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Ripon officers conduct warrant sweep Saturday no one home
Ripon patrolman Ghailan Chahouati and Sgt. Steve Merchant ended their Saturday warrant sweep by pulling over a Lathrop man at 2 p.m. for talking on his cell phone and out of date registration. Nathaniel S. Urteaga, 26, was driving on a suspended license because of a DUI conviction, police said. They noted there was no insurance on the Chevrolet Cavalier that was reportedly owned by a friend. The car was towed and impounded for 30 days. - photo by GLENN KAHL

RIPON — A half dozen Ripon police officers with arrest warrants in hand knocked on more than 20 front doors Saturday, but found that most of those dodging the law weren’t home.  

Sgt. Steve Merchant said the warrants were dated and many of those they were seeking had moved out of the community – addresses no longer valid.

Another reason for finding few wanted citizens: “When we get warrants, we usually scoop them up right away,” Merchant said.

A last stop for officers Stephen Meece and Ghailan Chahouati was on Walnut Avenue where family members phoned two individuals that officers were looking for at the apartment.  They were reportedly shopping at a local market next to the police department and related that they would wait for officers – ready to turn themselves in to police.

A Lathrop man talking on his cell phone caught the attention of officers who quickly noticed an outdated registration.  The motorist told officers he had two DUIs on his record and that his current suspension was a problem in communication.  He said that he had completed a required DUI class feeling that its completion must not have been forwarded to the Department of Motor Vehicles.

He was cited and the car of a friend he was driving was impounded for 30 days.