AZUSA — A 16-year-old girl suffered a gunshot wound to the leg in a drive-by shooting early Sunday, authorities said.
The attack took place just after 2:30 a.m. in the 400 block of East 2nd Street, Azusa police said in a written statement.
“According to the victim and eyewitnesses, an SUV — occupied by the shooter — drove westbound on 400 E. Second St. and opened fire on a home and small gathering of people,” according to the police statement.
Several shots were fired before the SUV sped west on 2nd Street, police said. The driver apparently lost control of the vehicle and crashed into two parked cars before continuing north on Dalton Avenue.
When officers arrived at the scene, they learned the 16-year-old gunshot victim had already been taken to a hospital by private vehicle, officials said. She was expected to recover from her injury.
The girl was believed to have been standing in front of the home when she was shot with “at least one more person,” though further details regarding the circumstances of the shooting were not available, Madaloni said.
Investigators believed there was more than one attacker inside the SUV, however they declined to release more specific information regarding the suspects or their vehicle as they continued tracking down clues, the sergeant said.
“Everything’s preliminary right now,” he said, adding that the motive in the shooting had not been determined.
Several parked cars in the neighborhood were struck by errant bullets, officials said.
Though no additional gunshot victims were discovered, “It’s possible there could be other victims who are outstanding,” Madaloni said.
The investigation was ongoing, and anyone with information was asked to contact Azusa police Detective Rob Landeros at 626-812-3200.
A man and woman from Ontario were behind bars Thursday on suspicion of a spree of more than 40 commercial burglaries in Los Angeles, San Bernardino and Orange counties over the past two months, officials said.
Glendora police investigators arrested Andrew Martin, 47, and his girlfriend Gloria Quintero, 46, Wednesday at the Capri Motel in Ontario, Glendora police Lt. Brian Summers said.
They’re accused of break-ins in Glendora, Azusa, Covina, Diamond Bar, La Verne, Claremont, Chino Ontario, San Bernardino and La Palma, Glendora police said in a written statement. And the investigation was ongoing.
“We believe the suspects will be linked to additional burglaries in surrounding cities,” Glendora police Detective Matt Fenner said.
“We haven’t even scratched the surface in Orange County,” Summer added.
The burglaries largely took place in clusters, with several businesses in the same neighborhood being struck in the middle of the night, Summers said.
“The suspects typically used a large rock or other heavy object to break out the front windows of small commercial businesses, such as hair salons and restaurants,” according to the police statement. “The suspects would steal the cash register or rifle through the till for any money left in the register overnight.”
Police began noticing the trend in early march, officials added.
The amounts of money stolen in the crimes was relatively small, and appeared to be overshadowed by the damage the suspects allegedly caused to the businesses’ windows and cash registers, Summers said.
Detectives got a break in the case when the burglars broke into a Covina deli, the lieutenant added.
Police were able to obtain a clear image of Martin and a pickup truck used as a getaway vehicle, and the images were distributed among law enforcement aencies, he said.
“A Glendora patrol officers recognized the male suspect and vehicle from a crime bulletin as a person he had stopped for a traffic violation a week earlier,” according to the police statement.
Officers located Martin and Quintero at the Ontario motel Wednesday and arrested them without a struggle, police said.
According to Los Angeles County booking records, they were being held in lieu of $20,000 bail each and were scheduled to be arraigned Friday in West Covina Superior Court.
PHOTOS of Andrew Martin, 47, and Gloria Quintero, 46, both of Ontario, courtesy of the Glendora Police Department.
AZUSA — A young man died and six others were injured in a four-vehicle wreck in Azusa late Sunday, officials said.
The crash took place shortly after 8 p.m. at Baseline Road and Citrus Avenue.
Those injured were inside three of the vehicles, described as a compact car and two mid-size sedans, according to Battalion Chief Jim Enriquez.
“Our first arriving unit found three vehicles, with victims trapped in two,” he said.
The dead man, who appeared to be in his early 20s, was a passenger in the compact car, Enriquez said. The driver, a 20-year-old man, was flown by helicopter to a trauma center after being freed from the wreckage by firefighters.
There were beer bottles inside the young men’s car, and investigators were looking into the possibility of drunken driving, Azusa police Cpl. Randy Schmidt said.
A 45-year-old woman, a 46-year-old man and a 15-year-old boy inside one of the sedans involved in the crash were all hospitalized with apparently moderate injuries, Enriquez said.
But rescuers rushed the man — who had been riding in the back seat of the sedan — to a hospital by helicopter as a precaution to to the violent nature of the crash, he said. “It took us about 45 minutes to dismantle the vehicle to get to him.”
The second sedan involved in the crash contained a 45-year-old man and a 12-year-old boy, Enriquez said. Both suffered injuries believed to be minor.
The fourth car in the crash sustained minor damage, and no injuries to occupants were reported, according to police and fire officials.
Anyone with information can reach the Azusa Police Department at 626-812-3200.
AZUSA — A 76-year-old Azusa woman with Alzheimer’s who went missing after going for a walk Friday afternoon was found disoriented but safe in Duarte Friday night, authorities said.
Carolyn Davis didn’t return home after leaving for her daily walk to Northside Park about 2 p.m., according to Azusa police Sgt. Randy Schmidt.
Police released a photo of Davis and sought the public’s help in locating her.
Deputies from the sheriff’s Temple Station found her after responding to reports of a possibly drunken trespasser sleeping in a bush at a retirement home in the 1400 block of Santo Domingo Avenue in Duarte, sheriff’s Sgt. Lynette O’Brien said.
The responding deputies realized the woman was the senior reported missing out of Azusa and notified Azusa police, who picked her up and returned her home.
AZUSA — A judge sentenced a Covina man to seven years in state prison this week for shooting another man during an argument at an Azusa barbershop, officials said.
Dustin Juan Trujillo pleaded guilty Wednesday to assault with a deadly weapon, and admitted the sentence-enhancing allegation that her used a semi-automatic firearm in the crime, Los Angeles County District Attorney’s officials said. West Covina Superior Court Jack P. Hunt immediately sentenced him.
The shooting took place about 6:20 p.m. Jan. 10 at a barbershop in the 300 block of North Citrus Avenue, Azusa police officials said.
It stemmed from a personal dispute, investigators said. The victim was wounded in the arm.
After identifying him as a suspect, police worked with family members to persuade Trujillo to turn himself in within hours of the shooting, officials said. He initially faces a charge of attempted murder in connection with the attack.
AZUSA — Police arrested an Azusa man late Thursday for repeatedly pointing a laser at a police helicopter, authorities said.
Thomas Brandley, 20, was booked on suspicion of discharging a laser at an aircraft, Azusa police Sgt. Xavier Torres said in a written statement.
A police helicopter was helping Azusa police with an unrelated call when someone began shining a laser at the aircraft, the sergeant said.
The officers on board maneuvered away from the beam and ordered the person via loudspeaker to stop shining the laser, he said. But the person continued.
The airborne officers were able to determine the beam originated in the 1300 block of Tom O Shanter Avenue, Torres said. Officers on the ground located and arrested Brandley, and also recovered a laser from inside the home where he was found.
The officers on the helicopter were unharmed, police said, however shining a laser at an aircraft creates a hazard as it can temporarily blind pilots, endangering both those on the aircraft and those on the ground.
In addition to being a violation of California law, legislation passed in 2012 makes it a federal offense to shine a laser at an aircraft. Two people have been prosecuted under the federal statute.
AZUSA — Police have announced that a 12-year-old Azusa boy who never returned home after school Friday has been found safe and sound.
The boy’s grandmother reported him missing early Saturday after he failed to come home after school the previous afternoon, Azusa police Cpl. Randy Schmidt said.
But within hours, officials learned the boy had stayed overnight at a friend’s house and was unharmed, Sgt. John Madaloni said.
AZUSA — Good Samaritans captured and held a suspect for police following a knifepoint robbery attempt at a Foothill Boulevard massage parlor earlier this week, authorities said.
Ernesto Delacruz, 26, of Covina, was booked on suspicion robbery, assault with a deadly weapon and battery likely to cause great bodily injury in connection with Monday’s 6:17 p.m. robbery at Royal Massage, in the 500 block of East Foothill Boulevard, Azusa police officials said.
Delacruz entered the massage parlor, posed as a customer and approached a female employee in her 40s, Sgt. Tim Harrington said.
“Delacruz produced a knife and demanded money from the business,” Cpl. Jorge Sandoval said in a written statement. “A short struggle over the knife followed, before Delacruz fled the business.”
The woman chased after Delacruz as he fled, “at which time a neighboring business employee assisted with detaining Delacruz,” Sandoval said. “That neighboring employee sustained moderate facial injuries while attempting to detain Delacruz and was assisted by a second passer-by in doing so until Azusa police officers arrived.”
The employee of the neighboring business, a 28-year-old man, was punched by the suspect as he held the man for police, Harrington said. The other good Samaritan, a 26-year-old man, was not hurt.
A folding knife believed to have been used in the robbery was found at the scene, the sergeant added.
According to county booking records, Delacruz was being held in lieu of $50,000 bail pending his initial court appearance.
AZUSA — Police cited 17 drivers, but made no arrests, during a sobriety checkpoint late Friday.
The checkpoint was held from 7 p.m. to midnight in the 800 block of South Azusa Avenue, Azusa police Cpl. Dean Brewer said in a written statement.
Officers screened 950 of the 1,040 vehicles that passed through the checkpoint.
“We cited 14 motorists for being unlicensed and three for driving on a suspended driver’s license,” Brewer said. “Two vehicles were impounded.”
Funding for the checkpoint was provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
AZUSA – Two bicyclists sexually harassed a 22-year-old woman while she was jogging Wednesday night.
Azusa Police Andy Sutcliffe said the suspects made sexually suggestive comments to the jogger and one even grabbed her.
At 5:37 p.m., he said an Azusa Pacific University student was jogging eastbound in the 1000 block of East Alosta Avenue when she noticed two bicyclists riding toward her.
“As they approached, she heard both men making inappropriate comments about her of a sexual nature,” he said.
As the men rode on either side of the jogger, Sutcliffe said one of the suspects reached out and grabbed the woman. Sutcliffe didn’t say where the victim was touched but said what happened was a sexual battery.
The woman confronted the suspects who continued making the sexual comments as they rode west on Alosta Avenue and out of sight.
One of the suspects was described as a white man in his early 20s with a shaved head. He is 5 feet 10 inches tall, weighs 165 pounds and wore a red checkered Pendleton long-sleeved shirt and blue jeans. He was riding a red beach cruiser-style bicycle.
The other suspect was described as a Latino in his early 20s and 5 feet 10 inches tall. He was wearing a gray-and-green hooded jacket and dark-colored pants. He used a dark colored mountain bike.
Anyone with information on the suspects and the case is asked to call the Azusa Police Department at 626-812-3238.
- Ruby Gonzales