A felon accused of carjacking a motorist and trying to take another’s car in Cabazon, assaulting both drivers, was charged Friday with carjacking and other offenses.
Kegan Matthew Nelson, 28, of Indio, was arrested Wednesday following a Riverside County Sheriff’s Department investigation.
Along with carjacking, Nelson was charged with attempted carjacking, two counts of assault with a deadly weapon and sentence-enhancing allegations of using a deadly weapon in the commission of a felony.
The defendant, who is being held in lieu of $500,000 bail at the Smith Correctional Facility, was slated to make his initial court appearance Friday afternoon at the Banning Justice Center.
According to sheriff’s Sgt. Ricardo Contreras, shortly after 5 a.m. Wednesday, Nelson allegedly confronted a motorist in the 48300 block of Seminole Drive, just north of Interstate 10, attempting to take his vehicle while armed with an unspecified weapon.
The victim, whose name was not released, was able to drive away from the location and call 911, Contreras said.
The motorist was not injured.
Nelson then walked roughly two blocks east, where he confronted a second motorist near the Morongo Travel Center, according to the sergeant. He alleged that Nelson “assaulted the victim and took (his) vehicle.”
The victim, also not identified, did not require hospitalization.
The theft was immediately reported to sheriff’s deputies, who initiated a search and broadcast the information to surrounding law enforcement agencies.
Contreras said San Bernardino County sheriff’s deputies located the stolen vehicle on Redlands Boulevard in Loma Linda, Nelson was taken into custody without incident.
“Evidence related to the crimes was located within the vehicle,” he said.
According to court records, Nelson has two prior convictions for attempted carjacking, for which he was sentenced to probation in August.