(Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s deputies maintain an investigation on May 28 near Monte Vista Drive where several suspects wearing ski masks burst into a home, attacked three teen males with hammers and made off with several items. File photo by Tarmo Hannula/Register-Pajaronian)
APTOS — Four Watsonville minors, between the ages of 15 and 16, were arrested on charges of attempted murder and robbery following a brazen early morning attack at an Aptos home on May 28.
Santa Cruz County Sheriff Sgt. Brian Cleveland said four masked suspects broke into a garage on the 100 block of Monte Vista Drive in Aptos and assaulted three teenage boys with hammers on May 28 at 1:41 a.m.
The victims, ages 16 and 17, all suffered significant head injuries. The oldest victim required care at a trauma center and has not yet fully recovered, Cleveland said.
Early in the investigation, Sheriff’s detectives identified and arrested a 15-year-old suspect. Since then, detectives served several search warrants and learned about the suspects and the circumstances of the assault, identifying the motive as an attempt to steal cannabis and cash.
Working closely with the District Attorney’s Office, detectives have now arrested the three remaining suspects responsible for the attack, all 16 years of age.
“Sheriff (Jim) Hart promised that everyone responsible for this brutal assault would be arrested,” said Undersheriff Craig Wilson/ “These suspects need to be held accountable for what they did.”
Because they are minors, no names were released in the case.
A 15-year-old male juvenile suspect was arrested for attempted murder, robbery, burglary and conspiracy. A 16-year-old male juvenile was arrested for assault with a deadly weapon, robbery and burglary.
A 16-year-old male juvenile was arrested for burglary and conspiracy. Another 16-year-old male juvenile was charged with robbery, burglary and conspiracy.
One of the victims reportedly posted cannabis for sale on social media. One of the suspects knew one of the victims and was able to see the post, according to Cleveland. The suspects then planned the robbery based on the posting, police said.
Anyone with information about the case is asked to call Sgt. Dee Baldwin at 454-7635.