LA MIRADA — A La Mirada bank was robbed for the second time this month Friday, and authorities said they suspect the crimes may be related.
A man armed with a knife escaped with an undisclosed amount of cash about 2 p.m. after robbing the Bank of the West at Imperial Boulevard and Valley View Avenue, sheriff’s Lt. Steve Kenny said.
The same bank was also robbed April 2 by a robber with a similar description, he added.
“(Investigators) believe it may be related,” Kenny said.
In Friday’s robbery, a Latino man in his mid-20s entered the bank with a bandana covering his face, brandished a knife and demanded money from a teller, the lieutenant said.
Kenny said deputies were retrieving images of the robber from bank surveillance cameras late Friday.
In the April 2 heist, a masked man with a similar description robbed the same bank branch about 9 a.m., Lt. Mark Wilkins said.
EL MONTE – Police jailed an 80-year-old El Monte man Friday on suspicion of inappropriately touching a young girl, authorities said.
Juan Ramirez was booked on suspicion of child molestation, El Monte police Detective Ralph Batres said.
He was arrested about 11:30 a.m., “after a complaint was filed against Ramirez for inappropriately touching a victim under the age of 12,” Batres said.
The alleged incident took place in the 12100 block of Exline Street, he added.
Police declined to release further details Friday.
Batres said he was being held in lieu of $100,000 bail and was due for arraignment in Pomona Superior Court Tuesday.
MONROVIA — A knife-wielding crook robbed a man Friday in Old Town, police said.
The crime was reported shortly after noon in an alley in the 100 block of West Colorado Boulevard, Monrovia police Lt. Nels Ortlund said.
The victim, a Monrovia man of about 60 years old, was walking down the alley when he was confronted by the robber, who brandished a knife and demanded property from the man, the lieutenant said.
The victim handed over $26 and the robber ran off, said.
Officers searched the area but were unable to find the robber, Ortlund added. He was described as a Latino man with a dark complexion and a bushy mustache. He wore a white T-shirt, black pants and black and white shoes resembling Converse All Star tennis shoes.
The victim was not hurt in the incident, he said.
BALDWIN PARK — Investigators still had little information to work with Friday in the efforts to track down a hit-and-run motorist involved in a crash that killed a Baldwin Park man, California Highway Patrol officials said.
Eliseo Castaneda, 35, of Baldwin Park died at a hospital shortly after Sunday’s 4:45 p.m. crash on the westbound 10 Freeway, just west of Baldwin Park Boulevard, CHP Sgt. John Escobedo said.
He apparently rear-ended a a compact car and was thrown from his motorcycle when a passing SUV struck him and continued driving, the sergeant said.
The hit-and-run vehicle was initially described only as a black SUV with with probable damage to the right front side, and no further information had surfaced Friday, CHP Sgt. Jesse Holguin said.
“Any help we could get from the public would be greatly appreciated,” he said.
Part of the reason a more complete description of the hit-and-run vehicle was not available was that officers received conflicting information from witnesses, Holguin said. Some described the driver as female, other others said the driver was male.
Anyone with information is asked to call the Baldwin Park office of the CHP at 626-338-1164.
WEST VALINDA — Deputies jailed two men Thursday on suspicion of robbing a woman of concert tickets near a convenience store, authorities said.
Alfonso Salazar, 21, of West Valinda, and Juan Casas, 39, of West Valinda were booked on suspicion of armed robbery, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. Hiroshi Yokoyama said.
The crime occurred about 4:20 p.m. in front of a 7-Eleven store at Francisquito and Orange avenues, the lieutenant said.
Salazar and Casas allegedly confronted a 20-year-old woman with a handgun and demanded her concert tickets, Yokoyama said.
After obtaining the tickets, the robbers drove off in a black Ford sedan, he added.
A car matching the description was found in the 13700 block of Shaver Street, Yokoyama said, and Salazar was inside of it. He was arrested without a struggle.
Upon searching Salazar’s home nearby, Yokoyama said deputies found and arrested Casas in connection with the robbery.
The allegedly stolen concert tickets were recovered, he said.
PASADENA — A teenage boy armed with a machete allegedly robbed a man Thursday, authorities said.
The incident occurred about 6:30 p.m. at Howard Street and Garfield Avenue, Pasadena police Lt. Tom Delgado said.
The apparent victim, a man who appeared to be in his 50s, was walking with groceries when the teen confronted him and threatened him with a machete, the lieutenant said.
After turning over an unknown amount of money to the teen, Delgado said, the man continued walking.
Two people saw the alleged robbery and called police, he said.
The teenage suspect was found in the area with a machete hidden in his pants, Delgado said. He was booked on suspicion of armed robbery and was expected to be sent to juvenile hall.
Police were unable to find the apparent victim, Delgado said. Anyone with information is asked to call the Pasadena Police Department.
ARCADIA — Police towed five trucks, placed 11 “out of service” and cited 100 equipment violations Wednesday during a commercial vehicle inspection checkpoint, officials said.
A total of 45 trucks were inspected in the checkpoint, which was held during the early morning hours on Peck Road, just north of Clark Street, Arcadia police said in a written statement.
“The purpose of this type of checkpoint is to conduct spot checks on commercial vehicles travelling on our roadways,” police said.
Though the California Highway Patrol routinely inspects big rigs on the highway and during visits to large companies, according to the statement, many vehicles that travel only on local roadways are not regularly checked.
“Without regular inspections and maintenance, commercial vehicles pose a potential risk to all those on our roadways,” the statement said.
PASADENA — A woman died Wednesday after apparently jumping from the Colorado Street Bridge in Pasadena, police said.
Police received a call from a passing motorist about 1:50 p.m. reporting that a woman had climbed over the guard rails along the bridge, Pasadena police Lt. Tom Pederson said.
“Apparently, just moments before we arrived, she jumped,” the lieutenant said.
Police summoned coroner’s officials to the scene to pick up the body and conduct an investigation, Pederson said.
Wednesday’s incident was the second time in a week that an apparent suicide has been reported at the Colorado Street Bridge.
A passer-by found the body of a 25-year-old Covina man Saturday, who also apparently leapt from the bridge within days of being discovered, police and coroner’s officials said.
Los Angeles County Department of Coroner Assistant Chief of Operations Ed Winter said Wednesday that an autopsy determined Madril died of blunt force injuries and the death was ruled a suicide.
WEST COVINA — A large fire destroyed two townhomes and sent a firefighter to the hospital Tuesday, authorities said.
The firefighter was hospitalized after becoming weak and dizzy while battling the blaze and remained hospitalized for observation Wednesday, West Covina Fire Department Assistant Chief Bart Brewer said.
The fire was reported shortly after 11 a.m. in the 3600 block of South Sequoia Circle, Brewer said.
Firefighters found the building well-involved with fire wen they arrived and worked to keep the blaze from spreading, Brewer said.
“It got quite a head start on us,” he said.
Every available West Covina firefighter was called to help, and the Los Angeles County Fire Department sent firefighters to help as well, Brewer said.
More than 30 firefighters worked to extinguish the fire, he said.
“It took about an hour to really get it under control,” he added.
Two townhomes were destroyed in the fire, Brewer said, and a third suffered smoke damage.