PASADENA — Police arrested a motel employee Wednesday after he allegedly groped two women during a breakfast buffet.
Jose Martinez, 35, was booked on suspicion of misdemeanor sexual battery, Pasadena police Sgt. John Luna said.
Martinez was working about 9 a.m. at a motel in the 1200 block of East Colorado Blvd. when the incident occurred, the sergeant said.
He groped the lower bodies of two 29-year-old women, above their clothes, Luna said.
After his arrest, Martinez confessed to the groping, police said.
From the Associated Press:
LONDON — A handgun once owned by gangster Al Capone has sold for almost $110,000 at an auction in London.
Auctioneer Christie’s says the Colt .38 revolver went for $109,080 to an anonymous bidder in the room.
The auction house says the gun was manufactured in 1929, the year of the St. Valentine’s Day Massacre. That’s when seven people were slain during clashes in Chicago between Capone’s gang and his rival George “Bugs” Moran’s mob.
The massacre ended the reign of the North Side Irish gangsters and ushered in decades of Italian organized crime in the city, run by Capone’s South Side crews.
The gun was sold along with a letter from Madeleine Capone Morichetti, the widow of Al Capone’s brother Ralph. She confirmed the gun “previously belonged to and was only used by Al Capone while he was alive.”
ALHAMBRA — Trial was postponed Wednesday for a man accused of killing his ex-girlfriend in 2007, then hiding her body in a trash can in Arcadia.
Isaac Campbell, 36, of San Gabriel was arrested in late 2007 in connection with the slaying of Liya “Jessie” Lu, 31, of San Gabriel.
His murder trial, which was scheduled to begin Wednesday and has already been repeatedly postponed, was continued again, court officials said.
A tentative trial date was scheduled on July 13 in Alhambra Superior Court, officials added.
Campbell and Lu were both nursing students at Pasadena City College when Lu went missing around Aug. 11, 2007, officials said.
Campbell placed Lu’s body in a trash can at the home of a friend in the 1700 block of South Baldwin Avenue in Arcadia, authorities allege. The body was found about a month after Lu went missing.
Detectives arrested Campbell in Minnesota after the discovery of the body.
According to sheriff’s booking records, Campbell is being held in lieu of $1.275 million bail at the Men’s Central Jail in Los Angeles.
NORWALK — Sheriff’s officials arrested one drunken driver, issued 30 tickets and stored or impounded 21 cars during a weekend checkpoint, authorities said.
More than 2,800 vehicles passed through the checkpoint, which was held from 7 p.m. Saturday to 1 a.m. Sunday on Westbound Imperial Highway, just east of the 5 Freeway, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. Josie Woolum said.
Deputies singled out 59 drivers for closer inspection, ultimately arresting one on suspicion of driving under the influence, the lieutenant said.
Thirty tickets were issued for various vehicle code violations, she added, and 21 drivers had their vehicles either stored or impounded.
PASADENA — Police arrested a Pasadena man Friday after he allegedly threatened someone with a gun, then led police on a chase.
Alfred Robateau, 24, was booked on suspicion of assault with a firearm, Pasadena police Lt. Chris Russ said.
Officers received a report about 4 p.m. that a man had become involved in an argument and brandished a handgun in the 1200 block of North Garfield Avenue, the lieutenant said.
Police found a car matching the description driving in the area and short pursuit began, Russ said.
Officers lost site of the fleeing car just as a police helicopter spotted the driver — later identified as Robateau — ditch the vehicle near Peoria Street and Fair Oaks Avenue and run into an apartment complex, police said.
Officers located and arrested Robateau in the complex soon after, Russ said, and a witness pointed out a gun that he had thrown from his car during the pursuit.
According to sheriff’s booking records, he was released from jail Saturday after posting $50,000 bail.
PASADENA — A man was robbed of his iPhone as he walked down the street Friday afternoon, police said.
The victim was walking on Michigan Avenue near Colorado Boulevard about 6 p.m. and listening to music via headphones from his iPhone, “when he felt someone trying to pull it from his hand,” Pasadena police Lt. Chris Russ said.
The pedestrian confronted the thief, there was a brief struggle, and the robber ran of empty-handed with the victim chasing behind, police said.
“The victim was confronted by two additional suspects, and the victim fled from the scene,” Russ said. “The suspects caught up with him and stole his phone.”
One of the robbers was a black man in his 20s, of thin build and a light complexion, police said. He was clean-shaven and wore a white tank top, blue jeans and a diamond earring in his left ear.
Another of the robbers was also black and in his 20s, of heavy build, clean-shaven, wearing an oversized white T-shirt and jeans. No description of the third robber was available.
Russ advised residents to be attentive to their surroundings when walking. If listening to music, he said, use only one earphone so you can hear what’s going on around you.
PASADENA — A fire destroyed a car inside an underground parking structure and sent one person to the hospital with smoke-related injuries, officials said Saturday.
The blaze was reported just after 5 p.m. Friday in an underground parking area at 101 S. Marengo Avenue, Pasadena fire officials said in a written statement.
Firefighters doused the flames with water and kept the fire from spreading to other cars, authorities said.
Smoke then had to be cleared from the structure, and gasoline spilled from the burning car had to be cleaned up.
A resident of the building above where the fire occurred was treated and taken to a hospital after suffering breathing problems apparently related to the smoke, officials said.
The building and parking structure were not damaged. The damage to the car was estimated at $7,500.
WHITTIER — Police arrested a teen and a young man Friday on suspicion of an armed robbery in an unincorporated county area near Whittier, officials said.
A 17-year-old boy and a man in his early 20s whose name were arrested in connection with the 2:40 p.m. robbery in the 11000 block of Inez Street, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Sgt. Chris Mouat said.
A teen was walking when he was approached by the suspects, who brandished a gun and demanded his money, the sergeant said.
Deputies responded and immediately found a teenage suspect at a nearby home, Mouat said. The older suspect was found and arrested in the same neighborhood after a three-hour search.
WHITTIER — Police arrested a Whittier man Friday on suspicion of stabbing another man after a fight broke out on a bus, authorities said.
Ralph Portugal, 45, was booked on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon, Whittier police Lt. Carlos Solorza said. The wounded man, a 21-year-old Whittier resident, was taken to a hospital with wounds that were not initially believed to be life-threatening.
Portugal and the alleged victim became involved in an argument for unknown reasons about 11:20 a.m. while both were passengers on a Montebello Transit bus in front of Whittier College, the lieutenant said.
The argument escalated into a fight, and Portugal pulled a pocket knife with a 4-inch blade, Solorza said.
Police said he then stabbed the victim several times in the chest.
Solorza said the wounded man continued to fight his attacker outside the bus before the two parted ways.
Officers responding to multiple 9-1-1 calls reporting the stabbing found the wounded man walking nearby, and Portugal was located near Penn Street and Comstock Avenue, Solorza said. Portugal had a bloody knife in his possession.
LA PUENTE — Three would-be robbers fled empty-handed Thursday after holding a gun to security guard’s head at a jewelry store, authorities said.
The failed heist was reported about 3:30 p.m. at a jewelry inside a shopping center at 1717 Hacienda Boulevard, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Sgt. Ernie Barbosa said.
Three crooks entered the jewelry store, the sergeant said.
“One hops over the glass counter display and immediately starts rifling through the display cases,” Barbosa said.
One of two female employees screamed, alerting an unarmed security guard from an adjacent business who came to help, officials said.
As he approached, however, he encountered one of the robbers crouching by the door, Barbosa said.
“He placed a gun to the security the guard’s head and threatened to shoot him if he tried anything,” the sergeant said.
The three robbers then fled the store without taking anything and got into an unknown-type, black car which headed southbound on Hacienda Boulevard, Barbosa added. A description of the robbers themselves was not available.