Stolen motorcycle led to Mecca standoff

Cesar Vela, 30, ran from police in Palm Desert leading to standoff in Mecca

MECCA, Calif. - We're learning new information about the suspect and the events that led to a standoff on Wolff Street in Mecca Wednesday afternoon.

Cesar Vela, a 30-year-old from Palm Springs, was initially stopped at about 4:30 a.m. in the 47000 block of Golden Bush Court in Palm Desert for driving a stolen motorcycle.

Officers with the Palm Desert Police Department said they detained Vela for motorcycle theft and for being a felon in possession of a handgun, but before they could take him into custody, he ran from the scene.

While officers were attempting to track him down, they determined Vela was also wanted for questioning in connection to an assault with a deadly weapon that took place a week earlier in Thousand Palms.

Around 12:15 p.m., police spotted Vela driving another motorcycle in the same area. A pursuit began, leading officers to the 65300 block of Wolff Street in Mecca, according to a release.

Officers said Vela abandoned the motorcycle and barricaded himself in the home of an acquaintance for about an hour and a half. Vela eventually came out of the home and was taken into custody.

He was arrested for driving a stolen vehicle, being a felon in possession of a firearm and felony evading of a peace officer. No injuries were reported during the pursuit or the arrest, officers said in the release.

If you have any information about the incident, call the Palm Desert Police Department at 760-836-1600 or Valley Crime Stoppers at 760-341-7867.

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