Despite wind, rain and floods that hampered initial response efforts, law enforcement officials were able to apprehend a man suspected of committing a violent robbery Sunday night in Pearsonville.
According to the Inyo County Sheriff’s Office, Johnny Pulido-Gonzalez, 24, of Los Angeles, was arrested Tuesday, July 23 in the Kennedy Meadows area for an alleged car-jacking and attempted murder. He later confessed to Sunday night’s robbery during which he stabbed a convenience store clerk.
Local authorities received a report of an armed robbery and stabbing at the Pearsonville Shell gas station at about 10:20 p.m. Sunday. However, due to flooding on U.S. 395 near Dunmovin, sheriff’s deputies were unable to respond and requested assistance from the Kern County Sheriff’s Office and California Highway Patrol.
Before Inyo deputies were able to respond to the scene, the victim, a clerk at the gas station, was transported to the Ridgecrest hospital, then flown to Bakersfield for emergency treatment.
“The victim … was severely attacked; injuries included facial lacerations, punctured lung and broken rib,” Sheriff’s Public Information Officer Carma Roper said. “The victim was able to give a partial description of the subject on Sunday evening. The description, coupled with the image that sheriff’s investigators were able to retrieve from surveillance video, were enough information for a ‘be-on-the-look-out’ to be issued to local and allied agencies.”
Roper added that the assault “was an extremely vicious attack. The victim is lucky to be alive.”
The name of the victim is being withheld at this time to protect the individual’s privacy.
Investigators got a break in the case at about 4 p.m. Tuesday, July 23, when the Tulare County Sheriff’s Office requested assistance on a report of a possible carjacking and stabbing near Kennedy Meadows.
Kennedy Meadows is technically in Tulare County, but again, heavy rains, mudslides and flooding prevented Tulare deputies from accessing the scene.
Inyo County deputies responded and, according to Roper, “were able to determine that the general description of the subject matched the description of the subject from the recent stabbing in Pearsonville.”
The suspect, Pulido-Gonzalez, was apprehended at the scene without incident and booked at the Tulare County Jail on attempted murder charges.
“On Wednesday, July 24, investigators from Inyo County Sheriff’s Office drove to Visalia to interview Pulido-Gonzalez where he admitted he was the suspect in the armed robbery and attempted murder in Pearsonville,” Roper said.
Currently Pulido-Gonzalez is being held in Tulare County. Roper said the Inyo County Sheriff’s Office will be requesting a warrant from the Inyo County District Attorney for separate charges of armed robbery and attempted murder.