ALHAMBRA — Coroner’s officials Saturday released the identity of a man shot to death by Alhambra police in the lobby of the police station after allegedly brandishing a large kitchen knife.
Tony Nim, 35, of Alhambra died at the scene of Friday’s officer-involved shooting, Los Angeles County Department of Coroner Investigator Kristy McCracken said.
Nim showed up in the lobby of the Alhambra Police Department, 211 S. First St., shortly before the fatal shooting, which took place about 7:30 a.m., Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials said.
He was clutching a large backpack and appeared incoherent, Lt. Dave Coleman of the Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau said. Five officers tried to speak to him in several languages, however he would not respond to them.
Nim then pulled a large kitchen knife, which Coleman described as a foot long or larger, from his backpack. Three officers opened fire, fatally wounding Nim.
The names of the involved officers were not released Saturday.
Detectives from the Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau are handling the investigation, and anyone with information was asked to contact the bureau at 323-890-5500.
Alhambra police are seeking a possible carjacking victim after arresting four burglary suspects earlier this week, officials said.
The incident, part of which was captured by a police car’s dashboard camera, began about 11 a.m. Tuesday when officers responded to a report of a residential break-in in the 500 block of West Ramona Road, Alhambra police officials said in a written statement.
Four suspects were jailed on suspicion of burglary in connection with the incident, however police were hoping to track down a motorist who was possibly carjacked by one of the suspects, but left the scene before police could speak with him, Alhambra police Sgt. Jerry Johnson said.
The four suspects fled in a car before patrol officers arrived, however they were spotted and followed by a Pasadena Police Department helicopter, Johnson said.
With the helicopter-based officers watching, the fleeing vehicle drove to the area of Del Mar Avenue and Valley Boulevard, “where they exited the car and the four suspects fled in four different directions,” Johnson said.
One of the fleeing suspects — later identified as 18-year-old Donald Trotter of Los Angeles — got into the passenger seat of a blue or gray car occupied by an older Asian man, the sergeant said.
The vehicle began driving, however it was not clear Sunday whether the driver willingly gave the young man a ride without realizing he was fleeing from police, or was ordered to drive by the suspect, which would bring an additional charge of carjacking.
As a dashboard video camera rolled, a responding Alhambra police officer was heading toward the area when he spotted the blue-gray vehicle, officials said.
The burglary suspect exited the car and jumped into a nearby wash, injuring himself in the process, Johnson said.
“He fell about 30 feet and broke his ankle pretty badly,” he said. The suspect was quickly taken into custody, as were the other three.
Meanwhile, the driver of the blue-gray car also exited the vehicle and began pointing police toward the suspect, authorities added.
“The male Asian then left the scene before officers could interview him,” according to the police statement.
The older man was not suspected of participating in the burglary, police added, but officers wanted to talk to him to determined whether he was the victim of carjacking.
“He was either duped, or a victim. Either way, we’d like to know,” Johnson said.
In addition to Trotter, police arrested Steve Gainer, 29, of Paramount; Morgan Gardner, 19, of Downey; and a 17-year-old Los Angeles boy, Johnson said. All were booked on suspicion of burglary as the investigation into potential additional charges continued.
According to county booking records, Gardner was released from jail Tuesday on $50,000 bail pending her initial court appearance, while Gainer was released Thursday after posting $56,000 bail. Trotter was hospitalized for treatment of his ankle injury prior to booking.
Anyone with information was asked to contact Alhambra police Detective Corey Fukumoto at 626-308-4845.
VIDEO courtesy of the Alhambra Police Department
Police shot at, but did not hit, a suspect in an armed convenience store robbery before arresting him at San Marino High School early Sunday, officials said.
William Bolczak, 42, a transient from the Hemet area, was ultimately booked on suspicion of robbery and possession of prescription painkillers, Alhambra police Sgt. Eddie Rodriguez said.
The incident began about 11:20 p.m. Saturday when police responded to a robbery alarm at 7-Eleven, 1111 N. Garfield Ave., Alhambra police Sgt. Jerry Johnson said in a written statement.
Bolczak was armed with a knife during the robbery, Rodriguez said.
Moments later, a witness called police to report he had seen the robbery occur and was following the suspect as he drove east on Huntington Drive, Johnson said. With the information provided by the witness, officers found the suspect near San Marino High School, 2701 Huntington Drive.
“As the officers approached, the suspect threatened officers and made furtive movements toward his waistband,” Johnson said. “An officer-involved shooting then occurred.”
The alleged robber then ran onto the high school campus, police said. He was arrested following a search at 6:35 a.m.
The suspect was not wounded in the shooting, Rodriguez said. He did not know whether the knife used in the robbery had been recovered.
According to county booking records, Bolczak was being held in lieu of $65,000 bail pending a scheduled arraignment Wednesday in Alhambra Superior Court.
ALHAMBRA – A man walked on the eastbound San Bernardino (10) freeway, jumped a wall and was fatally struck by a commuter train Friday night, authorities said.
Aaron Russell Warren, 35, died at the scene of the collision, Los Angeles County Department of Coroner Investigator Rudy Molano said. His city of residence was not clear Saturday.
Alhambra Police Lt. Gabriel Ponce said the California Highway Patrol was notified before 7:15 p.m. that someone was walking on the eastbound lanes of the 10 Freeway near Fremont Avenue.
As CHP officers were responding, Ponce said the officers received information that the person jumped a wall into the center area where the railroad tracks are.
“They get there and noticed the train was stopped,” Ponce said.
He said the officers walked the tracks and found the pedestrian. Alhambra firefighters pronounced the man dead at the scene.
The man was hit by a westbound Metrolink train 333, headed from San Bernardino to Union Station in Los Angeles, according to Metrolink officials. Officials created a “bus bridge” to transport passengers between El Monte and Los Angeles as train service was disrupted through the area due to the investigation.
An autopsy was pending to determine Warren’s officials cause of death, Molano said.
Officials responded to a similar report of a man acting strangely on Foothill (210) Freeway in Pasadena about three hours prior to the fatal collision in Alhambra, however he was not found, according to Pasadena police and California Highway Patrol officials.
Officers were summoned to the 210 Freeway near Lake Avenue shortly after 4 p.m. by reports of a man jumping between the train platform that runs along the center of the freeway to the roadway, Pasadena police Lt. Jason Clawson said.
It was unclear if the man from the 210 Freeway incident was the same man later struck on the tracks along the 10 Freeway.
ALHAMBRA — A woman was hospitalized in an intensive care unit after being struck by a car while crossing Huntington Drive early Saturday, police said.
The woman, estimated to be in her 40s or 50s, was crossing Huntington at Alhambra Road within a marked crosswalk about 8:50 a.m. when she was struck, Alhambra police Sgt. E. Elizalde said.
The cause of the major-injury collision remained under investigation, however the driver — a man estimated to be in his 40s — remained at the scene and cooperated with investigators, the sergeant said.
He was driving a passenger car northbound on Huntington when his car struck the woman, Elizalde said.
Police shut down the intersection for more than six hours, but reopened about 3:15 p.m., he added.
ALHAMBRA — A La Puente man suffered minor injuries and caused a small power outage after crashing a car into a street light, power pole and electrical transformer, authorities said.
The crash was first reported about 5:16 a.m. on Atlantic Boulevard, just south of Commonwealth Avenue, Alhambra police Sgt. Esther Rodriguez said.
Officers responded to a solo-vehicle crash when they discovered the extensive damage, she said.
The driver, a 23-year-old man, suffered apparently minor injuries and was taken to a hospital for observation.
The damage to the electrical equipment created a small outage in the area, according to police and Southern California Edison.
Twenty-six customer remained without power early Saturday afternoon, but were expected to have their power restored by 3 p.m., according to SCE.
Police closed down Atlantic Boulevard between Commonwealth Avenue and Mission Road as repairs were made.
ALHAMBRA — Police are seeking two men who carried out a robbery Wednesday at a Valley Boulevard Bank.
The suspects, initially described only as two black men wearing bandannas over their faces, entered the Preferred Bank, 325 E. Valley Blvd., just before 11:20 a.m., according to Alhambra police Sgt. Jerry Johnson.
“They jumped the counter and demanded money from the bank tellers,” he said.
No weapons displayed during the robbery, and no injuries were reported.
They were last seen fleeing on foot.
The amount of cash stolen in the robbery was not clear.
SOUTH PASADENA — An Alhambra man allegedly led police on an intoxicated, slow-speed chase through South Pasadena and Pasadena late Friday and early Saturday before finally surrendering, authorities said.
Tim Neal Morgan, 35, was released from jail with a citation early Saturday after being booked on suspicion of driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol and misdemeanor evading police, South Pasadena police Sgt. Tony Abdalla said.
The pursuit began about 11:45 p.m. when an officer patrolling in the 300 block of Garfield Avenue, which has had recent issues with burglaries and auto thefts, spotted Morgan sitting in a parked 1999 Ford Explorer and thought him suspicious, the sergeant said.
As the officer approached Morgan, he began driving away in the SUV with his headlights off, Abdalla said.
The officer tried to pull the Explorer over, but Morgan continued driving, he said.
“It was a slow-speed pursuit in the area of 20 to 30 mph, with the suspect stopping at red lights and stop signs,” Abdalla said.
After leading officers on a 50-minute chase on South Pasadena and Pasadena surface streets, Morgan pulled over and surrendered to police just inside the Alhambra city limit on Huntington Drive near Garfield Avenue, police said.
ALHAMBRA — A suitcase found on the side of the road Wednesday led authorities to block off Garfield Avenue and shut down the Garfield Avenue offramp to the 10 Freeway for a little over an hour.
Alhambra Police Sgt. Edward Rodriguez said the sheriff’s bomb squad X-rayed the suitcase and found it was empty.
Police got a call shortly after 5 p.m. about a suspicious package on Garfield Avenue.
Rodriguez said Alhambra firefighters were driving by, saw the suitcase and reported it to police.
Police notified the sheriff’s bomb squad.
- Ruby Gonzales
Detectives are looking for additional victims of an Alhambra man who allegedly scammed people using newspaper and Internet ads.
Kevin Hu was arrested Oct. 16 on suspicion of grand theft. Police said the charges were related to a Chinese newspaper fraud scheme.
“Mr. Hu uses a ruse to obtain a victim’s bank account information while discussing an employment opportunity,” Sgt. Jerry Johnson said in a statement.
Hu makes it appear to the victim that he deposited money into his or her account, according to Johnson.
He said the deposits are later found to be fraudulent.
The victim is later told to withdraw from the account and give the money to the suspect.
Hu was known to meet potential victims via newspaper and Internet ads and at coffee houses throughout the San Gabriel Valley, Johnson said.
Anyone who believes they have been a victim of the scam or who has any information on the case is asked to call Detective John Lee at the Alhambra Police Department 626-570-5158.
- Ruby Gonzales