A carjacking suspect was arrested on multiple counts after he was observed near a Merced grocery store on Tuesday evening.
Keythan Jones-Slaise, 19, was arrested near the Raley Mall after being seen with a stolen vehicle during an early morning carjacking, according to a Merced Police Department news release.
Police said officers responded to a report of a carjacking around 2:24 a.m. in the area of the 1700 block of East 23rd Street.
The alleged victim reportedly told officers he was contacted by a woman he met on social media to pick her up on East 23rd Street.
When he drove to the area, the woman got into his car. A man then appeared with a handgun, police said.
Police said the man forced the victim out of his car before fleeing the area in the vehicle with the woman, police said.
At approximately 10:15 p.m., an officer near the Raley Mall observed the stolen vehicle pull into the parking lot.
Police said a person was seen exiting the vehicle and entering a store. Police said they arrested Jones-Slaise who was found with items belonging to the victim.
Authorities said the victim identified Jones-Slaise as the man who hijacked him that morning.
Jones-Slaise was incarcerated in the Merced County Jail on suspicion of felony charges including carjacking, theft of a vehicle without owners’ consent, possession of stolen property and possession of a stolen vehicle, according to prison records.
He remains in custody in lieu of $160,000 bond.
According to the police, the vehicle and the stolen items were returned to the victim.
Police are asking anyone with information regarding the alleged crime to contact Constable Elliot at 209-388-7723 or by email at [email protected]
Certain crimes may be reported through the Merced Police Department website and anonymous tips may be submitted by calling 209-385-4725.
Anonymous information may also be submitted to law enforcement through the Merced Area Crime Stoppers website.