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San Benito
April 16, 2024

Hollister robbery suspect charged with felonies, faces court hearing

A suspect accused of felony robbery and battery is scheduled for an upcoming court hearing after being charged by prosecutors.

James Infante Villegas, 18 at the time of his November arrest, faces a preliminary hearing at 2 p.m. March 24 before Judge Steven Sanders.

The district attorney has charged him on suspicion of felony robbery with an enhancement for causing great bodily injury, felony battery, and misdemeanor resisting arrest, according to court documents.

The pre-preliminary hearing March 24 should set the stage for a crucial preliminary examination where a judge decides if there’s enough evidence for a jury trial.

According to a statement from the Hollister Police Department:

On the morning of Nov. 21, the Hollister Police Department and allied agencies conducted two search warrant operations within the City of Hollister. The operations were related to a robbery investigation.

On the evening of November 16th, Hollister Police officers responded to McCarthy Park regarding the report of a strong-arm robbery that had just occurred. Officers contacted a juvenile victim who had visible injuries. The victim reported that he was in the park and approached by a group of males about 18 years old. The males battered the victim and took money along with other personal property. During the incident, one of the suspects repeatedly mentioned having a gun, and the victim was verbally threatened multiple times. The victim was later treated for his injuries and released.

The victim reported that he thought he recognized at least one of the suspects from a previous Hollister Police press release, and another suspect had attended school with the victim. Patrol officers conducted additional follow-up related to the case and were able to identify James Infante (18 years old), and two juvenile suspects.


James Infante and one of the juvenile suspects were located and arrested that same evening. Infante was physically combative with officers when he was arrested. The third juvenile suspect was identified through follow-up investigation by patrol officers and arrested a few days after the event.

Hollister Police Detectives continued to follow-up in the investigation and obtained search warrants for two residences in Hollister. Due to the likelihood that weapons were involved in the original incident, HPD investigators requested the assistance of the Monterey County Sheriff’s Office SWAT team.

On the morning of November 21st, Hollister Police patrol and investigations staff, along with Gilroy Police Anti-Crime Team officers, agents from the Unified Narcotics Enforcement Team, San Benito County Probation, and Monterey County Sheriff’s SWAT Team members conducted two simultaneous search warrant operations within the city limits. During the initial phase of one of the warrant services, Jose Infante (54 years old) refused to cooperate with officers and was subdued with less-lethal munitions. Infante was arrested for resisting, delaying, and obstructing a peace officer.

The Hollister Police Department utilized all available personnel to ensure the safety of the public throughout the course of the search warrants. The Department would like to extend its many thanks to the officers from allied agencies who assisted us with this investigation.

Anyone with information regarding these investigations are requested to contact The Hollister Police Department at 831-636-4330. Persons wishing to remain anonymous may call WeTip at (800) 78-CRIME. Information provided to WeTip may qualify for a reward.