Couple arrested after stealing car and kidnapping owner in Irvine
A couple were arrested Wednesday in Irvine after allegedly stealing a car and kidnapping its owner, officials said Thursday.
Daniel Ramirez, 28, was arrested on suspicion of kidnapping and assaulting a man, while his 27-year-old girlfriend Mallory Arredondo was arrested on an outstanding warrant, the department said Irvine Police Force in a press release.
At around 9 a.m. on Wednesday, officers responded to an apartment community in the Irvine Center Drive and Spectrum area about an investigation into a possible stolen vehicle.
The victim said he had met Ramirez and Arredondo a few days earlier and asked to borrow his car on Wednesday. When he refused, they took his car without permission and did not return for several hours, police said.
Just before 12:30 p.m., an officer saw the victim’s vehicle and attempted a stop. But the driver fled and a short chase took place, according to the department.
The officer halted the pursuit due to the driver’s high speed and “danger to the public,” Irvine police said.
Shortly after, officers found the vehicle unoccupied and parked with the engine running in the underground parking lot of the victim’s apartment building. Officers repeatedly attempted to contact the victim by phone, but there was no response, the department said.
“Due to the suspicious circumstances, the police feared that the victim would be inside his residence and be
possibly in danger, ”the press release states.
Authorities have started evacuating neighboring apartments and have called on Orange County fire officials to provide immediate assistance to anyone who may be injured.
Police used a drone to monitor the area and make announcements. Following such an announcement, the victim left the apartment, the door quickly closing behind him, officials said.
The victim told police that the two suspects were inside and the man was in possession of several guns and was whipped by a pistol.
The couple inside, identified as Ramirez and Arredondo, barricaded the door and refused to exit.
The SWAT team and the department’s crisis negotiations intervened on the spot. After unsuccessful negotiations, several “less lethal projectiles” were used to smash the windows of the apartment, Irvine police said.
Arredondo left the apartment just before 8:45 p.m. and Ramirez surrendered about 10 minutes later. They were both detained at the scene.
A search warrant was then executed in the apartment, where an un-serialized AR-15 assault rifle, two handguns and ammunition were recovered, police said.
All of the firearms were in various stages of disassembly. and detectives said they believed Ramirez dismantled the weapons as officers negotiated his surrender.
Ramirez was arrested and booked into Orange County Jail on suspicion of kidnapping, assault with a deadly weapon, criminal threats and outstanding arrest warrants. Detectives said they would ask the OC district attorney’s office to add gun charges against him.
Arredondo was arrested for her pending warrant and was cited and then released from police
Anyone with information on the case is urged to contact Detective Jason Renshaw at
949-724-7244 or email [email protected]
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