Arrest made, memorabilia found belonging to Valens family

Clear Lake police have made an arrest in connection with the theft of items belonging to the family of the late Ritchie Valens.

On Friday, Feb. 15, around 3:40 p.m., Clear Lake police officers arrested 59-year-old Mark Hobbs at an apartment in Rudd, Iowa.  Hobbs is alleged to have taken the three Ritchie Valens Family’s framed pictures from an event on Feb. 2 at the Holiday Motor Lodge in Clear Lake. Those pictures were located early on Feb. 14 in a parking lot in the 500 block of Highway 18, Clear Lake.  According to officials, it is unknown how the pictures arrived in the parking lot.

Hobbs was seen by investigators on surveillance video taking the pictures and was later identified by witnesses.

The Clear Lake Police Department was assisted by the Floyd County Sheriff’s Office in arresting Hobbs.

Hobbs was charged with Theft in the Third Degree and transported to the Cerro Gordo County Jail.

The case remains under investigation. If anyone has any information on the items they are encouraged to contact the Clear Lake Police Department at 641-357-2186 or email

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