Mountain View Voice

News - August 16, 2013

Crime briefs

Police search for missing woman

Mountain View police are searching for a missing woman last seen at a Mountain View gas station Tuesday evening.

Police officials said that Melinda Alexander, 21, was last seen on Aug. 13 around 7 p.m. at the Shell Gas Station at 807 N. Shoreline Blvd. She is not from the area and was not carrying her phone or ID with her, police said.

She was dropped off at the Shell Gas Station after she and her sister got into a verbal argument and has not been seen nor heard from since. Alexander has family who live in San Francisco and San Mateo counties, but they had not had any contact from her, according to a post to the Mountain View Police Department's Facebook page made at about 1:30 p.m. Aug. 14.

Alexander is described as 5 feet-4-inches tall, weighing 102 pounds with brown, shoulder-length hair, brown eyes and a medium complexion. She was last seen wearing a black tank-top, black skirt, black high-heels and a black purse. Alexander was also wearing a silver necklace with a lock and diamond.

Police are asking anyone who may have seen her to contact them at 650-903-6395 and refer to case number 13-4520, or call 9-1-1 if it is an emergency. Anonymous tips may be sent via text at 274637. Be sure to include "mvtips" in the body of your text along with the message.

Cops break up suspected gang brawl

Three teens, two of them juveniles, were arrested in Mountain View on the evening of Aug. 12 for allegedly participating in a suspected brawl between rival gangs, a spokesman with the Mountain View Police Department said.

A 16-year-old and a 15-year-old — both from Mountain View — and a 19-year-old from San Jose were booked into juvenile hall and county jail for allegedly throwing bottles and stealing the tennis racket of a passerby during the fight, Sgt. Sean Thompson of the MVPD said.

According to statements of witnesses and video obtained from a witness, the 15-year-old was booked into jail for assault with a deadly weapon for throwing bottles at what may have been rival gang members, Thompson said. The 16-year-old allegedly stole a tennis racked from someone in the park and was attempting to use it as a weapon; he was booked for assault with a deadly weapon and robbery. The 19-year-old, identified as Eric Castro, was also accused of throwing bottles and contributing to the delinquency of minors for participating in a fight with the juveniles.

Thompson said that two groups of five began fighting around 5:30 p.m. on Aug. 12 in Castro Park. A witness told officers that the men appeared to be throwing up gang signs in the lead-up to the brawl.

When police arrived the men scattered and only the three were detained, Thompson said. The rest got away.

He said police aren't positive at this point it was a gang fight, but that all signs pointed to it being a conflict between local branches of the California street gangs the Nortenos and the Surenos.

—Nick Veronin

—Andrea Gemmet

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