Police say they’ve captured a violent robber who terrorized a Stockton family and may be responsible for his own brother’s death in the process.
Forty-year-old Stephen Rodriguez is the first of several people officers say broke into this home on Julian Street early Sept. 2.
He was picked up in Manteca.
“Officers were called out for shots fired at a residence. When they got on scene, they located a 24-year-old male shot and killed inside the residence,” said Officer Joe Silva with the Stockton Police Department.
Officers won’t say what led them to Rodriguez, but they have revealed that the dead 24-year-old is his brother Angel Lopez-Mendez.
As for the young Hispanic family who lived at the corner of Julian and Anne streets for about a year, few of their neighbors got to know them at all.
“It’s normally quiet. We usually watch out for each other and take care of each other. This is something unfortunate … don’t have any idea who lived here, but I hope it never happens again,” said long-time Julian street homeowner Clifford Wright.
Is robbery something neighbors have had to deal with a lot?
“No. We have a good block, good neighbors, good neighbors,” said Becky Godoy, another long-time resident of Julian Street.
There have been several posts disagreeing with Godoy’s assessment on the Stockton Police Department’s Facebook page.
One young woman from Hayward, Tatiana Barrahas, claims the scene of the crime – 1602 Julian Street – was a drug house. She writes that her good friend, Angel Lopez-Mendez, might not have been there to steal.
Barrahas also claims that her friend worked and took care of his sick mother.
Police won’t comment on her friend’s criminal past, except to say that before this incident, he had a long one.
They also he frequently flipped his last name, Lopez-Mendez, around to Mendez-Lopez to try and confuse officers when he was in trouble.
With one arrest down, police say they’re working hard on naming the rest of those responsible for what happened on Julian Street.
The young family threatened when armed robbers broke into their home were unharmed.