Man who died while driving in Bassett identified

BASSETT — Authorities Sunday released the name of a 63-year-old Commerce man who died while behind the wheel of a car in Bassett Saturday.
Glen Oloane was pronounced dead after he was found inside his car, which had crashed into a cinder block wall on Workman Mill Road, just south of Bark Drive, Los Angeles County fire and coroner’s officials said.
Los Angeles County Fire Department Capt. Marcos Espiritu said the crash itself appeared minor, and that Oloane appeared to have suffered a heart attack before his car struck the wall.

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19-year-old woman wounded in mysterious El Monte shooting

EL MONTE — A young woman was shot and wounded in mysterious and an apparently unprovoked attack while riding in a car early Saturday, authorities said.
The wounded woman, 19, was shot in the shoulder and hospitalized in stable condition, El Monte police Lt. Bob Roach said.
The shooting occurred about 1:30 a.m. at Cogswell Road and Klingerman Street, he said, though police ultimately found the victims in the 12000 block of Elliot Avenue.
Roach said no one reported seeing the shooter or where the shots came from.
“It’s absolutely unknown why this occurred,” he said. “There appears to be no motive.”
The woman was riding as a passenger in a car with a 22-year-old woman and a 22-year-old man when two or three shots rang out, the lieutenant said.
The other two people inside the car were not shot but suffered minor injuries from flying glass fragments, he added.
There was no indication anyone in the car was involved with gangs, Roach said.

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Covina police jaile woman on suspicion of bootlegging DVDs, CDs

COVINA — Police jailed a woman Saturday on suspicion of selling counterfeit DVDs and CDs from a baby stroller, police said.
Maricela Sanchez, 19, of Los Angeles was booked on suspicion of selling counterfeit goods, Covina police Lt. David Povero said.
Someone called police about 3:40 p.m. to report a woman selling DVDs and CDs in a residential neighborhood in the 1100 block of Wanamaker Drive, the lieutenant said.
“She was pushing a baby stroller with no baby,” Povero said. “It contained boxes of CDs DVDs.”
Police determined the items were counterfeit and arrested Sanchez, he said. The stroller contained 238 DVDs and 49 CDs.
The titles being sold included ones not yet available on DVD, Povero added, such as “Up,” “Dear John,” and “Alice in Wonderland.”
According to sheriff’s booking records, Sanchez was being held in lieu of $20,000 bail and is due in West Covina Superior Court Tuesday for arraignment.

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Man dies at the wheel in Bassett

BASSETT — A 64-year-old man apparently suffered a heart attack and died Saturday while driving in Bassett, fire officials said.
The incident was reported about 4 p.m. on Workman Mill Road at Bark Drive, according to California Highway Patrol logs.
Firefighters responded to a report that a van had struck a block wall when they found the driver dead from an apparent heart attack, Los Angeles County Fire Department Capt. Marcos Espiritu.
The collision with the wall didn’t appear to be major, and caused no damage to the wall, he added.
Espiritu added that the driver was the only person inside the van.

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San Marino man allegedly stabs police dog during standoff

SAN MARINO — Officials released the name Saturday of a San Marino man who allegedly stabbed a police dog and set his house on fire during a standoff with authorities.
David Pohung Liu, 45, lived at the home where the standoff occurred Friday in the 500 block of Los Arboles Lane, San Marino police said in a written statement.
Police responded to a burglar alarm shortly before 5 p.m. at the home when they encountered Liu in the doorway, San Marino police Lt. Steve Johnson said.
“(Liu) was in possession of a large knife and a gun,” the police statement said. “He told the officers to shoot him.”
Liu then went into his house where he remained for about five hours, police said.
SWAT officers from the Foothill Special Enforcement Team, which is made up of officers from police agencies throughout the area, surrounded the home while a crisis negotiator tried to talk to Liu via telephone, Johnson said. Liu refused repeated orders to surrender.
When police sent an Irwindale Police Department dog into the house, Liu allegedly slashed it across the head and muzzle, Irwindale police Sgt. Richard Breceda said. Officers were able to call the injured dog back out of the home.
A short time later, Liu set fire to his home, the San Marino police statement said.
“(Officers) used pepper ball guns and foam projectiles against Liu, who finally surrendered to the officers,” according to the statement.
Liu remained hospitalized Saturday for treatment of burns to his face and hands and smoke inhalation, police added.
A motive for Liu’s alleged behavior was not released.
The dog, a Belgian Malinois named “Rik,” was expected to be okay Saturday after receiving medical treatment, Breceda said.
“There’s apparently no permanent injuries,” he said, and the dog was resting at home with his handler.
Rik has been the Irwindale Police Department’s K-9 for about four years, Breceda added.
Johnson said Liu is expected to be booked on suspicion of charges including assaulting a police dog, obstructing police and brandishing weapons.

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Apparent gang members wound teen in Pico Rivera shooting

PICO RIVERA — A teenage boy was shot and wounded Friday in Pico Rivera, officials said.
The shooting occurred about 6:50 p.m. on Passons Boulevard near Telegraph Road, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Sgt. John Adams said.
The wounded teen, estimated to be 16 or 17, was shot in the leg and is expected to survive, the sergeant said.
He was walking with his girlfriend when a white, 4-door vehicle — possible a Chevrolet Impala — passed by, Adams said.
The car turned around and came back before the two men inside got out and approached the victim, he said. One of them was armed with a handgun.
Some gang-related remarks were shouted before the gunman opened fire at the teen as he was running away, Adams said. The attackers then fled.
A woman was driving the wounded teen to the hospital when she spotted a sheriff’s deputy and flagged him down for help, he said.
Officials described the attackers only as Latino men in their early 20s.

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Union Pacific worker struck, killed by Metrolink train


INDUSTRY — A Union Pacific employee died Saturday when his pickup truck was struck by a Metrolink commuter train, authorities said.
The crash occurred about 9:30 a.m. near the intersection of Valley Boulevard and Temple Avenue, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. Pete Cacheiro said.
The Union Pacific employee was initially described only as a 56-year-old man pending notification of his family, Los Angeles County Department of Coroner Investigator Jim Blacklock said.
He was pronounced dead at the scene despite rescuers’ efforts to perform CPR, officials said. Three passengers on the commuter train suffered minor injuries.
The investigation was in its early stages Saturday afternoon, but the lieutenant said it appeared that the crossing signals and arms were working properly.
“It seems like he was trying to get around the train crossing,” Cacheiro said.
“The train pushed the truck approximately 300 yards before it came to a stop,” he added.
The force of the impact was extreme, and the truck driver apparently died on impact, Los Angeles County Fire Department Capt. Marcos Espiritu said.
“The truck was literally totalled,” he said.
Espiritu said two people from the commuter train were hospitalized after complaining of neck and back pain, and a third was hospitalized after reporting feeling ill.
Union Pacific spokesman Aaron Hunt said officials were still working to determine what the pickup truck was doing on the tracks when it was struck. He did not know if the employee was stopped and working on the tracks or merely passing through.
“We don’t know a lot about the circumstances,” he said. “We’re all just really saddened by it. We’re investigating exactly what happened.”
A set of Union Pacific tracks runs parallel to the Metrolink tracks, Hunt added.
Train 354, which departed Los Angeles at 9 a.m. en route to San Bernardino, had 138 passengers, two engineers and two sheriff’s deputies on board, Metrolink spokeswoman Angie Starr said. The engineers were subcontracted through the company Connex Railroad.
The passengers were delayed for several hours until a Metrolink bus picked them up and took them to their final destination.
Starr added that the train did not derail in the crash.
The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, Union Pacific, Metrolink and the Federal Railroad Administration are all looking into the crash, Starr said.

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Suspicious death, triple-stabbing reported in El Monte

Two unrelated incidents kept El Monte police busy Thursday:

EL MONTE — Police and sheriff’s officials are investigating the discovery of a woman’s body in El Monte late Thursday, officials said.
Few details were initially released about the investigation.
The body was found about 5:30 p.m. in the 3700 block of Peck Road, Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Deputy Ed Hernandez said.
No information was available on how the woman may have died.
Detectives from the Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau are assisting the El Monte Police Department in the investigation.

EL MONTE — Three men were stabbed Thursday during a fight at Zamora Park, police said.
Officers responded about 9:15 p.m. to a call of about 10 people fighting at the park, 3820 Penn Mar Avenue, El Monte police Sgt. Richard Luna said.
They found three men suffering from stab wounds at the park, he said.
All three men were hospitalized with injuries that were not believed to be life-threatening, the sergeant said.
Details were slow in coming because the wounded men appeared to have been drinking and were not fully cooperating with investigators, he added.
No suspect information was available.

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Vagos motorcycle gang investigated in connection with booby traps at Hemet police station

From the Associated Press:

RIVERSIDE — Authorities are investigating whether a motorcycle gang rigged a Southern California police building with booby traps after becoming angry when police monitored the funeral of a member.
Hemet police spokesman Lt. Duane Wisehart said Thursday it was one of several possible motives being considered regarding the attacks.
“They are definitely one of the suspects,” Wisehart said. “It’s coincidental at minimum.”
California Attorney General Jerry Brown and other officials announced a $200,000 reward for help finding whoever set the booby traps.
“Somebody out there is trying to kill one of our police officers,” Hemet Police Chief Richard Dana said. “The only reason they haven’t killed an officer yet is because we’ve been observant enough to see devices.”
Authorities said about 30 members of the Vagos, California’s largest motorcycle gang, were arrested Wednesday as part of a crackdown in Riverside and Shasta counties in California, Arizona, Nevada and Utah.
About 100 members of the Vagos gang attended the Dec. 29 funeral at a church across the street from the anti-gang unit’s headquarters in Hemet, authorities said.
Officers monitored the memorial but did not attend the service. Some of the Vagos members were questioned or followed as they left town.
“They were there, we were there,” said Riverside County sheriff’s Capt. Walter Meyer, who oversees the regional gang task force. “Is there information that could indicate it was possibly them? Absolutely.”
Meyer, however, said members of other gangs had not been ruled out as suspects.
“Obviously we have angered somebody,” he said.
Two days after the Vagos funeral, someone drilled a hole in the roof of the police building and diverted a natural gas line from a heater, filling the space with flammable gas. The trap was discovered before anyone was hurt.
Last month, a contraption rigged to a security gate at the building sent a bullet whizzing past an officer’s head. Nobody was hurt in that attack or another incident when an unspecified, dangerous device was found near an officer’s car.
Dana said several other booby trap attacks were being investigated, but he declined to discuss details.
Meyer said there are about 200 Vagos members in Riverside County.
The gang specializes in methamphetamine sales, identity theft and violence, he said.
Hemet is located in Riverside County’s San Jacinto Valley and has a population of about 75,000 people.

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“Golden Years Bandit” sought in connection with Rosemead, Alhambra bank robberies

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The same man is suspected of robbing two Valley Boulevard Bank of America branches in Rosemead and Alhambra in the past two months, FBI officials said Thursday.
The bank robberies tied to the bandit occurred Wendesday in Rosemead and Jan. 23 in Alhambra, FBI spokeswoman Laura Eimiller said.
The robber is a white man of large build with grey hair and a grey mustache who appears to be in his 50s or 60s, Eimiller said.
“They’re calling him the “Golden Years Bandit,” she said.
“In both cases, he used a type-written note that was handed to the teller,” she added.
The notes demanded large bills and threatened violence if the teller did not comply, Eimiller said, though no weapons have been seen during the heists.
The most recent robbery occurred at a Bank of America branch in Rosemead, 8856 East Valley Boulevard, according to sheriff’s and FBI officials.
After using a note to rob a teller, the bandit was last seen fleeing south on Ivar Avenue in a older-model, beige van, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. Tom McNeal said.
Witnesses said there may have been another person in the van, though they could five no description.
Eimiller said the note in Wednesday robbery in Rosemead threatened that if anyone followed the robber, the robber’s partner would shoot him.
It was unclear Thursday whether or not the man was working with an accomplice, she said.
Just under two months earlier, the same man is suspected in a similar robbery at the Alhambra Bank of America branch at 444. E Valley Boulevard, Eimiller said.

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In that crime, no getaway vehicle was seen, Alhambra police Detective Tai Seki said.
In both cases, the robber passed his demand note and received the cash through bullet-proof glass partitions separating customers from bank employees known as “bandit barriers,” bank surveillance photos provided by the FBI show.
In both robberies, officials declined to release the amount of money stolen. No injuries were reported in either incident.

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