Friday, 08 June 2012 10:45

Auto Body Employees Fight Off Robbers in Pajaro

Four brothers are accused of assaulting employees of a body shop and a tire business in Monterey County.

According to the Monterey County Sheriff's Office, Jorge Mendoza and his three younger brothers, Jaime, Oscar and Damian, entered Joe's Body Shop on Salinas Road in Pajaro just before 5 p.m. Traffic came to a halt heading into Pajero as workers at the auto body shop fended off the would-be robbers.

Watsonville police issued a Nixle alert urging motorists to avoid the area. Traffic backed up to Main Street and Riverside Drive in Watsonville, according to the police department.

The four robbers who tried to hold up Joe's Body Shop were fought off by employees, turning the robbery attempt into a free-for-all melee, and sheriff's deputies responded to sort things out. The four brothers were arrested.

Deputies arrived and took three of the Mendoza brothers into custody. The fourth, Damian, fled the scene and was later found hiding at a nearby residence.

The Mendoza brothers are accused of assaulting two of the employees with a steel pipe, a tire iron and a chain. The disturbance escalated and witnesses reported that Damian and Oscar Mendoza assaulted two more employees next door at Los Pelones Tire Shop.

The suspects suffered defensive injuries from the victims, deputies said.

The brothers were taken to Natividad medical center for treatment of their injuries and then transported to Monterey Country where they were booked on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon.