Detective nearly ambushed by suspects during attempted homicide investigation, Merced Police say


MERCED, Calif. (KSEE/KGPE) — A detective with the Merced Police Department was nearly ambushed by suspects during an attempted homicide investigation early Saturday morning, according to authorities.

Shortly, before 12:30 a.m. officers responded to 314 W. 19th Street for a stabbing. When officers arrived, they located a 28-year-old man suffering from a stab wound to his chest.

Police say the victim was transported to a Modesto area hospital where he is in serious, but stable condition.

While searching the area of the 1200 block of Canal Street, detectives were nearly ambushed by two suspects identified as Jose Ibarra and Juan Velasco.

When the detective spotted the approaching gunmen, he identified himself as a police officer and the suspects attempted to flee. Officers were able to detain Ibarra and Velasco and recovered the handguns.

Police say Ibarra and Velasco had mistaken the detective’s car for a rival gang member’s car and had approached them armed with handguns.

Ibarra and Velasco were booked into the Merced County Jail for attempted murder, being felons in possession of firearms, felons in possession of ammunition, and the criminal street gang enhancement, according to police.

Authorities believe the stabbing attack is gang-related.

Merced Police are asking anyone with any additional information to contact Detective Barajas at (209) 388-7828.

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