Staff Reports

Back to: Obituaries
December 20, 2013
Follow Obituaries

Five arrested after Mono traffic stop

An ounce of methamphetamine was seized in Mammoth Lakes after two men arrested on Wednesday afternoon during a traffic stop allegedly told officers they were on their way to a drug buy.

The sequence began at about 1:30 p.m. when Mammoth Lakes Police officers and Mono County deputies pulled over a black pickup on several vehicle code violations.

According to Mono County Sheriff’s spokeswoman Jennifer Hansen, the men showed signs of being under the influence. Agents from the Mono County Narcotics Enforcement Team were called in with narcotics dog “Tara” and found a glass pipe with methamphetamine inside.

Driver Gregorio Tinoco Hernandez, 24, Antonio Garcia Serrano, 36, both Mammoth Lakes residents, were questioned after being taken into custody. Hernandez said he was on his way to buy methamphetamine from someone else.

With that information, drug enforcement officers from Mono and Inyo counties set up a buy. According to Hansen, when they arrived at the location, Bishop resident Rene Lugo Cortez, 22, recognized the undercover vehicle. Cortez got out of his vehicle and told the other two passengers to drive off.

Cortez met with the undercover agents, knowing they were not the intended buyers, and then tried to run, but he was caught and taken into custody.

Authorities caught up to Cortez’s vehicle and conducted a traffic stop. Tara conducted a search of the vehicle and alerted agents to the presence of narcotics in the vehicle.

A glass pipe, an ounce of methamphetamine, and a digital scale were located inside the vehicle.

Driver Kenneth Chandler, 21, and passenger, Felis Landa, 26, both of Bishop, were arrested.

When Cortez, Chandler, and Landa were questioned, they admitted to smoking methamphetamine and that they have traveled from Bishop to Mammoth Lakes with the intention of selling methamphetamine to Hernandez. All five individuals were transported and booked into the Mono County Jail in Bridgeport, Hansen said.

Hernandez, 24, of Mammoth Lakes, was arrested for possession of a controlled substance; possession of controlled substance paraphernalia; and being under the influence of a controlled substance.

Serrano, 36, of Mammoth Lakes, was arrested for possession of a controlled substance; possession of controlled substance paraphernalia; and being under the influence of a controlled substance.

Cortez, 22, of Bishop, was ultimately arrested for transportation of a controlled substance; possession of a controlled substance; possession of a controlled substance for sales; possession of controlled substance paraphernalia; being under the influence of a controlled substance; and conspiracy to commit a crime. Cortez is currently in custody in the Mono County Jail.

Landa, 26, of Bishop, was arrested for possession of a controlled substance for sales; possession of a controlled substance; being under the influence of a controlled substance; and conspiracy to commit a crime. Landa is currently in custody in the Mono County Jail.

Chandler, 21, of Bishop, was arrested for possession of a controlled substance for sale; possession of a controlled substance; being under the influence of a controlled substance; and conspiracy to commit a crime. Chandler is currently in custody in the Mono County Jail.

Charges for the five individuals are pending through the Mono County District Attorney’s Office.


Explore Related Articles

The Record Courier Updated Feb 6, 2014 01:06PM Published Dec 20, 2013 03:22PM Copyright 2013 The Record Courier. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.