The Sparks Police Department is investigating a new series of residential burglaries occurring citywide over the last 24 hours. Witnesses have seen 2 Hispanic males described as young adults entering the side or back yard areas of homes and pulling off screens in an attempt to enter the residences. Sparks Police officers have developed some information in these cases and are following up on those leads. Anyone with information is asked to call the Sparks Police Department at (775) 353-2231 or Secret Witness at (775) 322-4900. The Sparks Police Department would like to remind citizens to lock ALL doors and windows to their homes, preferably securing windows with a bar or dowel type device. Also PLEASE LOCK YOUR VEHICLES when parked and remove any items that could be valuable including loose change and charging cords for phones. Our most common vehicle burglary involves unlocked vehicles with items of value left in plain view. Thank you.
On Thursday, December 4, 2014, the members of the Sparks Police Department and the Sparks Police Protective Association will be presenting a check for $2005.00 to the Reno office of the American Cancer Society. The presentation will be for officers participating in the No-Shave November event and making contributions to the American Cancer Society. The presentation will be at the Sparks Police Department at 9:00 a.m. in the Training Room.
For the last several weeks, Detectives from the Sparks Police Department Crime Suppression Unit and the Reno Police Department Crime Suppression Team have been working a joint operation investigating the recent series of burglaries in the Reno/Sparks area. There have been over 100 residential and vehicle burglaries between the 2 jurisdictions. On 11/26/14 and 11/27/14, Detectives arrested several subjects associated with these various burglaries. Detectives also recovered several items of evidence from area burglaries. More arrests are anticipated as this investigation continues. It is believed that several citizens may have unknowingly purchased or traded items stolen during local burglaries from craigslist postings and other web based sites. Anyone who may have had contact with any of these individuals is asked to contact the Reno Police Department Crime Suppression Team at (775) 334-2115 or the Sparks Police Department Crime Suppression Unit at (775) 353-2450.
The following individuals were arrested:
Heller, Preston a.k.a. Ellison, Preston DOB 8/4/93 Burglary X 5 counts, Conspiracy to commit Burglary
Donahue, Robert DOB 12/23/90 Ex-Felon in Possession of a Firearm X 2 Counts, Burglary cases pending
Patterson, Jaysen DOB 7/7/92, Burglary (multiple counts) Conspiracy to commit Burglary, Arson
Edwards, Francis DOB 7/28/1988, Burglary, Possession of Stolen Property
The Sparks Chief of Police will be answering questions for the media today at the Sparks Police Department at 12:30pm, in regards to yesterday's incident in the Eagle Canyon area. Any questions please call me at 354-7267.
********* UPDATE **************
The subject in this incident has been identified as Robert Brunsvold. Brunsvold is a 10- year deputy sheriff with the Washoe County Sheriff's Department. He is currently assigned to the Patrol Division.
For further contact Lieutenant Chad Hawkins at 354-7267.
On November 23, 2014 at approximately 0410 hours officers were dispatched to 3700 block of Big Dipper Court on a report of a man who was trying to kill himself with a firearm. While en route to the call officers were advised that subject was now driving a white Jeep Wrangler in the area of Eagle Canyon. An officer was able to speak to a family member who stated the subject would kill himself if he saw police lights. There was also information that the subject was intoxicated.
Based on the circumstances of the case SPD contacted the subjects cell phone carrier. Based on the information gathered, officers believed the subject was in fact in the area of Eagle Canyon.
Sparks P.D. SWAT was activated as the exact location of the subject was unknown and it was feared an armed encounter could occur with him. Officers arrived in the area with an armored car to assist in protecting the responding officers and observed the subjects jeep on the side of the road below Eagle Canyon Drive. The subject saw officers and fled in his vehicle into the desert south and west of Eagle Canyon Drive. For safety reasons the officer did not pursue him.
A police negotiator made phone contact with the subject and the subject asked the negotiator if he knew what a rifle sounded like. The negotiator then heard what sounded like a firearm being fired. The subject made statements that by 0500 he would kill himself.
There were several family members attempting to talk with the subject and officers received information that he claimed to have thousands of rounds of ammunition, night vision and that he had already shot 10 rounds. Due to this, only officers who were in the armored car were searching for him. Sparks P.D. had to request the assistance of the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office and Reno Police Department for the use of their armored vehicles to protect officers and the public. A large perimeter was set up due to the threat the subject presented.
As the morning went on an officer spoke with the subject. The subject claimed to have multiple rifles with him. The subject also asked this officer if he knew what a rifle sounded like and fired rounds. The officer asked the subject to surrender but he refused.
The Washoe County Aviation Unit was called to the scene and located the subject and his vehicle in the desert south and west of Eagle Canyon Drive. He was driving his vehicle all around the area. During the time the Aviation Unit monitored the subject, he was observed with two rifles and at one point had a rifle pointed out of a window and down the canyon.
The subject continued talking with family members and SPD negotiators, all whom were trying to get him to surrender peacefully. The subject threatened to shoot at the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office helicopter if they did not stop flying around him. While negotiators were talking with the subject, they could hear shots being fired. SPD SWAT officers could also hear shots being fired in what was reported as an automatic weapon.
As negotiations went on the subject continued to drive around in the hills and eventually got his vehicle stuck on a rock. Officers in the area continued to hear gunfire from where he was at and the Aviation Unit confirmed the subject had shot holes in the windshield of his vehicle. The subject continued to get in and out of his vehicle possessing multiple rifles.
Negotiations continued and at approximately 10:23am the subject told negotiators he wanted to surrender. He then began walking from his vehicle leaving his weapons behind.
At 10:42am, approximately 6 ½ hours after the initial call, the subject was taken into custody.
The subject was arrested and chose not to speak with officers regarding what had occurred. He was charged with Obstructing with a Firearm and Possession of Firearm while Intoxicated. He was also placed on Legal Hold for suicide related issues.
On Monday, November 18, 2014, at approximately 23:08 hours, a Sparks Police Department officer was involved in a police related shooting. It is unknown at this time whether or not the suspect was struck by the officer’s round. The Regional Officer Involved Shooting Protocol was enacted based on the overall circumstances and the potential of a subject being struck by the officers round. The Washoe County Sheriff’s Office will be the lead investigative agency. Please direct all inquiries to the Washoe County Sheriff's Office. A press release will be forthcoming by the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office.
On 11/17/14 the Sparks Police Department received a call regarding a traffic crash in the parking lot of 259 S. McCarran Blvd. According to a witness, a motorcycle had crashed into a brick wall. Remsa medics arrived first and located the crash scene along with the driver. According to medics, it was clear the driver, whose identity is not being released, had succumbed to the injuries he sustained during the crash. Initial investigation showed the driver to be to only occupant of the motorcycle.
At this time, the investigation is ongoing. The Sparks Police Department would like to speak to anyone having any knowledge regarding this crash. Please contact the Sparks Police Traffic Division at 353-2432.
On 11/15/14 @ approximately 0321 hours, Sparks Dispatch received a call advising of an injury accident in the area of Sparks High School but with no exact location. Moments later, a witness called advising the vehicle involved in the accident was parked in the parking lot of an apartment complex located at 1100 15th St.
When officers arrived on scene, they located the vehicle with the driver, Sergio Ponce-Garcia, still in the vehicle along with one male passenger who was injured. Fire and Medics were called to the scene.
The passenger, a 20 year old Sparks resident whose name is not being released, was transported to Renown Medical Center by Remsa with life-threatening injuries. He later succumbed to those injures at the hospital.
The driver identified as Ponce-Garcia, also a Sparks resident, was cooperative with the investigation and subsequently arrested for Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol causing death.
The investigation showed the location of the crash to be in the 900 block of 12th St., a short distance away from where the vehicle was located.
The investigation is on-going and the Sparks Police Department would like anyone having any knowledge of the accident to contact Detectives at 775-353-2231.
On November 12, 2014 at 7:52 p.m.. Sparks Police responded to a report of a rollover on Vista Blvd. south of Baring Blvd.
When officers arrived they found a white Jeep Cherokee and a dark GMC truck had collided. The GMC had rolled onto its side. Due to the location of the vehicles, southbound traffic on Vista was stopped at Baring Blvd. for about an hour.
The investigation showed that the Jeep was southbound on Vista Blvd. The truck was northbound on Vista, and made a left turn or u-turn across the southbound lanes of Vista. The Jeep then struck the truck in the side, causing it to roll over.
The driver of the truck is identified as John Nuncio, 46, of California. Nuncio was treated for minor injuries at a local hospital. He was also issued a citation for failure to yield right-of-way. The driver of the white Jeep was not injured.
On November 12, 2014 at about 7 p.m... a citizen called Sparks Police to report suspicious activity on the third floor and fourth floors of the Nugget parking garage.
The citizen had seen the suspect checking the doors of several vehicles parked in the garage. The suspect is identified as Ashton Spohn, a 20 year old male with no fixed address.Spohn was associated to a vehicle that was described as a white Honda, and the citizen was able to give police the license plate of the vehicle. The vehicle had been reported stolen earlier in the day from an apartment complex at 800 Nichols Blvd. in Sparks.
As officers came into the area, the subject tried to drive away. Spohn drove down to the third floor, where he abandoned the car. He ran down to the second level of the garage where, in an attempt to elude officers, he jumped off the second floor ledge to the ground below. Officers were near where he landed and he was taken into custody. Spohn did not sustain injuries.
Further investigation has shown that there were multiple vehicles that Spohn either broke into or tried to break into. Son was charged with possession of a stolen motor vehicle, vehicle burglary, six counts of attempted vehicle burglary, obstructing an officer, and possession of marijuana. His bail is listed at $96,000.
At 8:30am, Sparks Police were notified by a family member that there was concern for an adult male living in the 3600 Block of Keogh Drive that was mentally unstable and armed with a rifle. The family member said the subject was suffering from paranoia over the last few days, and had been constantly armed in the house over the last two days. They contacted police because they feared for the safety of citizens who lived in the area, and for police should they have to respond to the residence. Sparks Police with the assistance of Reno Police and mental health workers responded to the area of the residence, and negotiated with him over the phone, and he agreed to come out of the house and speak with us. The male was found to be armed with a AR-15 Assault Rifle, which was recovered by police. The subject has been transported to a local hospital for an evaluation. The lockdown on the elementary school in the area was lifted immediately following the conclusion of this incident.
Release by Sgt. Greta Woyciehowsky,
We are currently working an incident in the area of 4th and Milroy in Sparks. There are no current details to release, however the information we do have indicates there is no one in immediate danger. Please do not broadcast any information to the public at this time until the situation is resolved. At the conclusion of this incident, there will be a Department representative available to anwer any questions. Thank you for your cooperation.