Man sought in connection with Irwindale mail thefts


IRWINDALE >> Police asked the public’s help Saturday in tracking down a man believed connected to a series of mail thefts from five Irwindale businesses late last month.
The thefts occurred Oct. 27 at five businesses in the 4800 block of Fourth Street, Irwindale police Sgt. George Zendejas said in a written statement.
A thief pried open the locked, outdoor mailboxes and took mail, the sergeant said. “Several checks were stolen during the thefts and subsequently cashed at nearby locations.”
Since the Oct. 27 thefts, several incidents of mailbox tampering have been reported in the same area, officials said.
Police released a surveillance camera image of a man taken as he cashed a stolen THEFT2check, as well as a photo of an SUV captured on security cameras near where the mail was stolen.
Anyone who recognizes the suspect or has information regarding the case is asked to contact Detective Jose vargas at 626-430-2290.


PHOTOS courtesy of the Irwindale Police Department.

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Woman interrupts burglary at her Pasadena home, suspect jailed

PASADENA >> A woman arrived home Saturday to find a burglar in her home, police said.
Donald Holden, 20, was arrested in connection with the crime, which was reported about 3:30 p.m. at a home in the 100 block of South Roosevelt Avenue, Pasadena police Lt. John Luna said.
The victim, a 25-year-old woman, found an intruder inside her bedroom, the lieutenant said. The man ran from the home once spotted by the residence.
An officer spotted a man matching the description in the area about 40 minutes later, Luna said. Police arrested the man after the victim identified him as the burglar, and items taken from the home were found in his possession. Holden was booked on suspicion of burglary.
According to county booking records, Holden was being held in lieu of $50,000 bail pending his initial court appearance.

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Parolee accused of burglarizing Pasadena home

PASADENA >> Police jailed a parolee Friday after catching him in the act of an alleged home burglary, authorities said.
Michael Keith Trujillo, 22, of Highland Park, was booked on suspicion of residential burglary following the 10:30 a.m. break-in at a home in the 300 block of North Carmelo Avenue, according to Pasadena police officials and Los Angeles County booking records.
A neighbor called police to report seeing a stranger on his neighbors property, Pasadena police Lt. Art Chute said.
When officers arrived, Trujillo had already forced his way into the home through a rear window.
Police ordered Trujillo out of the home and he surrendered without a struggle, Chute said. He was already in the process of gathering up items inside the home.
According to booking records, Trujillo, who is on parole, was being held without bail pending his initial court appearance.

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Suspect identified in Pasadena auto body shop arson


PASADENA >> DNA evidence links a suspect to the arson of a Pasadena auto body shop last month that caused $375,000 worth of damage, officials announced Thursday.
Jesse Cole Nicholas, 30, was already in jail on unrelated cases when he was linked by DNA Wednesday to the Sept. 27 fire, according to Pasadena fire officials and arrest records.
The 7:20 a.m. blaze badly damaged a rear building used for detailing and prep work at Alliance Auto Body, 826 S. Arroyo Parkway, and destroyed two cars that were parked inside, Pasadena Fire Department spokeswoman Lisa Derderian said.
“Believing that the fire was suspicious in nature, a fire investigator was summoned to the scene,” Pasadena fire officials said in a statement. “The investigator was able to determine that the fire was an intentional act and initiated an arson investigation.”
Surveillance footage from the business shows a man hopping a fence and breaking into cars at Alliance Auto Body hours before the fire ignited, officials said. He then stole a car and fled.
But the burglar returned several hours later, broke into several more vehicles and set fire to a car parked in the rear building, authorities said.
1017_NWS_PSN-L-ARSONSUSPECT2Pasadena fire investigators teamed with Pasadena police detectives and distributed a suspect flyer seeking information. “As a result of viewing the video, (the fire investigator) believed the suspect may possibly be transient and began canvasing the areas of the city frequented by the homeless.”
The fire investigator found a man matching the description at Pasadena’s Central Park on Sept. 29, according to the statement. Police helped arrest the suspect on an outstanding felony warrant as the investigation into the arson continued.
Nicholas received a 60-day jail sentence for the unrelated warrant on Oct. 1 at Los Angeles Superior Court, according to Los Angeles County records. He remained in custody Thursday at the Pitchess Detention Center in Castaic.
Records show he was also sentenced to 10 days for violating the terms of Post-Release Community Supervision stemming from a prior conviction.
The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Crime Lab notified Pasadena investigators Tuesday that DNA collected from one of the burglarized vehicles matched Nicholas, officials said.
A fire investigator interviewed Nicholas in jail Wednesday.
“Although the suspect denied knowledge and involvement in the break-in, auto theft and arson, he did provide the approximate location of the stolen vehicle, which was recovered,” according to the department statement.
Investigators planned to file their case with the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office next week.

PHOTOS courtesy of the Pasadena Fire Department

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Suspect jailed in Pasadena ‘hot prowl’ burglary

PASADENA >> A Pasadena man awoke to fund an intruder in his house and chased him from the home before police arrested the alleged burglar Wednesday, officials said.
Police jailed Gary Jones, 21, of Compton on suspicion of residential burglary following the 10:20 a.m. break-in at a home in the 300 block of South Marengo Avenue, Pasadena police Lt. Ed Calatayud said. Police described the victim as a man in his 30s.
“The victim was sleeping in a bedroom when he was startled by a noise,” the lieutenant said.
Upon investigating the noise, the resident encountered an intruder in his home, he said.
Calatayud said the burglar ran from the home once confronted by the resident. The burglar grabbed a small bag containing dog treats as he fled.
The resident chased the burglar briefly, then called the police, Calatayud said. Officers found Jones nearby and ultimately arrested him in connection with the break-in.
He got into the home through an unlocked, second-floor sliding glass window, Calatayud said.
Jones was being held in lieu of $50,000 bail pending his initial court appearance, according to Los Angeles County booking records.

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Pasadena burglary suspect jailed with help from camera-wielding neighbor

PASADENA >> Police jailed a burglary suspect earlier this week with the help of an alert neighbor armed with a cell phone camera, officials said.
Francisco Ricardo Tafolla, 18, of Pasadena who was already being sought for violating his probation stemming from a previous theft-related conviction, was booked on suspicion of burglary, according to Pasadena police officials and Los Angeles County booking records.
The break-in occurred about 4 a.m. Friday at a house in the 1900 block of East Villa Street, Pasadena police Lt. Jason Clawson said.
A neighborhood resident spotted a man leaving his neighbor’s house with an oversized bag and became suspicious, the lieutenant said. The witnesses snapped a photograph of the man, which was was passed along to police about 7 a.m. once the homeowner confirmed the house had been burglarized.
An officer recognized Tafolla from a previous arrest, Clawson said. Officers soon tracked down the suspect at his Pasadena home.
Electronics and other items allegedly taken from the Villa Street home were recovered, along with, “other evidence,” Clawson said.
The arrest highlights the successful outcomes that occur, “when people are working together to keep their neighborhoods safe,” Clawson said. “If you see something, say something.”
According to county booking records, Tafolla was being held without bail pending his initial court appearance.

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Pasadena police jail Rosemead man on suspicion of burglarizing home improvement stores

PASADENA >> Police arrested a Rosemead man early Sunday after catching him with a van full of items allegedly stolen from Southern California home improvement stores, officials said.
Pablo Armando Valencia, 37, was booked on suspicion of burglary and drug possession following his arrest shortly after midnight in the parking lot of a motel in the 2000 block of E. Colorado Boulevard, Pasadena police Lt. John Luna said.
Officers were patrolling when they noticed Valencia standing next to a “suspicious vehicle”,” he said. A second person was standing near Valencia, but that person was not arrested.
“Upon contact, officers noticed several new objects in the rear of the van the suspects were next to,” Luna said.
Police determined the items had been stolen from several large Southern California home improvement stores, the lieutenant said.
Officials then found further evidence of burglary, as well as some suspected methamphetamine,inside Valencia motel room, Luna said.
No further details were available Sunday.
According to county booking records, Valencia was being held in lieu of $30,000 bail pending his initial court appearance.

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Burglary suspects jailed after neighborhood search in South Pasadena

SOUTH PASADENA >> Police jailed two residential burglary suspects Thursday following an extensive search of a South Pasadena neighborhood, authorities said.
Kenny Franklin, 22, of Lakewood and Michael Ward, 26, of Los Angeles were ultimately arrested following the failed break-in about 1 p.m. at a home in the 800 block of Rollins Street, South Pasadena police Sgt. Matt Petersen said.
A witness called police after hearing a neighbor’s security alarm sounding, then seeing two men running away from the home, the sergeant said.
The two suspects fled down a nearby pathway known as the Snake Trail before emerging on Flores De Oro, Petersen said. Franklin was immediately captured, but Ward continued to run.
With help from other nearby police agencies, South Pasadena police set up a search perimeter to seek the outstanding burglary suspect, Petersen said.
A police dog found and bit Ward about two hours later as he was hiding in a backyard shed in the 1300 block of Meridian Avenue, Petersen said. He was booked into jail after being treated for dog bite injuries.

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Police: Long Beach resident fatally shoots intruder inside home

LONG BEACH >> A Long Beach resident fatally shot an intruder who broke into a home early Sunday morning, in the second fatal shooting of an intruder by a Long Beach resident in three weeks, authorities said.
The break-in and fatal shooting took place shortly before 3 a.m. at a home on 3rd Street, just east of Temple Avenue, Long Beach police Sgt. Megan Zabel said.
Few details were released regarding the incident Sunday as homicide detectives continued investigating the incident.
The alleged intruder, who died at the scene of the shooting, was not identified pending notification of family, Zabel said. Police described him only as a man.
“Officers responded to the 2800 block of East 3rd Street in regards to a burglary in progress where the resident has shot the suspect in the home,” Zabel said.
“Officers arrived along with Long Beach Fire Department paramedics, who pronounced the suspect deceased at the scene,” she said.
There were two adults inside the home at the time of the shooting, Zabel said. Police declined to provide any further description of the shooter or the second person in the home.
Police also released no details regarding the encounter between the shooter and the intruder, including whether the intruder was armed.
The residents had not been arrested Sunday as the investigation continued, Zabel said.
“They were interviewed and released,” she said. “Once the investigation is complete, it will be presented to the district attorney’s office.”
Prosecutors will then determine whether any charges are to be filed, Zabel said.
The residents were not believed to have been injured in the incident.
The shooting comes less than three weeks after another alleged residential burglar was shot by another Long Beach resident July 23 in the 3900 block of Country Club Drive.
Andrea Miller, 28, died after she was shot by 80-year-old Tom Greer, according to Long Beach police and statements Greer made to KNBC.
Miller and her alleged accomplice, 26-year-old Gus Adams, beat Greer when he interrupted their burglary of his home, according to police and Los Angeles County District Attorney’s officials. Greer, who suffered a broken collar bone among other injuries in the incident, said in a television interview that he shot Miller as she was running away, but still considered the shooting self defense.
Miller shouted out that she was pregnant just before she was shot, but a coroner’s investigation found that was not the case.
Adams has been charged with murder, robbery, elder abuse and other crimes in connection with the incident. His mother, 49-year-old Ruby Adams, has also been charged with burglary, robbery and elder abuse for allegedly serving as a lookout during the crime.
Across Los Angeles County in Diamond Bar, a resident shot at an intruder inside his home in the 400 block of N. Del Sol Lane on Friday afternoon, though the burglar was believed to have escaped uninjured, Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials said.

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Resident shoots at burglar in Diamond Bar

DIAMOND BAR >> A homeowner shot at a burglar during a break-in Friday afternoon in Diamond Bar, authorities said.
A man was at home about 1:30 p.m. in the 400 block of N. Del Sol Lane when he heard a smashing noise, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. Frank Rivera said. He soon discovered the noise was created by an intruder bashing his way through the home’s front door.
Investigators suspect the burglar did not realize anyone was home when he forced his way into the house, Rivera said. The burglar and homeowner encountered one another in the living room.
“I think they were both shocked when they saw each other,” the lieutenant said.
The homeowner grabbed a handgun and fires a single shot at the intruder, Rivera said. “He felt his life was in danger.”
The burglar fled, getting into a burgundy Toyota Camry with tinted windows and a waiting driver.
The burglar was not believed to have been struck by the resident’s gunfire, though it could not be ruled out Friday evening, Rivera said. Officials checked area emergency rooms for gunshot victims that may be linked to the crime with no success.
A detailed description of the burglar was not available.

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