The high-profile police action outside the south Napa Target store Tuesday morning, which sparked rumors of a shooting, was the culmination of a weeks-long investigation that resulted in three arrests and the seizure of two pounds of methamphetamine.
According to a statement from Napa County Sheriff's Captain Tracey Stuart:
During the month of October 2012, agents with the Napa Special Investigations Bureau (NSIB) conducted an investigation into three people dealing drugs in Napa County: Nicanor Silva, Aurora Marin and Fidel Hurtado.
The investigation yielded over two (2) pounds of methamphetamine, packaging materials and drug proceeds.
The investigation culminated on October 23, 2012, at about 10:30 am, when the three (3) Sonoma county residents came to the South Napa Market Place parking lot (Soscol/Imola) for a two (2) pound drug deal.
Out of concern for the safety of all involved and people in the area, a distraction device was utilized to safely arrest the suspects (a distraction device makes a loud noise and a bright light).
All three (3) suspects were arrested with the assistance of the Napa County Sheriff’s Office, Napa Police Department and the Department of Homeland Security.
A search of Nicanor’s residence (an apartment at 18360 Sierra Drive in Sonoma) yielded an additional two (2) ounces of suspected methamphetamine.
All three were arrested and booked into NCDC for possession for sale of methamphetamine and conspiracy.
Source: Napa County Sheriff's Office. Arrest information does not indicate a conviction.
The bust caused consternation and fear among shopping center workers and customers, several of whom shared their experiences on the Napa Valley Patch Facebook page
"The flash device was fired right next to my car and I was removed from my car by the Sheriff while the drug dealers were being arrested. There was no gunfire. But, it was very scary," posted Adrienne Lane Amdahl.
To read more bystander reactions, please see Napa Police Action Sparks Shooting Rumors. Click "Keep me posted" to receive automatic updates on NSIB activities.