The Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office (MCSO) reports that they are looking for information on three suspects involved in a marijuana robbery and kidnapping that happened on Tuesday evening.
At around 6;00 p.m. on May 7, a Laytonville man was at his home visiting with two of his neighbors when he heard a gunshot in his front yard.
When the man went out to investigate, he saw three black males armed with handguns, and a Hispanic couple, who were later identified as Roberto Landa and Katherina Speer, standing at his front door.
The suspects confronted the victim and his neighbors before binding and restraining them and searching the house.
According to the victim, one of the neighbors had brought a puppy with them which one of the suspects later shot and killed as an apparent intimidation tactic to gain compliance.
The suspects found and took what the victim estimated to be around 100 pounds of cannabis flower.
Needing help getting back to the highway, the three black males then kidnapped the victim while Landa and Speer remained at the house with the two neighbors.
The suspects were about two miles from the house when the driver lost control of the vehicle and rolled it onto its side.
When the suspects were unsuccessful in turning the vehicle upright, they attempted to carjack an approaching pickup truck carrying two adult males and two females.
The pickup driver tried to back away rapidly as the suspects fired three rounds at his vehicle but lost control and turned the truck on its side on the steep incline.
The victim stated that he thought the occupants of the vehicle were able to escape on foot but was not entirely sure.
The suspects were then successful in carjacking two adult women in a white Ford Explorer with a Rebel Flag painted on the hood, forcing them to load the stolen cannabis into the vehicle.
The victim, who had been placed by the side of the road, was able to free himself from his restraints and sneak away into a wooded area, observing that the two females were walking away from the scene while the suspects drove off in their vehicle.
At the house, the two neighbors were able to free themselves from their restraints and overpower and detain Landa and Speer who were later retrieved by Sheriff’s deputies and booked into the county jail, each on an open count of conspiracy to commit robbery.
Their bail was set at 50,000 each.
At around 8:30 p.m., MCSO received a 911 call from someone who had seen a Facebook post talking about the robbery.
When law enforcement began to receive calls from people claiming to be following the stolen Ford, the California Highway Patrol, Willits Police Department, and MCSO conducted several high-risk felony traffic stops of vehicles that matched the description but determined that the occupants were not involved in any criminal activity and released them.
The three suspects are wanted on charges of Kidnapping, Robbery, Carjacking, Assault with a Deadly Weapon-Firearm, Conspiracy, and Animal Cruelty.
The Sheriff’s Office is asking anyone with information regarding the three occupants of the overturned truck or the three male suspects in the white Ford to contact the MCSO Communications Center or the WeTip anonymous crime reporting line.