Press Releases

2018

September 7, 2018- Two Men Convicted of 2015 Double Homicide

On Wednesday, September 5, a Merced County jury found Norteno criminal street gang members Jose Hernandez and David Zamora, both 23, guilty of two counts of murder for the April 2015 shooting that killed 36-year-old Salvador Medina and 18-year-old Jose Zamora, announced the Merced County District Attorney’s office. Read more about the conviction.



July 26, 2018- Serratto Named CDAA Prosecutor of the Year


Matthew Serratto, a supervising deputy district attorney in the Merced County District Attorney’s office, has been named 2018 Prosecutor of the Year (Small and Medium Size Counties) by the California District Attorneys Association Board of Directors.  He will be honored during the Awards Banquet at the CDAA Summer Conference on Thursday, August 2, in Anaheim, District Attorney Larry D. Morse II announced today. Read more about Serratto being named Prosecutor of the Year.
 


July 13, 2018- Man Faces 25 Years to Life for Shooting two Woman in 2016


A 28-year-old Merced man was convicted of two counts of assault with a firearm, once count of possession of a firearm by a felon, and one count of possession of ammunition by a felon, by a Merced County jury on Wednesday afternoon, in connection to a 2016 shooting that left two women with serious injuries, the Merced County District Attorney's office announced. Read more about the conviction. 

June 15, 2018- Misdemeanor Charges in Hookah Lounge Melee

Misdemeanor charges of battery on a peace officer were filed today against three men in connection with a July 8th, 2017 disturbance at the Hookah Lounge in downtown Merced, District Attorney Larry D. Morse II announced today. Read more on the charges filed. 



May 15, 2018- Man Convicted of Attempted Murder of Two-Year-Old Daughter

Gerardo Ruiz-Lopez, 42, of Merced, was convicted of attempted murder and felony child abuse, by a Merced County jury on Wednesday afternoon, after he attempted to kill his two-year-old daughter in 2016, Merced County District Attorney Larry D. Morse II announced. Read more about the conviction.



May 14, 2018- Thirteen Arrested in Auto Insurance Fraud Ring

Thirteen people were arrested Friday following a lengthy investigation by the Merced County District Attorney's office into an automobile insurance fraud ring involving 10 different insurance companies that paid out more than $430,000 in bogus claims, District Attorney Larry D. Morse II announced. Read more on the auto fraud scheme.



May 10, 2018-  Merced County "Much Safer" One Year After Operation "Scrapbook"

One year after a gang sweep he termed “the most successful in Merced County history,” District Attorney Larry D. Morse II said today that “Merced County remains much safer as a result of Operation Scrapbook. Read more about Operation Scrapbook.

May 7, 2018- DA Asks Gray and Cannella to Urge Governor to fill West side Judgeships

Merced County District Attorney Larry D. Morse II today asked state Senator Anthony Cannella and state Assembly member Adam Gray to urge Governor Jerry Brown to fill two judicial vacancies and fund a third judgeship "that will finally allow jury trials and other expanded court services that were promised for the West side of our county." Read more about the Judgeships.


May 3, 2018- Arrests Made in the UC Oriental Market Fire in Downtown Merced

At 7:00 a.m. this morning, detectives from the Merced Police Department arrested the owners of the UC Oriental Market, 44-year-old Mai Moua and her husband 49-year-old Zang Her, in connection to the December 18, 2016 fire that left the building located at 630 W. Main in Merced completely destroyed, announced District Attorney Larry D. Morse II. Read more on the arrests.



April 25, 2018- Board Approves DA's Request for $5K for Statewide Diversity Project

The Merced County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday approved a request from District Attorney Larry D. Morse II to contribute $5,000 to help fund statewide outreach efforts for racial diversity within California district attorney offices.  Read more about the diversity project.
 


April 18, 2018- Merced DA Office Moves into Renovated Building in Los Banos

After about ten of years of working from a portable building, the Merced County District Attorney’s employees who work in Los Banos recently moved into a remodeled section of the old Merced County courthouse building located at 545 W. I Street, announced District Attorney Larry D. Morse II. Read more about the new office.



April 11, 2018- Repeat Car Thief Arrested for Third Time in Five Months

For the third time in the past five months, the District Attorney's office filed felony charges for vehicle theft related crimes against Remijio Ray Andrada, 24, of Atwater, after he was found accessing a vehicle in Atwater that was reported stolen... Read more about the charges against Andrada.


  
March 30, 2018- 18 People Cited for Illegal Contracting in Merced Undercover Sting Operation

Merced County District Attorney Investigators and the Contractors State License Board held an undercover operation last week in Merced that resulted in 18 misdemeanor citations to people engaging in contracting work without a contractor’s license, false advertising, and failing to carry worker’s compensation insurance... Read more about the CSLB sting.

March 27, 2018- Merced County District Attorney's Office Celebrates Victims' Rights Week


Los Banos Chief of Police Gary Brizzee will be the featured speaker at the Merced County District Attorney’s annual Victims’ Rights Week ceremony held at noon on Tuesday, April 10, at the Courthouse Park announced DA Larry D. Morse II... Read more about the Victims' Rights Ceremony.

March 22, 2018- Man Sentenced to 15 Years to Life for Second Degree Murder


Victor Santos Garcia, 32, of Merced, was sentenced to 15 years to life by Merced County Judge Carol Ash on Friday, March 16, 2018 for second degree murder and driving while intoxicated with gross negligence, for a 2016 crash that killed 67-year-old Elena Maciel Garcia (no relation) of Newman, announced the Merced County District Attorney's office...Read more on Garcia's sentencing. 



March 19, 2018- Man Faces Life Without Parole for 2016 Delhi Murder and Attempted Murder 

A 27-year-old gang member was convicted of first degree murder and attempted murder by a Merced County jury on March 9 in connection with a 2016 shooting in Delhi, the Merced County District Attorney’s office announced. Read more about Gonzalez's conviction.
 


March 1, 2018- District Attorney Larry Morse II Visits Capitol in Support of California Youth 

Merced County District Attorney Larry D. Morse II traveled to Sacramento this week to make an unusual request of elected officials: invest in kids today to prevent crime tomorrow. Citing research and data, Morse made a strong case for increased investments in evidence-based solutions such as after-school programs, dropout prevention, and home visiting programs to keep communities safe and secure. Read more about Fight Crime: Invest in Kids


  

February 16, 2018- New Technology to Fight AG Crime to be Unveiled by Sheriff and District Attorney


SmartWater, a revolutionary new technology to assist law enforcement in combating agricultural theft, will be unveiled for members of the Merced County Farm Bureau during a presentation at 1 p.m., Monday, February 26th at the Merced County Fairgrounds Pavilion building, Merced County District Attorney Larry D. Morse II and Merced County Sheriff Vern Warnke announced today. Read more about SmartWater. 


 

February 16, 2018- Matthew Serratto Appointed New Supervising Deputy District Attorney


Matthew Serratto has been promoted to the Supervising Deputy District Attorney position at the Merced County District Attorney's Office, District Attorney Larry D. Morse II announced last week... Read more about Matt's promotion.


 

 
2017

November 14, 2017- Eight Parents Arrested for Failing to Send Their Kids to School


Eight parents were arrested last week and charged with failing to send their children to school, in the second countywide truancy sweep coordinated by the Merced County District Attorney's Office and the Merced County Office of Education, announced Merced County District Attorney Larry D. Morse II...Read more on the SARB Sweep

November 3, 2017- Two Men Will Spend the Rest of Their Lives in Prison for a 2014 Hilmar Murder

William White and Victor Hernandez will spend the rest of their lives in prison after being sentenced yesterday for their roles in the death of Orlando Yepez, announced Deputy District Attorney Walter Wall, who prosecuted the case... Read more about the sentencing



October 13, 2017- Repeat Fraudster in Merced County Denied Parole                                           

A Merced man, sentenced to 11 years in prison earlier this year for multiple counts of grand theft and diversion of construction funds in amounts exceeding $100,000, but already eligible for parole following the 2016 passage of Proposition 57, will have to remain in prison following a denial by the state Board of Parole last month, the Merced County District Attorney’s office announced... Read more about Munoz's Parole Denial.

September 18, 2017- Bill Olson Appointed New Chief Investigator for Merced DA Office


Bill Olson has been promoted to the Chief Investigator position with the Merced County District Attorney's Bureau of Investigations, announced District Attorney Larry D. Morse II... Read more about Bill's promotion.

September 7, 2017- District Attorney Announces Conviction Review Unit


District Attorney Larry D. Morse II announced today that he has designated a Conviction Review Unit to review post-conviction claims of actual innocence and has formalized a process to review such claims... Read more about the Conviction Review Unit. 



September 5, 2017- Ten Parents Arrested for Failing to Send Their Kids to School

Ten parents were arrested last week and charged with failing to send their kids to school as part of a countywide truancy sweep coordinated by the Merced County District Attorney's office and the Merced County Office of Education... Read more on the SARB Sweep


 
August 22, 2017- Three Men Indicted on Murder Charge by a Merced County Grand Jury

A Merced County Grand Jury indicted three validated gang members on Friday morning for the June 11 savage jail house murder of Aaron Bonilla, who was beaten and stomped to death while in custody for auto theft... Read more about Aaron Bonilla's murder.



August 9, 2017- Two Men Convicted of First Degree Murder

William White, 38, of Antioch, and Victor Hernandez, 27, of Modesto, were both convicted of first degree murder and two counts of home invasion robbery, with all gun enhancements found to be true, on Tuesday by a Merced County jury... Read more about White and Hernandez' convictions.



August 1, 2017- Felony and Misdemeanor Charges Filed in 2016 Fatal Bus Crash Near Livingston

The Merced County District Attorney's office filed four felony counts of vehicular manslaughter and five misdemeanor vehicle code violations against Mario David Vasquez of Los Angeles on Monday in connection with an early morning bus crash on August 2nd of 2016 outside of Livingston... Read more about the bus crash



August 1, 2017- New Artist is Featured in Merced County District Attorney's Lobby

Angela Holmes is the latest artist displaying her paintings in the Merced County District Attorney's office lobby. Her paintings, featuring different jungle animals and abstract pieces will be on display through December... Read more about Angela Homes.


June 5, 2017- Man Convicted of Two Separate Homicides


Dionicio Gutierrez-Salazar, 38, of Atwater, was found guilty by a Merced County jury of two counts of first-degree murder with special circumstances on Friday June 2, announced District Attorney Larry D. Morse II...Read more about Gutierrez-Salazar's conviction.


May 17, 2017- New Attorney Sworn in at Merced District Attorney's Office


Jeremy Toscano, 29, a native of Los Banos, was sworn in as a new attorney yesterday by District Attorney Larry D. Morse II at the Merced County District Attorney’s Office... Read more on Jeremy's Swearing in.

May 10, 2017- "Massive" Sweep in Merced County Nets More Than 50 Sureno Gang Members


Nearly 500 federal, state and local law enforcement personnel hit the streets at dawn in Merced County on Wednesday executing search warrants and completing arrests of the more than 50 Sureno criminal street gang members targeted as part of a massive multi-agency gang interdiction effort dubbed “Operation Scrapbook"... Read more about Operation Scrapbook.

April 18, 2017- Charges Filed in Connection with Merced Homicide


The Merced County District Attorney’s Office filed murder charges today against 50-year-old William Li of San Francisco, in connection with the murder of 30-year-old Lijun Wang, whose body was found in a dumpster in February, announced Merced County District Attorney Larry Morse II... Read more about Charges Filed.

April 7, 2017- Man Arrested on $600,000 Warrant Issued by Merced County


Edward Mitchell Jr., 47, was arrested on Wednesday April 5, 2017 at his residence in Eureka, as a result of a $600,000 warrant issued out of Merced County for 14 felony counts of obtaining money, labor or property by false pretenses and 14 felony counts of diversion of construction funds... Read more about Mitchell's Arrest.


March 27, 2017- Merced County District Attorney's Office Celebrates Victims' Rights Week


Marylene Riley, who lost both of her sons to violence in Merced County, will be the featured speaker at the Merced County District Attorney's annual Victims' Rights Week ceremony held at noon on Thursday, April 6, at the Courthouse Park... Read more about Victims' Rights Week.


March 22, 2017- Anna Hazel Named First Woman Supervising Investigator


Anna Hazel has been promoted to the Supervising Investigator position with the Merced County District Attorney’s Bureau of Investigations... Read more about Anna Hazel's Promotion.

February 27, 2017- Repeat Scammer Gets Sentenced to 11 Years in Prison


The Honorable Jeanne Schechter, Commissioner of the Merced Superior Court sentenced Jesse Munoz of Merced to 11 years in the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation... Read more about Scammer Sentencing.

February 10, 2017- Court Issues Final Judgment and Injunction Against the Siesta Motel


Merced County Superior Court Judge Brian McCabe issued a Permanent Injunction this week against the Siesta Motel, its owners and operators and ordered that they abate and illegal activities occurring on the premises... Read more about the Injunction on the Siesta Motel.

February 8, 2017- A Credit Scam Has Made Its Way to the Central Valley


Following the recent arrest of two women who tried to use bogus paystubs to gain “pre-approval” for financing at a car dealership, the Merced County District Attorney’s Office is advising local businesses to be extra vigilant in processing credit applications... Read more about the Credit Scam.

February 1, 2017- Dangerous Cockroach Powder Sold at Los Banos Flea Market


An illegal cockroach powder that has been sold recently at the Merced Spring Flea Market is not safe for humans or animals and should not be used in the home, District Attorney Larry Morse II announced today... Read more about the Dangerous Cockroach Powder.


January 10, 2017- District Attorney Announces Victim Services Grant


The Merced County District Attorney's Office has been selected to receive $373,000 through the federal Victims of Crime Act... Read more about Victim Services Grant.

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