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San Mateo, CA Police Department
Wednesday June 22nd, 2011 :: 08:37 p.m. PDT


Media Release / Community Alert - SMPD Arrests Suspect for Making Threats with a Firearm - No Injuries Involved

200 Franklin Parkway, San Mateo, CA 94403

Media Note: PIO Sgt. Dave Norris is out of the office until 6/29/11.
For PIO follow-up, please contact PIO Lieutenant Ted Gonzales at 650-522-7687 or

Assault with a deadly weapon (firearm), Drawing a firearm in a threatening manner, Carrying a loaded firearm - Suspect Arrested

On Wednesday, June 22, 2011, at 3:16 PM, several SMPD Officers and Detectives were dispatched to a report of a person threatening people with a firearm in the area of East Third Avenue and San Mateo Drive in the City of San Mateo.

Investigation revealed the following occurred: A 57 year old female (resident of San Mateo) was walking west on the sidewalk in the 100 block of East Third Avenue. For an unknown reason, a person (not the listed suspect) struck her in her upper back (almost knocking her down) thereby committing an assault and battery. This Suspect continued walking. This assault and battery was witnessed by Suspect VIOLA who was driving in the area. Suspect VIOLA stopped his vehicle and asked the victim if she was okay. She told him she was fine, at which time Suspect VIOLA parked his vehicle, and walked to the suspect who committed the assault/battery. Suspect VIOLA drew his .45 caliber semi-automatic handgun and pointed it at the assault suspect.

Several patrons in the Downtown area called SMPD Dispatch Services reporting the man with the gun. SMPD’s assigned Downtown Officer and another uniformed officer were on the scene immediately. The Officers witnessed Suspect VIOLA pointing his weapon at the assault suspect and immediately intervened and pointed their weapons at Suspect VIOLA, ordering him to drop his firearm. Suspect VIOLA turned toward the officers with the gun still in hand (in the ready fire position). The officers showed great restraint and continued to order Suspect VIOLA to drop the handgun. Suspect VIOLA finally complied, dropped the weapon and was safely taken into custody.

This was a busy time of day and the Downtown area was crowded with many patrons. Suspect VIOLA needlessly jeopardized many lives by introducing a weapon into a situation that involved a simple assault. If it were not for the officers on scene, this situation could have proven to be tragic.

No one involved in this incident was injured. No property was damaged. The suspect who committed the assault/battery was detained and interviewed. The situation involving his actions is being referred to the San Mateo County District Attorney’s Office for review for prosecution.

Suspect VIOLA was booked into the San Mateo County Jail for 1) Assault with a firearm, 2) Drawing a firearm in a threatening manner, and 3) Carrying a loaded firearm.

SUSPECT INFORMATION: Ashley VIOLA (Male - 23 years old), last known address in San Pablo, California

The SMPD wants to remind everyone that any time a gun is introduced into a situation it becomes very dangerous. Please consider the following safety guidelines:

• If you witness a crime occurring, call 9-1-1 and keep yourself in a safe position
• Be a good witness by observing the suspect, physical characteristics, clothing, tattoos and scars
• Be able to describe the weapon
• Observe the direction in which the suspect(s) travel
• Observe any vehicles associated with the suspect

If anyone was in the area during the time frame of this incident, we would encourage you to call and report your observations.

SMPD Investigations - 650-522-7650
Secret Witness Line - 650-522-7676
Text Anonymously - 650-262-3473
Email Anonymously -

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Please help us make your neighborhood safer and take a stand against crime. Please report all criminal behavior, join a neighborhood watch program, and help anyone that might fall victim to a crime. If a Neighborhood Watch doesn’t exist on your block, you can start one with help from SMPD. For additional information about the City of San Mateo Neighborhood Watch Program, call Sergeant Dave Norris at (650)522-7626 or visit our web

This ‘Press Release / Community Information' is being sent to you by The Public Information Office of the San Mateo Police Department. We at the SMPD take pride in alerting our community partners about activities and current events relevant to neighborhood incidents.

San Mateo, CA Police Department
200 Franklin Pkwy
San Mateo, CA 94403

Emergency: 9-1-1
Non-emergencies: 650-522-7700

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