Exeter teens arrested for 4-day crime spree
Four Exeter teens are behind bars following a four-day crime spree that included assault, robbery, kidnapping and attempted murder.
The crimes quickly escalated on April 4 when 17-year-old Pete Spray, Wyatt Valle, 14, and Ronald Jones and Logan Heath, both 13, confronted a woman delivering pizza at about 4 p.m. in the 200 block of S. Anderson Road in Exeter. The teens assaulted the 24-year-old woman, tied her up and forced her into a residence against her will and “attempted to murder her” according to the Tulare County Sheriff’s Department. The victim sustained non life threatening injuries, which she was treated for at a local hospital.
The teens, who were armed with unknown types of firearms, held the woman at gunpoint, stole an undetermined amount of cash and then fled from the scene in her 2005 Mazda MZ6 Hatchback. The juveniles also made threats to hurt civilians, according to the Sheriff’s Department.
At noon on April 7, officers with the Las Vegas Metro Police Department contacted the 17-year-old Spray at a local business in Las Vegas and detained him on other unrelated charges. During the investigation, Las Vegas PD also located the victim’s Mazda sedan in the parking lot of the business and secured it as evidence. Spray was arrested and later booked in the Las Vegas Juvenile Hall on a Tulare County warrant for attempted homicide, kidnapping, and carjacking. He is currently being held without bail.
Las Vegas PD searched the surrounding area for the other teens but were unable to find them. On Monday, April 8, Las Vegas PD, with assistance from the US Marshal’s Office, located Heath, Valle and Jones in the Las Vegas area and they were all taken into custody. No charges against the other juveniles were released.
In the meantime, Lt. Celis Rabena with the Exeter Police Department said officers were searching the town just in case any of them were still in the area. Rabena said officers patrolled the schools in case the armed teens attempted to go there. Rabena said he and Officer Mark Deurke are active shooter response instructors and most of Exeter’s officers have been trained in SWAT tactics through the Exeter-Farmersville-Woodlake Special Enforcement Team (SET).
“It just happens several of our officers had attended active shooter training just two weeks ago,” Rabena said.
Rabena said EPD has been working with Exeter Public Schools to develop its active shooter response on campuses throughout the elementary and high school district.
The case is being investigated by the Tulare County Sheriff’s Department Violent Crimes Unit. Anyone with information should contact Detective Steve Sanchez or Sgt. Kennedy at (559)733-6218 or (800) 808-0488.