San Diego

Tow Truck Employee Finds Man Locked in Compartment

A traffic stop conducted by the San Diego Police Department (SDPD) led to the discovery of a Chinese citizen within a locked compartment of a car Saturday.

At approximately 1:55 a.m., an officer ordered the impoundment of a 2016 Toyota after a traffic stop on Interstate 15 near Clairemont Mesa Boulevard, according to SDPD.

Road One Towing took the vehicle to an impound lot at 4955 Ruffner Street, where a tow yard employee reportedly heard screaming coming from the car.

The employee found the noise coming from a locked compartment, and San Diego Fire Department officials and San Diego police officers were notified to investigate.

At approximately 4:45 a.m., SDPD called U.S. Customs and Border Protection to take the man into custody. The driver of the vehicle was also arrested, according to SDPD.

The driver, identified as Salvador Vera, Jr., faces charges of human smuggling according to a federal complaint. Shulin Zheng of China will likely be processed for deportation, according to a statement.

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