Police find handgun, wanted felon in parked vehicle


Police found a handgun and a wanted felon when they checked on a man slumped over the steering wheel of a parked car outside a McDonalds restaurant, authorities said. 

Officers responded to the restaurant on Cochrane Road about 12:07 a.m. Thursday, and saw the man sitting in the driver’s seat of a 1986 Ford pickup, according to Morgan Hill police Sgt. Troy Hoefling. 

When police contacted him the man identified himself as Aaron Clawson, 28 of Gilroy, and officers shortly determined there was a felony warrant for his arrest related to a previous theft incident in Morgan Hill, Hoefling said. 

Police searched his vehicle and found a .22 caliber Derringer handgun, according to Hoefling. 

Clawson was arrested on the felony warrant and suspicion of illegal possession of a firearm, police said. 

The arrest warrant was related to a Jan. 18 incident at the Extended Stay America hotel on Jarvis Drive, Hoefling added. In that incident, police on patrol noticed a stolen vehicle in the hotel’s parking lot. Upon investigation, police identified the room the vehicle was associated. Police also determined one of the occupants of the room was a parolee, and officers conducted a parole search of the room. 

Found in the hotel room were “multiple stolen items,” methamphetamine and the owner’s manual to the stolen vehicle outside, Hoefling said. 

Clawson and three other suspects – Jerome Moore, 32 of Gilroy, Jesus Cota, 27 of Castroville, and Blanca Valles, 27 of Morgan Hill – were recommended to be charged by prosecutors with possession of stolen property and other charges, Hoefling said.