Armed gang member arrested after standoff near downtown Fresno

A neighborhood near downtown Fresno was locked down Friday morning while police waited out an Eastside Bulldog gang member who was believed to be high on methamphetamine and armed with an assault rifle.

The man, identified as Johnny Vega, 38, was taken into custody about 9 a.m. in a neighborhood between Clark and Valeria streets and McKenzie and Grant avenues. A police SWAT team was at a fourplex in the 300 block of Clark Avenue.

Police Lt. Joe Gomez said officers were flagged down shortly after 3 a.m. by a man and his girlfriend who were fleeing the neighborhood. The man told officers Vega came to his residence wrapped in a blanket, pulled out the rifle and accused the man of having an affair with Vega’s girlfriend.

Vega demanded cash but the victim had none, so Vega took the man’s cell phone and ordered him into the bathroom, Gomez said, threatening to shoot the man if he came out. A short time later, the man escaped and called his girlfriend, asking her to come and get him. The couple saw police and asked for help.

Vega was wanted on charges of assault with a deadly weapon, robbery and making terrorist threats, Gomez said. He has a $1 million warrant for identity theft.