Forensic Evidence Puts Felon Back in Jail

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March 3, 2021) – Solid patrol work, an involved follow-up by detectives and forensic science led to a convicted felon being charged with a new felony crime.

On October 24th, 2020 a CCPD Patrol officer initiated a traffic stop on a black BMW for running a stop sign at the 1300 block of NE Pine Island Road. The vehicle was very slow to stop, and traveled approximately half a mile before finally stopping. The officer made contact with the driver, as well as the passenger, Jesus Mendez. Both Mendez and the driver acted extremely nervous, and both were convicted felons.

A CCPD K9 officer arrived as backup to the stop and conducted an open-air sniff of the BMW, resulting in an alert. The ensuing search of the BMW located a loaded Glock Model 31 and one extended magazine behind the driver’s seat under a pillow. The position the gun was found in appeared recently placed, as any vehicle movement would have tipped the gun onto its side.

Both occupants were detained and interviewed, but possession of the Glock could not be determined immediately. Both were released, the driver with a citation for the stop sign and a warning for illegal tint on the BMW. The Glock was collected as evidence, and it was processed for fingerprints (negative) and for touch DNA.

On November 7th, 2020 Jesus Mendez was arrested during a separate incident for possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and aggravated assault. A search warrant was obtained for his DNA. The driver of the BMW was also incarcerated on unrelated charges, and a search warrant obtained his DNA as well.

Both occupants of the BMW on October 24th had their DNA compared to the Glock located on the traffic stop. The DNA results were returned on January 28th, 2021 revealing Mendez’s DNA on the weapon. Mendez was located at a home in Southwest Cape Coral by detectives with CCPD’s Major Crimes Unit and with the US Marshals Task Force and placed under arrest. He was additionally charged with violation of an injunction, as he was found in the company of a person whom he was court-ordered to stay away from. He was transported to the Lee County Jail.