Santa Cruz resident.


 In addition to being the suspect hit and run driver, several witnesses reported that they saw Uribe get out of the car with black backpack and throw it over a nearby fence. Officers on the scene found the backpack with a loaded rifle inside. It was later determined that the rifle was stolen out of Santa Clara County. Mr. Uribe was also found in possession of stolen credit cards from a theft that occurred in Santa Cruz earlier in the day.

Uribe told officers that he fled the collision scene because he believed he was being followed and someone was trying to shoot him.

Mr. Uribe was arrested for several felony charges related to being in possession of a stolen and loaded firearm and violating his probation. His charges also included DUI drugs and hit &run. Uribe also had an outstanding warrant for his arrest. Case#15S-05986

Incident #2
Alert neighbor calls SCPD to stop burglar.

Over the weekend a proactive neighbor called in to report a suspicious person open and enter an unlocked front door of a home in the 100 block of Sycamore Street.

Suspect burglar Isaias Martinez, 26 years old from Santa Cruz came out the apartment a few minutes later carrying jewelry.

The alert neighbor called 9-1-1 and was able to provide a strong detailed description of the suspect.

Responding officers were quickly on the scene and located Mr. Martinez with multiple items of stolen property in his possession.

Isaias Martinez was arrested for residential burglary. Case#15S-05978

Thanks to an alert citizen watching out for their neighborhood.

July 9, 2015

Hit and Run Collision DUI Arrest

On July 9, 2015 at 5:20 AM, Santa Cruz Police Officers responded to a report of a hit and run collision in the area of Park Way and Acacia Way. Witnesses reported a silver Jeep Cherokee colliding with a parked car in the area. Witnesses also reported that the driver was naked as he fled from his car, and into the backyard of a home in the area. The homeowner reported the suspect was attempting to get into the residence via a sliding glass door.
Several officers arrived and were able to safely take the suspect into custody. Officers discovered the suspect sustained significant injuries during the collision. The suspect was transported from the scene to Dominican Hospital where he remains in ICU.
The suspect was identified as Richard Ducati, 51 year old from San Francisco.

Investigating officers believed Mr. Ducati was under the influence of drugs at the time of the collisions and subsequent arrest.

This collision came on the heels of another hit and run collision reported in the city of Santa Cruz at Mission Street and Miramar Drive, and another in the Live Oak area. Mr. Ducati is believed to be involved in these collisions, and possibly others through the area.

Mr. Ducati’s vehicle became disabled in the final collision and was towed from the scene. Photos of the vehicle are attached.
Mr. Ducati will likely be hospitalized for an extended period of time. He will be booked for his pending charges of Driving Under the Influence of Drugs, and Hit and Run when medically cleared. At this time, there is not a photo available for Mr. Ducati. Photos of silver Jeep Cherokee attached.

The Santa Cruz Police Department is actively investigating the facts and circumstances surrounding this incident. Anyone with information relative to this incident is asked to contact the Investigations Unit at (831) 420-5820.