Crime

On his birthday, driver arrested on suspicion of DUI while carrying loaded ghost gun

A man booked on charges of driving with a blood alcohol level three times above the legal limit also faces charges of carrying a loaded 9 mm ghost gun, the Fresno County Sheriff’s Office reports.

Ghost guns are firearms fabricated without serial numbers, a crime in California. The weapon taken from Michael Martinez of Lemoore was patterned from a Glock design.

Sheriff’s spokesman Tony Botti said that about 1:30 p.m. Monday, Martinez was northbound on South Dickenson Avenue approaching West Mt. Whitney Avenue when he narrowly avoided a collision with another car and then reportedly went airborne for about 20 feet in a gray Buick SUV.

Martinez, who had turned 28 Monday, walked to a nearby farming business and asked to use a telephone. A worker there suspected Martinez was drunk and followed Martinez back to his vehicle to prevent him from driving away, Botti said.

The worker noticed a handgun on the floor of the Buick, and called sheriff’s deputies, who detained Martinez and contacted the California Highway Patrol. CHP officers determined that Martinez failed a sobriety test with the high alcohol level.

Botti said while the assembly of ghost guns is legal under federal law, the California Department of Justice requires a person to apply for a unique serial number.

Anyone with additional information on Michael Martinez can contact Crime Stoppers at 559-498-7867 or www.valleycrimestoppers.org.

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A native of Colorado, Jim Guy studied political science, Latin American politics and Spanish literature at Fresno State University, and advanced Spanish grammar in Cuernavaca, Mexico.
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