Escaped San Quentin inmate arrested in Paso Robles


PASO ROBLES — An inmate who walked away from San Quentin State Prison on Dec. 26 was apprehended Saturday, Dec. 29, at a fast food restaurant in Paso Robles, the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation reported.

Shalom Mendoza, 21, was taken into custody by CDCR’s Office of Correctional Safety, Special Service Unit agents at approximately 12:30 p.m. A civilian observed Mendoza at a Taco Bell, and contacted CDCR agents. Mendoza was taken into custody without incident.

Mendoza was reported missing during an institutional count at approximately 9:35 p.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 26. He was assigned to work outside the secured perimeter of the prison, as some inmates are, and he took advantage of an opportunity to leave, CDCR reported. He is the suspect in a carjacking that happened in a Home Depot parking lot in the San Rafael area. The car, a Toyota RAV4, was found abandoned off the 101 Freeway north of Paso Robles on Friday, Dec. 28.

He was also reportedly seen at a Dollar Store in San Miguel about 4:20 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 28. Mendoza purchased dark clothing, CDCR reported.

Mendoza was received by CDCR from Los Angeles County on Dec. 20, 2017, with a five-year sentence for use of a deadly weapon during a carjacking/attempted carjacking and evading or attempting to evade a peace officer while driving recklessly. He was transported to Salinas Valley State Prison and his case will be referred to the Marin County District Attorney’s Office for consideration of escape charges and carjacking.

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