Thursday’s column

It should come as little surprise that folks in Altadena dont think a group home for sex offenders makes their neighborhood of $500,000 homes desirable.

Who would?

Just look at the cast of characters living in the halfway house in the 4400 block of Risinghill:

[BULLET]Ernesto Corona Ayala, 51, convicted of lewd and lascivious acts with a child under the age of 14.

[BULLET]Gerald Christoph Baca, 56, also convicted of lewd and lascivious acts with a child under the age of 14.

[BULLET]Ernest Brian Bradley, 37, convicted of lewd and lascivious acts with a child under the age of 14 and convicted of using force.

[BULLET]John Fitzgerald Carter, 43, convicted of forcible rape.

[BULLET]Cedric Parker, 47, convicted of forcible rape and sexual battery.

[BULLET]Anthony Raymond Rayas, 44, convicted of sodomy and lewd and lascivious acts with a child under the age of 14.

As many as 150 people who dont want this group of unsavory criminals in their neighborhood demanded the removal of the halfway home from their quiet neighborhood Tuesday night.

Please dont underestimate us, Latrell Cottele-Moore, a longtime Meadows resident told the crowd. We will do whatever is necessary to get them out.

Their pleas received little more than lip service.

A spokesman for state Sen. Jack Scott, D-Pasadena, essentially told the residents there were no easy solutions to the problem.

According to reporter Elise Kleeman, New Beginnings Sober Living, which operates the home, told residents the matter is being looked into by the company.

Who knows what that means?

The Sheriffs Department assured everyone the offenders were all wearing GPS-equipped anklet bracelets.

Translated, that means detectives will know where an offender has been after a crime has been committed.

Perhaps it should come as no surprise that the bureaucracies and corporations promoting halfway homes for sex offenders can offer little in the way of solutions for a residential neighborhood in an unincorporated portion of Los Angeles County.

What might be surprising though is that clusters of sex offenders are everywhere in the San Gabriel Valley.

Using a simple search of the states Megans Law Web site, I found groups of these men living together in Azusa, Bassett, Pasadena, Montebello and El Monte. They are everywhere even Beverly Hills.

In some cases, they are close to schools and churches. In others they live in residential neighborhoods. Plenty live in trailer parks and motels along Garvey Avenue, and Colorado and Whittier boulevards.

Last August, when the state budget crisis was in full swing, there was a possibility that California would stop paying rent for these guys. Then, instead of being housed and sort of monitored, a lot of sex offenders would have been homeless.

Something in our government is broken. You dont have to look any further than Risinghill Road in Altadena or the Megans Law Web site to see it.

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  • Tim K.

    “Translated, that means detectives will know where an offender has been after a crime has been committed.”

    Given how hard it was to figure out that someone was shot in ALTADENA not DUARTE, this is a much needed upgrade!

  • angelbec

    I was browsing the Megan’s Law website and was amazed to find that a convicted sex offender was serving coffee and donuts at my church. When I contacted the church they told me “Oh – we know – we keep a close eye on him”

    It’s not so much the housed offenders that you have to be wary of – it’s the regular people that you come into contact with that you would have no idea unless you looked them up.

  • Tom

    Run your neighborhood in the Megan’s database every so often. Look around and see who lives near you and your kids!

    True, it is sometimes difficult to remove an individual registrant from an area depending on their control and conditions. This place sounds like a business though…hopefully, the county will find some resolve soon.

  • Harvey Pollack MD

    This company has other properties in the area. At 50 North Quigley, they bought a house under the pretense of opening a shelter for battered women, then under the pretense of being used as a single family residence. Ultimately, they opened another house for child rapists and other deviants just like the one recently closed in Altadena. The place on North Quigley is next door to a family with children and across the street from our house with three children. Over the coures of a year, there has been more than a 200% turnover in inmates, as they have had to be rearrested for diverse offenses. This facility is a direct danger to the children of our neighborhood. It is astounding and reprehensible that this business, “New Beginnings for Sober Living” that creates such a danger to the public is allowed to exist.

    And indeed, our public officials have had little interest.

    For example, there is a motel nearby at 3800 Colorado Blvd, which has also been used to house the rapists, and also been a site of much prostitution, which has now come up for renewal of its 40 year zoning variance. In spite of the long record of trouble, the County Planning Commission not has been eager to refuse the renewal, as in the words of Commissioner Leslie Bellamy “it would not be right to have the owner lose money invested in this property,” not withstanding the investor is not even a resident of the County, and has been profiting through the operation of this center of rapists and prostitution for the past three years.

    Although Commissioner Pat Modugno and Commissioner Wayne Rew have been sympathetic to our need to have these hazards removed from our community, they are essentially alone as public officials who are willing to support us with more than lip service.

    The general complacency of our elected officials in this matter is beyond understanding. The housing of the convicted child rapists and other sexual deviants in close proximity to children is a repungent practice that creates a grave danger to children and to our community.