El Centro police and Imperial County Fire Department bomb squad personnel gather around an unknown military-type ordnance that was recovered from a motel room on Wake Avenue in El Centro on Sunday, Feb. 7. The ordnance was found to pose no threat to those in the vicinity. | IV LAW AND FIRE PHOTO
Two El Centro residents were arrested by El Centro police about 11:50 a.m. Sunday, Feb. 7, after allegedly being found in possession of a stolen vehicle, narcotics, a firearm, and a military-type ordnance.
Roberto Avila, 30, and Alexis Flores, 23, were encountered by police as they exited a motel room in the 400 block of Wake Avenue, where police had also located a stolen vehicle, according to an El Centro Police Department press release.
Officers had detained Avila and Flores to determine their potential involvement with the stolen vehicle, a red Pontiac Grand Am previously reported stolen at 9:11 a.m. from the 1600 block of Barbara Worth Drive in El Centro.
While on scene, police were approached by motel staff who reportedly observed a military-type ordnance in the motel room that Avila and Flores had occupied, according to the release.
Officers evacuated the immediate area and contacted the El Centro Fire Department and Imperial County Fire Department’s bomb squad for assistance.
After determining the ordnance did not pose a threat, El Centro police conducted a probation compliance check of Avila’s property and the associated motel room and reportedly discovered the keys to the stolen vehicle, stolen checks, and other miscellaneous items, the department reported.
A search of Flores’ person and property led to the discovery of methamphetamine, while a search of the stolen vehicle revealed an illegally modified shotgun and ammunition, the press release stated.
Flores was cited and released for possession of methamphetamine and a stolen vehicle. Avila was booked into the county jail for being felon in possession of a firearm, possession of stolen checks, and possession of a stolen vehicle.
Officers are actively investigating the origin of the recovered ordnance. Anyone with information about this investigation is encouraged to call El Centro Detective Adrian Chilpa at 760-335-4662 or the Detective Bureau at 760-337-4502.