Busy day on Mammoth Lane in Santa Clarita began with gunfire

LASD car. Signal file photo.
LASD car. Signal file photo.

The sound of gunfire jolted some Mammoth Lane residents from their sleep early Tuesday morning, for the start of a what turned out to be a busy day for Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station deputies.

At 4 a.m. Tuesday, at least three gunshots were fired on Mammoth Lane in Canyon Country, according to one woman who lives on the street.

When she went to the window to see what was going on, she saw, and recorded with her phone, a man standing in the middle of the street, brandishing a handgun and firing it.

“The gunman was walking down the hill and fired three shots,” she said, noting that she called the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station.

Responding deputies arrested the suspect, seized the firearm and collected spent shell casings of what appeared to be ammunition for a 9 millimeter handgun, she said.

Shortly before 7:15 a.m. Tuesday, deputies arrested Ronald Oatis, 69, of Canyon Country, on suspicion of discharging a firearm in public, a misdemeanor.

But deputies weren’t finished on Mammoth Lane.

Within an hour of the arrest, they arrested two women on Mammoth Lane on suspicion of forgery and counterfeiting.

The woman, both residents of North Hollywood, were arrested about 8 a.m.

“This was a substantial arrest,” Miller said. “It was on the same street (Mammoth), for counterfeiting.”

About an hour after the arrest of the gunman, deputes “in multiple vehicles” surrounded a white sedan, said the woman who was jolted from her sleep.

Although detectives are still investigating, and trying to confirm suspicions the shooting and the counterfeiting are related, Miller did confirm that deputies seized counterfeiting equipment found in a car.

“They found a check-washing solution in a car,” Miller said.

Racquel Torres, 42, who works in accounting, was one of the woman arrested on suspicion of forgery, counterfeiting a public or corporate seal. The other woman arrested for the same thing was identified as Erica Rene Romero, a 35-year-old security guard.

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