The lead suspect in a car-to-car shooting Sunday in Canyon Country has been identified as 25-year-old Michael Ray Garcia, an active gang member who lives in Valencia. When detectives serving a search warrant at his Via Gayo home arrived, they found evidence that he had just fled the location and he remains at large.
Garcia should be considered armed and dangerous. He is described as a male Hispanic, 5’8” tall and weighing 190 pounds. Detectives from the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station are seeking the public’s assistance in locating Garcia, who frequents the Newhall and Valencia areas and has a last known address in the 23000 block of Via Gayo in Valencia.
Garcia is the suspected shooter in a car-to-car incident that occurred April 5. Garcia and two other male suspects shot at the occupants of another vehicle near Whites Canyon Road and Pleasantdale Street, injuring two people. Both victims were taken to the hospital for treatment and one remains hospitalized.
Although detectives apparently missed the suspected shooter by just minutes, they recovered a 9mm handgun and the vehicle, a white 1994 Infinity that they believe were used in the commission of the crime. They also recovered eight rifles and a second handgun at the location.
Garcia is on active felony parole for being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm. Detectives believe there were two other individuals in the suspect vehicle the night of the incident. The investigation is continuing into their identities and whereabouts.
The public is warned that although the weapon used in the crime was recovered, the suspect may be armed and should be considered dangerous. If you see him, do not approach or confront him. Immediately dial 9-1-1 and deputies will respond.
Anyone with information regarding this crime or the whereabouts of Michael Ray Garcia is asked to call Detective Pat O’Neill, (661) 799-5154 or Detective Dan Finn, (661) 799-5153, of the station’s COBRA Unit. For anonymous tips please call the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff Station’s Crime Tip Line at 661-284-2TIP (2847) or report on-line at scvsheriff.com.
During the time local detectives were serving the search warrant at Garcia’s home, teams of investigators and other law enforcement officials were conducting a sweep of suspect locations in the Antelope and Santa Clarita valleys. During that operation, 26 gang members belonging to the Lancas 13 were arrested, 10 on federal indictments, 16 on state felony warrants. Twenty-two weapons were seized and five children were taken into protective custody.