SANTA FE SPRINGS — Police are seeking two robbers who stole a laptop computer from a man in Santa Fe Springs early Wednesday.
The crime occurred about 6:15 a.m. at an apartment complex in the 8100 block of Broadway Avenue, Whittier police officials said in a written statement.
The victim was sitting in front of the apartment complex when two men approached, fought with him and wrestled his laptop away, police said.
Police described the robbers as two Latino men with shaved heads wearing white T-shirts and black shorts. One weighed about 150 pounds, and the other was about 5 feet 10 inches tall and about 180 pounds.
They were last spotted fleeing into the apartment complex, according to the statement. Police searched the area but did not find the robbers.
Anyone with information is asked to call the Whittier Police Department.
AZUSA — Two men died Sunday after a gunbattle in an unincorporated neighborhood near Azusa, authorities said.
The names of the dead men, who sheriff’s officials described as 30 and 27 years old, were not released.
The shooting was reported about 6:20 p.m. on Banewell Avenue, just north of Arrow Highway.
The 30-year-old man had just stepped out of his home when he was confronted by the younger man, Lt. David Coleman of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau said.
“The two were involved in an argument,” he said, adding that the younger man “pulled out a handgun and shot” the older man.
Family members of the wounded man were driving him to a hospital when responding police officers and sheriff’s deputies stopped the car at Enid Avenue and Arrow Highway, Coleman said.
Paramedics were summoned, and the 30-year-old man was pronounced dead, investigators said.
As officials searched the area, they found the suspected gunman, also suffering from a gunshot wound, in the driver’s seat of a Mercury sedan, which was still near the scene of the original shooting. A handgun was recovered from his car.
The younger man was taken to Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center, where he died just after 8 p.m., authorities said.
“We don’t know how he was shot,” Coleman said.
The older man may have returned fire in self-defense, or another unknown person might have shot the younger man, he said.
A second gun was recovered, but Coleman declined to say exactly where it was found.
A motive in the shooting remained under investigation, he added.
Juan Enriquez, 56, who lives nearby, said he was two blocks away when he heard what sounded like eight or nine gunshots in rapid succession.
When he drove toward the shots to see what had happened, he said he found police and sheriff’s deputies swarming the area.
Both Enid and Banewell avenues remained closed Sunday night as homicide detectives continues their investigation.
PHOTO by staff photographer Watchara Phomicinda
Two separate “suspicious” brush fires slowed freeway traffic in San Dimas and Glendora Sunday but caused no injuries and prompted no evacuations, authorities said.
They were about two miles apart and ignited within half an hour of each other.
“Timing is suspicious, and being very close,” Los Angeles County Fire Department Battalion Chief Vince Pea said. “That’s why it’s under investigation.”
Firefighters responded to the first fire, which was actually two blazes, about 11:50 a.m. along the 57 Freeway near Arrow Highway in San Dimas, Los Angeles County Fire Department Dispatch Supervisor Clyde Taylor said.
“They had two acres on the west side of the freeway and a quarter-acre on the east side of the freeway,” she said.
Pea said the smaller fire on the east side of the freeway “might have just been spotting from the initial fire (on the west side of the freeway), but still, it’s kind of suspicious.”
No obvious cause was found Sunday, he added, though it remained under investigation.
About 75 firefighters doused the blaze from both ground and air, Taylor said, and extinguished it within 30 minutes.
The Arrow Highway onramps to the southbound 57 Freeway were closed due to the fire Sunday afternoon, along with the Arrow Highway offramp of the northbound 57 Freeway, but all lanes and ramps were re-opened before 2 p.m., according to California Highway Patrol logs.
Just minutes after firefighters extinguished the brush fire in San Dimas, Taylor said, another was reported about 12:20 p.m. in Glendora along the 210 Freeway at Grand Avenue.
The second blaze, which burned on the south side of the freeway, was extinguished just before 1 p.m., she added.
The fire burned within 50 or 75 yards of homes in the 1200 block of Concord Lane, though no evacuations were necessary, Glendora police Lt. Joe Ward said.
There was a clearance of brush between the homes and the fire, he said, however nervous residents kept a close eye on the fire from their yards, and police advised them to be vigilant.
The investigation was ongoing, but there was “no obvious accidental cause that I know of at this time,” Ward said.
The close proximity and timeframe of the brush fires also caused investigators to take a close look, he added.
“That, in itself, is suspicious,” Ward said.
The two right lanes of the eastbound 210 Freeway were shut down Sunday afternoon as firefighters continued “mopping up” the fire, officials said.
TEMPLE CITY — Sheriff’s officials and worried family members asked the public’s help Saturday in finding a missing 73-year-old Temple City man who suffers from dementia.
Fidel Medina Hernandez was last seen walking in the area of Kauffman Avenue and Las Tunas Drive about 5:30 p.m. Friday, sheriff’s officials said in a written statement.
Hernandez is described as Filipino, about 5 feet 2 inches tall and about 120 pounds, officials said. He has black hair and black eyes.
He was last seen wearing a beige T-shirt, blue jeans and white slippers.
Anyone with information is asked to call the Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau, Missing Person’s Detail at (323) 890-5500.
PHOTO of Fidel Hernandez comes courtesy of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
ARCADIA — Police arrested a man Saturday morning suspected of beating his brother to death in the Arcadia apartment they both lived in, authorities said.
Michael Kelly, 44, was booked on suspicion of killing his 47-year-old brother Brian Kelly, whose body was found about 5:20 p.m. Wednesday inside their apartment in the 800 block of Fairview Avenue, Arcadia police Lt. Paul Foley said in a written statement.
Police had been seeking Michael Kelly as a suspect in the killing when family members tipped investigators off as to his whereabouts, Foley said.
“Family members of the wanted suspect Michael Thomas Kelly contacted the Arcadia Police Department and advised that Michael Kelly was at a local hospital,” the lieutenant said.
Officers found Michael Kelly being treated for a minor medical issue at Huntington Hospital in Pasadena and arrested him on suspicion of murder just after midnight Saturday, Detective Steve Turner said.
A family member arrived at the apartment and discovered Brian Kelly unconscious and called police, the detective said.
Police responded and found the body of Brian Kelly, who had apparently bludgeoned to death, Arcadia police Lt. Larry Goodman said.
The investigation led officers to suspect Michael Kelly in the killing and issue an arrest warrant for him, however he was not found until early Saturday.
A woman who identified herself as the Kellys’ mother did not wish to comment Saturday.
Nearby neighbors said they were not home when the incident occurred or declined to comment.
A motive in the alleged killing was not clear Saturday, Turner said.
It’s believed that Michael Kelly attacked his brother with a “blunt instrument of some sort,” Turner said, though investigators had not determined exactly what the suspected murder weapon was.
Turner said he suspected the killing took place the same day the body was discovered, however an exact timeframe wasn’t known.
Los Angeles County Department of Coroner Lt. David Smith said Brian Kelly died of “cranial cerebral trauma.”
“He was struck multiple times in the head,” he said.
According to sheriff’s booking records, Michael Kelly was being held in lieu of $1 million bail and was due for arraignment Tuesday in Pasadena Superior Court.
Wednesday’s slaying was the first homicide reported in the City of Arcadia in more than two years, Sgt. Dan Crowther said, though killings have been recorded in nearby unincorporated county areas.
PHOTO of Michael Kelly courtesy of the Arcadia Police Department
COVINA — An anonymous good Samaritan turned in a cash-filled wallet she found to Covina police Friday, authorities said.
The woman, who did not leave her name, came into the lobby of the Covina Police Department, 444 N. Citrus Avenue, about 5:20 p.m., Covina police Sgt. Trevor Gaumer said.
She told officers she found the wallet in West Covina, he said.
Police discovered more than $600 in the wallet, along with a driver’s license, the sergeant said.
Officers visited the address listed on the driver’s license but found the wallet’s owner no longer lived there, Gaumer said.
Police continued seeking the wallet’s owner late Friday.
As seen here in Ruby Gonzales’ article in the Whittier Daily News, Whittier police have released startling footage of a failed robbery at a Santa Fe Springs medical marijuana dispensary on Aug. 10. The video shows a good view of the robbers, as well as the security guard struggling with the armed intruders.
SANTA FE SPRINGS — A man posed as a customer before robbing a Santa Fe Springs restaurant at gunpoint late Thursday, police said.
The crime took place about 8:10 p.m. at Thai Star Cuisine, 13128 Telegraph Road, Whittier police officials said in a written statement.
The robber first gave a waitress a note saying that he wanted to place an order, but then pulled a handgun and demanded money.
The gunman ordered an employee to empty the cash from a register into a bag, officials said.
Police said the robber ordered the employee to the ground before fleeing.
He was described as a white man, about 200 pounds, with blue eyes, police said. He wore a black polo shirt, khaki pants and a gray hat.
Anyone with information is asked to call the Whittier Police Department.
ARCAIDA — Police asked the public’s help Friday in finding a man suspected of beating his brother to death inside an Arcadia apartment.
Police officers responded to a report of an unconscious person about 5:20 p.m. Wednesday in the 800 block of Fairview Avenue when they found the body of Brian Kelly, 47, Arcadia police Lt. Larry Goodman said in a written statement.
“Preliminary investigation revealed the victim had been bludgeoned,” Goodman said.
“Evidence collected during the course of the investigation implicated the victim’s younger brother, Michael (Kelly), as a possible suspect,” the lieutenant said. “Michael left the scene prior to the arrival of police and has not been apprehended.”
A felony warrant has been issued for the arrest of Michael Kelly, 44, he said.
If spotted, police advise the public not to approach Michael Kelly, but to call 9-1-1 immediately.
PHOTO of Michael Kelly comes courtesy of the Arcadia Police Department.
COVINA — Police jailed a self-proclaimed member of a tagging crew early Thursday on suspicion of scrawling graffiti on top of a business, authorities said.
Christopher Mason, 19, of Covina was booked on suspicion of felony vandalism, Covina police Sgt. Trevor Gaumer said.
An employee called police just before midnight Wednesday to report hearing footsteps on the roof of a business in the 200 block of East Badillo Street, Gaumer said.
Officers spotted the suspect, later identified as Mason, but he fled into a nearby neighborhood.
He was arrested during a search of the area and admitted to writing graffiti on top of the business, Gaumer said. “He was proud of his work.”
According to sheriff’s booking records, Mason was being held in lieu of $10,000 bail and was due for arraignment Monday in West Covina Superior Court.