A Saugus ex-convict found under a U-Haul box truck he was accused of stealing could face up to 10 years in federal prison as the result of a Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station investigation.
Bouquet Canyon resident Franz Grey rented a vehicle Nov. 14 with an agreement to return the unit the following day, according to court documents obtained by The Signal.
When Grey failed to return the rental truck, the company tried repeatedly to contact the suspect for about the next two weeks before ultimately reporting it as stolen on Dec. 5.
After tracking the box truck to Grey’s residence, detectives with the L.A. County Sheriff’s Department located Grey underneath it, according to court records.
Grey then gave deputies permission to enter his unlocked one-bedroom home, according to a criminal complaint, which also noted that deputies almost immediately located drug paraphernalia and a bag with a substance inside that’s believed to contain methamphetamine. (The complaint notes that the substance is currently being tested in a lab.)
“During the resulting protective sweep of the house,” deputies looked inside the bedroom and located, “in plain view,” 13 rounds of ammunition on the ground.
Grey is prohibited from possessing weapons as a result of two 2008 convictions, according to Los Angeles Superior Court records available online: He was sentenced to three years, eight months in prison for a felony hit-and-run causing death charge, and possession of a controlled substance.
Detectives then obtained a search warrant of the property in the 33500 block of Bouquet Canyon Road.
A criminal complaint listed the items that law enforcement officials found: 10 firearms; approximately 2,000 rounds of ammunition; almost 29 grams of suspected hydrocodone pills; more than 100 grams of suspected methamphetamine; about 16 grams of psilocybin mushrooms; and various drug paraphernalia.
Deputies also recovered a 9mm pistol with no serial number and 14 rounds of ammunition inside near the truck that Grey was found underneath, according to the complaint.
A customer service representative for U-Haul reached for comment Tuesday noted that some but not all of their vehicles contain tracking devices.
While only one count is listed in the criminal complaint, a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office, speaking generally and not about Grey’s case, noted it’s not uncommon for prosecutors to seek additional charges via indictment.
Grey is scheduled to be arraigned on the gun-possession charge Feb. 2 in downtown Los Angeles.