Trio Arrested for Series of Violent Carjackings

August 20, 2009 12:00:00 AM PDT
Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer says Arturo Zepeda and Lusio Villa, along with a 17 year old, would party all night, get drunk and then scour the streets of Fresno looking for a victim. Dyer said, "As they drank more, they were embrazened."Their target? Whoever they came across. The Chief said, "They were calloused, violent and selecting innocent victims in our city." The first victim, a frail 69 year old man delivering newspapers at a Northwest Fresno Denny's, was dragged out of his car at gunpoint, robbed and carjacked.

Investigators say the group attacked 5 more people within a week. Then on August 12th, the most vicious attack happened in the 95.7 radio station parking lot. The Chief said, "The 17 year old kicked the victim in the face so hard it left a footprint on the victim's face."

That victim is James O'Shaughnesy, better known as "Spotman" on 95.7's Bob and Tom's morning radio show. O'Shaughnesy, still recovering from recent heart surgery, was unconscious and clinging to life. When he didn't show up for programming the station went silent. "Carter", the station's Program Director and a D.J. said, "If the radio station goes off air the computer system calls the Program Director within a minute." Carter then called O'Shaughnesy but he didn't answer. That's when she knew something was terribly wrong because "Spotman" never missed his spot.

O'Shaughnesy regained consciousness long enough to call his boss and was barely able to say "Station, help." Carter pulled into the parking lot minutes later and said the man who hired her 10 years ago was unrecognizable. "It was hard to tell who it was."

Station General Manager Layne Ryan said, "To have something like that happen to a guy that just wants to get out of his car and carry his lunch pail into the office is pretty unfortunate."

Days later the suspects were at it again. But this time, they tried to carjack the undercover officer on their trail. Chief Dyer said, "Suspect Zepeda exited his car and yelled out to the detective to get out of his car."

Police arrested all three suspects. Zepeda and Villa pleaded not guilty to several charges in court Thursday morning. The 17 year old is in juvenile court.

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