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Officials say known gang member arrested, more than one year after escaping a federal facility

FRESNO, Calif. - A neighborhood where front yards are filled with children's toys.

"It's a good place to play, and quiet; most of the time it's like this," neighbor Axel Morales said. 

Most of the time, except for Thursday afternoon, when officials say 36-year-old Samuel Delacruz made a run for it.

"Next thing you know, he's sprinting down the canal bank, the detective's chasing behind him."

Tony Botti is with the Fresno County Sheriff's Office. He says, a Multi-Agency Gang Enforcement Consortium detective initially stopped Delacruz here, at Blackstone and Fedora, for a traffic violation.

But Botti says, Delacruz, didn't stop.

"He knew that he had law enforcement looking for him, and he was going to do everything he could to try and get away," Botti said.

During the chase, Botti says the detective saw Delacruz toss something.

"Low and behold, it was a loaded gun, 18 rounds in this magazine."

Neighbors telling us they saw detectives searching this yard, right next to areas where children play.

"Obviously thankful we were able to recover that gun before some curious kid got their hands on it," Botti said.

Neighbors here, thankful, too.

"It could've been a nicer neighborhood that it happened in as well," neighbor Matthew Finnel said. "I mean, you just got to keep an eye on your own kids, because you never know."

Officials say they are contacting the U.S. Marshals to make sure Delacruz gets back to the facility he escaped from.

According to the Fresno County Jail's website, Delacruz is being held on more than $100,000 bail and has a Federal Marshal Detainer hold. 

Reporting in Fresno, Megan Rupe. 


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