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DRIVE-BY SUSPECT PLEADS NO CONTEST: A man who fired a 9 mm handgun seven times during a drive-by shooting in west Modesto on Feb. 16 was captured within hours because officers were at the crime scene conducting another investigation. According to a statement from the Stanislaus County district attorney's office, Jarian Tarryl Roya, 29, pleaded no contest to attempted murder, attempted use of a handgun during the commission of a crime and causing great bodily injury. He was sentenced to 20 years in prison last week and must serve 85 percent of that time, or 17 years, before he can be eligible for parole. One shot struck the intended victim in the back; several bystanders near Budget Meats on Maze Boulevard saw the crime. Roya fled to the Budget Inn on South Ninth Street, where he was arrested.

CITIZEN POLICE ACADEMY: The Stanislaus County Sheriff's Department will offer a five-week Citizen Police Academy starting Aug. 19 designed to inform residents on how the law enforcement agency works. The academy is free and open to residents 21 and older; it is scheduled from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Tuesdays. The sessions will be at the department's main office at 250 E. Hackett Road, just east of Crows Landing Road and south of Whitmore Avenue. Participants will learn how the department investigates crimes and deals with issues such as gangs, drugs, family violence and other community-related topics. The participants also will receive a tour of the sheriff's headquarters, coroner's facility, jail facilities and regional training center for new peace officers, along with the Stanislaus County district attorney's office. The citizen academy also will present demonstrations from several specialty sheriff's teams and units. Participants will meet and talk to the sheriff's command and management staff. The Sheriff's Department asks anyone interested in receiving an application for the academy to call 558-8930.

PUBLIC CAN LEARN TO DRIVE DEFENSIVELY: The Stanislaus County Sheriff's Regional Training Center is offering a defensive driving course for businesses with employees who drive vehicles for their jobs. During the four-hour defensive driver course, participants will learn about safe driving, avoiding accidents and vehicle control recovery through hands-on training with law enforcement instructors from around the Central Valley. The cost of the course is $135. "Public safety personnel have been receiving this type of defensive driving training for many years, and now we want to offer it to the private sector," said sheriff's Lt. Jim Gordon, the training center's director. For more information, call Mike Cook at 652-0615 or e-mail him at mcook@stanislaussheriff.com.

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