A trap door in an apartment living room yielded a stash of 83.8 grams of methamphetamine, and a .357 magnum revolver in the 300 block of Moffat Boulevard early Wednesday evening as part of the Operation Safe Holidays probation search effort.
Manteca resident Lee Michael Lopez, 39, was charged with seven felonies and transported to San Joaquin County Jail in French Camp where he is being held in lieu of $335,375 bail. He is scheduled to appear in the Manteca Branch of the San Joaquin County Superior Court today at 1:25 p.m.
Manteca Police Sgt. Jodie Estarziau explained that the MPD Gang Suppression Unit (GSU) had been working with other law enforcement agencies throughout the county in a massive probation check operation from Ripon and Tracy to Lodi involving some 100 officers.
When officers arrived at the Moffat address, they called the occupants out of the residence, Estarziau said. The door had been left open as one of the detectives moved toward the entrance when two pit bulls entered the doorway.
Sgt. Estarziau said one of pit bulls became aggressive and started barking and moved toward the officer. A citizen standing behind the detective refused to move out of his way, preventing him from retreating from the dog. The detective feared for his safety and fired one round from his service weapon in self defense with the round striking the dog that immediately ran from the scene.
Another detective located the animal on Mikesell Avenue more than a block away. Animal control officers responded to the scene and took possession of the dog and transported it to a veterinary hospital for treatment.
Body armor was also located in the apartment, Estarziau said, and a motorcycle that had been stolen out of San Jose in late November was found parked in front of the apartment. The firearm had been reported stolen through Stockton Police Department in October of 2013, she added.
Lopez was charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm, a felon in possession of ammunition, possession of narcotics for sale, being armed while in possession of narcotics for sale, vehicle theft and possession of a firearm – the handgun.