WEST COVINA >> Police are planning a sobriety and driver license checkpoint in West Covina on Friday night, officials said.
The checkpoint will be held from 6 p.m. Friday to 2 a.m. Saturday at an undisclosed location within the city, West Covina police spokesman Rudy Lopez said in a written statement.
Funding for the checkpoint is being provided by a grant from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, through the California Office of Traffic Safety.
ALHAMBRA >> Police arrested an auto burglary suspect and recovered a stolen backpack containing a personal items including the cremated remains of the victim’s father on Tuesday, authorities said.
Officer Zachary McFarland as on patrol Tuesday morning when he noticed a man, who appeared to be transient, carrying two backpacks in the area of Atlantic Boulevard and Mission Road, Alhambra police officials said in a written statement.
The officer approached the man and soon learned he was on probation for robbery and obtained permission to search the backpacks, which contained a laptop computer, documents and other items.
“Additional items and a somewhat unbelievable story from the transient led Officer McFarland to the conclusion that the backpacks may have been stolen. The transient was arrested,” according to the statement.
After working for several hours to determine who the backpacks belonged to, McFarland identified the owner, an area man whose car was broken into the previous night, police said.
“While happy that his computer and work related material were found, the victim was especially concerned about a small box that he had in one of the packs,” according to the statement. The box was recovered along with the other property.
“The reason for the man’s concern for a small box, it contained the cremated ashes of his father. An irreplaceable item that was very dear to the victim’s heart,” the statement continued. “The victim was very appreciative for Officer McFarland’s efforts.”
The suspect’s identity was not available Wednesday.
COVINA >> Deputies have cautioned the public about a suspicious encounter between a man and two 10-year-old girls at Charter Oak Park near Covina on Tuesday.
The girls were playing about 6:45 p.m. in a fenced-in area of the park, 20261 E. Covina Blvd., in an unincorporated county area, when a man approached in a newer-model, silver, four-door sedan with tinted windows and chrome door handles, Alhambra police officials said in a written statement.
“An adult male drove by on the adjacent street and yelled several times for them to, ‘get in the car,” according to the statement. “The vehicle then circled the area once prior to driving away.” The girls immediately reported the incident to adults, who contacted the sheriff’s department.
Deputies were looking into the possibility the suspicious encounter was related to another report of lewd behavior in public received about 20 minutes before the incident at Charter Oak Park,” the statement said. “The sole occupant of the vehicle was engaged in lewd activity not involving children. No other related incidents have been reported to San Dimas Station.”
Officials described the driver of the car as a white man between 30 and 40 years old, with shoulder-length brown hair.
Anyone with information is asked to contact the sheriff’s San Dimas Station at 909-450-2700. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.
GLENDORA >> Coroner’s officials have identified a 58-year-old Glendora man who was fatally struck by an alleged DUI, hit-and-run driver while working under the hood of a car last week.
Brian Paysley succumbed to his injuries at a hospital shortly after the 10:10 a.m. crash on April 13 along Grand Avenue, just north of Arrow Highway, Los Angeles County Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner Assistant Chief of Operations Ed Winter said.
He was working on auto repairs along the side of the road when a Scion xB driven by 29-year-old Mark Stephen Gagliardi of Claremont slammed into the rear of the car Paysley was working on, Glendora police Cpl. Bill Lee said at the time.
Gagliardi fled the scene, but was found and arrested nearby after his damaged car broke down less than half a mile away, Lee said.
Investigators determined Gagliardi was driving while intoxicated and arrested him on suspicion of vehicular manslaughter, felony DUI and hit-and-run, according to the corporal.
According to Los Angeles County booking records, Gagliardi was released from jail pending his initial court appearance after posting $136,000 bail.
SOUTH WHITTIER >> A man carjacked a woman at gunpoint in the carport of a South Whittier apartment complex on Saturday afternoon, officials said.
The crime was reported about 1:55 p.m. in the 12300 block of Clearglen Avenue, in the unincorporated county area, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Sgt. Jason Cunningham said.
A victim, a woman in her 40s, was in the carport when a man approached her, pointed a handgun at her and demanded her car, the sergeant said.
“The victim complied and gave her keys to the suspect,” he said. The carjacker fled in her vehicle.
He was described as a Latino man in his 20s, about 5 feet 6 inches tall, 200 pounds, wearing all-black clothing.
A description of the stolen car was not available Sunday afternoon, Cunningham said. It had not been recovered.
CYPRESS >> A La Mirada woman died and a Whittier man is accused of manslaughter and DUI following a three-car crash in Cypress early Easter Sunday.
Alexis Barragan, 22, died in the 12:40 a.m. crash at Katella Avenue and Valley View Street, according to Orange County coroner’s records.
She was a passenger in a car being driven by 22-year-old Nicholas Sanchez-McCormick of Whittier, Cypress police Sgt. Ken Ramsey said.
“During the investigation, it was determined that the vehicle driven by (Sanchez-McCormick) was traveling westbound on Katella and ran a red light at the intersection of Valley View,” Cypress police officials said in a written statement. “His vehicle collided with two other vehicles, which were traveling north and south on Valley View.”
Paramedics pronounced Barragan dead at the scene.
Three occupants of the other two involved cars were taken to a hospital as a precaution, police said.
Officers determined Sanchez-McCormick was under the influence of alcohol and arrested him on suspicion of vehicular manslaughter and felony drunken driving, Ramsey said.
Sanchez-McCormick already had a pending DUI case at the time of Sunday’s crash, according to Los Angeles County booking records and sheriff’s officials.
He was arrested on Jan. 1 by deputies from the sheriff’s Norwalk Station on suspicion of misdemeanor DUI, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Sgt. Jason Cunningham said.
He was issued a citation following that arrest and released from custody the same day, records show. Formal charges have yet to be filed.
Sanchez-McCormick pleaded “no contest” in 2015 in Los Angeles County Superior Court to a count of driving without a valid license, court records show. A second charge of driving on a suspended license was dismissed.
According to Orange County booking records, Sanchez McCormick was being held in lieu of $100,000 bail pending his initial court appearance, scheduled Tuesday in the Central Jail branch of Orange County Superior Court.
DIAMOND BAR >> A Diamond Bar man died after jumping out of the passenger side of a moving minivan on the 60 Freeway in Diamond Bar late Saturday, authorities said.
The identity of the man was not released Sunday pending notification of family, Los Angeles County Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner Investigator Rudy Molano said. California Highway Patrol officials described him as 40 years old.
The incident took place just after 11 p.m. as the man was riding as a passenger in a 2016 Honda Odyssey on the 60 Freeway, just east of Brea Canyon Road, Officer C. Banuelos of the CHP’s Baldwin Park office said in a written statement.
As the Odyssey was traveling eastbound, for an unknown reason, (the man) opened the right front passenger door and jumped out of the vehicle into traffic lanes,” Banuelos said.
He suffered major blunt force trauma when struck the roadway, officials said. Paramedics pronounced him dead at the scene.
Investigators were looking into the possibility the man had been drinking.
“Alcohol is suspected to be a factor in this incident,” according to Banuelos.
No information was available regarding the driver of the minivan.
The CHP issued a Sig Alert on the eastbound 60 Freeway for about two-and-a-half hours following the incident.
Anyone with information is asked to contact the CHP’s Baldwin Park office at 626-338-1164.
EL MONTE >> A man clung to life Saturday after he was shot while setting up a birthday party for his young daughter at an El Monte park, authorities said.
The victim, described as a man in his 30s, was hospitalized in critical and unstable condition following the shooting, which took place just before 6 a.m. at Baldwin Avenue Mini Park, 3750 Baldwin Ave., El Monte police Lt. Ernie Kramer said.
“He was at the park setting up for a party. He heard a gunshot and saw a suspect running through the park,” the lieutenant said.
The man briefly chased after the shooter before realizing he had been wounded in the back.
Witnesses in the neighborhood reported hearing gunfire just before the victim himself called 911 to report he had been shot.
Paramedics took the man to a hospital for treatment, Kramer said. His condition remained extremely serious after undergoing several surgeries.
The man was alone at the small park setting up for a birthday party for his daughter when the shooting took place, officials said. Family members and guests had not yet arrived.
He collapsed near the front gate of the park, police said. It appeared he was trying to make it to his car.
Detectives from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Homicide Bureau were summoned to take over the investigation due to the life-threatening injuries suffered by the victim, Kramer said.
No further details, including a description of the shooter, were available.
Anyone with information can reach the sheriff’s Homicide Bureau at 323-890-5500. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.
LA HABRA >> Police arrested one man and sought two more after they burglarized a La Habra cell phone store, then led police on a chase that ended in Montebello early Saturday, authorities said.
The incident began about 3:20 a.m. when a security alarm company notified police of a break-in at a Sprint store in the 1300 block of South Beach Boulevard, La Habra police Sgt. Rob Diehl said.
The alarm company reported that the burglars were still inside the store, based on remotely viewed surveillance cameras, police added.
“Officers arrived and observed three suspects in a silver SUV parked to the front,” Diehl said. “As soon as the officers got there, the suspects fled.”
The SUV, later determined to be a rental car, led police on a high-speed chase on surface streets and freeways through Orange and Los Angeles counties, the sergeant said. It ultimately came to a stop along the 605 Freeway in Montebello, where all three suspects ran from the SUV.
Officers captured one of the passenger, but the driver and second passenger were no found, Diehl said.
Police recovered dozens of cell phones, primarily iPhones, from the suspects’ SUV, he said.
The identity of the suspect who was in custody was not released Saturday as officials continued seeking his alleged accomplices, Diel said.
Anyone with information can reach La Habra police at 562-383-4300. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to Orange County Crime Stoppers at 855-847-6227.
PASADENA >> A man leapt to his death from the Colorado Street Bridge in Pasadena on Saturday morning, police said.
Foul play was not suspected in the death, which was being investigated as a suicide, Pasadena police Lt. Jason Clawson said.
Police received a report just after 8 a.m. that someone had witnessed a man jump from the bridge spanning the Arroyo Seco, he said.
The man, estimated to be between 30 and 50, appeared lifeless when police first arrived on scene, Clawson said. Paramedics subsequently pronounced the man dead.