Way back Moe-chine

Janette Williams, Star-News star, reminded me of the early days of the online newspaper with this gem:


Hi Frank – do you remember this from the early days of our Website? We had a story with Moe looking soulfully through the bars, or wire mesh, of his cage. The next day the story in that spot was about a (new) police chief, but they didn’t change the photo….I remember it so well because Richard Winton called to mock…

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Father and son laid to rest

Twelve-year-old Albert Garcia and his father Juan were buried in Riverside Monday at a private ceremony.

Montebello police continue to badger the family about talking to the media, while they are apparently making little progress in their investigation. I received this note from a family member regarding police pressure in the case:

The cops told (the family) to not talk to the press because we were going to ruin the case.

I wonder if this is the sort police communication with citizens that Montebello’s new city council approves of?



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It’s a Moe Monday

The escape of Moe the Chimp from his compound in Devore has created somewhat of a stir in the newsroom.

Celebrity attorney Gloria Allred will hold a press conference this afternoon with Moe’s parent’s St. James and LaDonna Davis, at her office on Wilshire in Los Angeles this afternoon.

The search for Moe continues in the dense and brushy mountains near Devore. Three reporters will be covering this story for the paper tomorrow.

Here in the nerve center of the operation we are split into two factions: Those who want Moe coverage and those who want No Moe coverage. What do you think?

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DNA helps catch killer*

Brian Day will have a great story in Sunday’s paper about how investigators using DNA evidence caught up with a man who killed a Baldwin Park couple 22-years-ago as they slept:

From Brian’s story, which we slugged COLDCASE:

Twenty-two years after a Baldwin Park couple was fatally stabbed by intruders as they slept in their bed, DNA left at the scene pointed to one of their killers.

Martin Talavera, 44, was convicted earlier this month of the stabbing deaths of Sylvester Flood, 74, and his fiance, Peggy Johnson, 61, in their home in the 4800 block of Elizabeth Street on Jan. 10, 1986*, said Deputy District Attorney Stefan Mrakich, who prosecuted the case in court.

Flood was pronounced dead at the scene, and Johnson died 14 months after the incident from injuries determined to be related to the attack, Mrakich said. Johnson was also raped her during the ordeal.

“It was just a horrific, brutal crime,” Mrakich said, adding that Flood’s face was filled with “that horrible gaze of fear” and his hands were still held up in front of him as if to defend himself against his attacker in crime scene photographs.”

I’ll have some crime scene photos posted up here Sunday.

*As you see I’ve changed the date from ’96 to ’86

Brian’s story is now online. Here’s a link.

I posted the first few paragraphs of the story up here as I was editing it Friday night. So there are some structural changes. See the comparison and the photos on the jump.

Continue reading “DNA helps catch killer*” »

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Moe missing

West Covina’s most famous chimp, Moe the Chimp has escaped from Famous Exotics in Devore, according to reports from the San Bernardino Sun. Here’s the top of their story:

Moe is making headlines again.

On Friday afternoon the chimp, featured in several news stories over the years, escaped from Jungle Exotics, a commercial business in the Devore area.

By Saturday wildlife volunteers and county animal control had searched for the animal in the heavily-forested area near the business.

A privately-owned helicopter circled over the area on Saturday.

The chimp has never escaped into the wild before, and would not have access to any food or water.

For the most part, the animal which once lived in West Covina and has been housed at different sanctuaries since the late 1990s, is a friendly and social creature.

But anyone who comes across the chimp is urged to contact local authorities instead of approach him.

I’ve got an email in to Gloria Allred, attorney for Moe’s family St. James and LaDonna Davis of West Covina. I plan to update the post when she writes back.

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Two homicides overnight

CBS 2 KCAL is reporting two homicides overnight. One in West Covina. Victim there remains unidentified.

The other incident was reported in Altadena. I’ve got some emails about the Altadena incident that I’ll post on the jump. Here’s the news story:

LOS ANGELES At least two men were gunned down in Los Angeles Friday night, according to officials.

The first homicide, in West Covina, was reported about 11:20, said West Covina police Lt. Tommy Garcia.

Responding to a “shots fired” call, police found the body of a young man in a yard near 1450 W. Puente Ave.

The victim’s name was withheld pending notification of his family.

Meanwhile, in Altadena, another man was fatally shot about 1:10 a.m.

The victim in that shooting was declared dead at the hospital.

The shooting occured in the 100 block of Figueroa Drive, according to Deputy Rick Pedroza of the Sheriff’s Headquarter’s Bureau.

Detectives are investigating the circumstances that led up to the shooting and searching for a suspect.

As for my emails …



Continue reading “Two homicides overnight” »

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Sheriff’s posse roundup

Photographer Watchara Phomicinda called to say the mounted posse prostitute roundup on Colorado Boulevard made for some great photographs.

A reporter and cameraman from KCBS/KCAL showed up after their assignment editor read about the event here earlier today. Very similar to what happened after we reported on the mythical Pasadena Panty Bandit.

Watchara said it didn’t appear that any arrests were made, but some registered sex offenders living in a East Colorado hot sheet were rousted by deputies on horseback.

“It was great,” Watchara said.

I’ll have some of his photos up here Saturday.

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