Man and woman jailed after chase from Azusa to Duarte


AZUSA >> A man and woman led police on a pursuit that ended with a crash in Duarte before they were arrested late Friday, police said.
Driver Dennis Ayon,, 36, of Azusa was booked on suspicion of evading police and felony drug possession, Azusa police officials said in a written statement. Passenger Darla Abriel, 30, of Glendora was booked on suspicion of a misdemeanor drug offense and outstanding warrants, according to Azusa police officials and Los Angeles County booking records.
The pursuit began shortly after 8 p.m. after an Azusa police officer tried to stop the car they were riding in for a traffic violation near 5th Street and Dalton Avenue, Azusa police officials said in a written statement.
“The driver failed to stop and led officers on a vehicle pursuit from the City of Azusa through the City of Monrovia and ultimately into the City of Duarte,” according to the statement, “The vehicle lost control and collided with several parked vehicles in the 2000 block of Mountain (Avenue), City of Duarte.”
Both the driver and passenger were treated for apparently minor injuries prior to booking, officials said. Further details regarding he type and amount of drugs allegedly possessed by the suspects was not available.
Information regarding Ayon’s bail amount and initial court appearance was not available Saturday, as he remained hospitalized, officials said. He is already on felony probation under the terms of AB 109, records show.
Abriel was being held in lieu of $45,000 bail pending an arraignment hearing scheduled Monday in the West Covina branch of Los Angeles County Superior Court.

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Classes cancelled Monday at Valley View Elementary School in Duarte; K-rails continue to hold in Fish fire impact area


DUARTE >> Officials cancelled Monday classes at a Duarte elementary school at the center the Fish fire impact area, which was threatened by mudslides and flooding Sunday as a storm dropped inches of rain over the Southland on Sunday afternoon.
School will be cancelled Monday at Valley View Elementary School, 237 Melcanyon Road, according to city and Duarte Unified School District officials.
Mud piled up high alongside roadside K-rails guarding the surrounding neighborhoods, but continued to hold Sunday afternoon, despite a heavy downpour Sunday morning, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Sgt. James Long said.
“So far, everything is holding, and there’s been really very minor mudflow activity,” Duarte spokeswoman Karen Herrera said.
Mandatory evacuations remained in effect for the Fish fire impact area, affecting 180 homes.
•Map: Fish fire impact area
An evacuation center capable of taking in both people and pets has been set up by city and Red Cross officials at the Duarte Community Center, 1600 Huntington Drive. It is scheduled to remain open so long as the city’s Red Alert, and corresponding mandatory evacuation orders, remain in effect.
“Very few” people made us of shelter, Herrera said.
The majority of residents of the affected area chose not to heed evacuation orders, but to shelter in place instead, she said.
Voluntary evacuation orders were also issued for neighborhoods in the Colby fire impact area in Azusa, authorities said.
A Flash Flood Warning was to remain in effect in the area through 6 p.m. Monday, according to the National Weather Service.

STORMphoto

PHOTO by Watchara Phomicinda

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UPDATED: Man killed, another wounded in Azusa shooting


AZUSA >> One man died and another was wounded after they were shot inside a car in Azusa early Sunday morning, authorities said.
Killed was Alexander Salazar, 21, of Azusa, Los Angeles County Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner Investigator Rudy Molano said.
The shooting was reported at 1:22 a.m. in a residential neighborhood in the 600 block of North Alameda Avenue, according to Deputy Lisa Jansen of the Los Angeles County sheriff’s Information Bureau.
Following reports of gunfire heard in the area, deputies found a four-door Lexus sedan had crashed into a parked car, Lt. John Corina of the sheriff’s Homicide Bureau said.
Salazar, a documented member of the Azusa 13 street gang, was shot in the head, he said. Paramedics pronounced him dead at the scene.
The passenger, a 20-year-old Fontana man, was treated for a gunshot wound to his hand.
Further details regarding the circumstances of the shooting, including a suspect description, remained unknown Sunday afternoon, according to the lieutenant. The surviving victim did not appear to be fully cooperating with investigators, and no other eyewitnesses had been found, he added.
Anyone with information can reach the sheriff’s Homicide Bureau, which is assisting Azusa police in the investigation, at 323-890-5500. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.

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$20K reward renewed in 2013 slaying of Azusa man on Altadena horse trail

ALTADENA >> The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday renewed a $20,000 reward in the case of a West Covina man whose body was found four years ago on an Altadena horse trail.
Marcus Anthony Nieto, 26, was pronounced dead at the scene by coroner’s officials on February 16, 2013 after he was discovered unresponsive by two riders near the 3800 block of Canon Boulevard, officials said in a written statement.
He died of “multiple blunt trauma to the head” and the death was ruled a homicide, according to Los Angeles County Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner records.
Investigators said Nieto left his home to visit an acquaintance in Pomona, but may have returned to the Covina/Azusa area at some point before he went missing.
The reward, originally approved by the board in April of 2014, had expired before Supervisor Kathryn Barger’s motion reestablishing it for information leading to the arrest and/or conviction of a suspect or suspects responsible for the murder.
Anyone with information is asked to contact 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.

— Sandra Molina and Brian Day

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Man killed in Azusa police shooting


AZUSA >> Police shot and killed a man in Azusa late Sunday, authorities said.
The fatal officer-involved shooting took place at 11:21 p.m. in a residential neighborhood in the 200 block of Windsong Court, Deputy Jeffrey Gordon of the Los Angeles County sheriff’s Information Bureau said in a written statement.
The suspect, described only as a man, died at the scene, Gordon said.
No further details were available.
The sheriff’s Homicide Bureau is spearheading the investigation.

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Azusa gang member, woman arrested in Covina with stockpile of drugs

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COVINA >> Police jailed an Azusa gang member late Friday after he ran from a traffic stop with large amounts of methamphetamine, cocaine and concentrated cannabis, as well as other people identifying documents, officials said.
Steven Anthony Quintana, 42, of Azusa, who was already on felony probation for previous robbery conviction under the terms of AB 109, was ultimately booked on suspicion of possession of drugs for sales, possession of identity theft-related materials and resisting arrest, according to Covina police officials and Los Angeles County booking records.
Quintana’s passenger, 37-year-old Darlene Denise Martinez, whose hometown was unclear, was booked on suspicion of possession of drugs for sales and possession of identity-theft related materials.
An officer first tried to pull Quintana over for a traffic violation about 6:30 p.m., Covina police Sgt. Antonio Zavala said.
After a delay, Quintana pulled over in the 5300 block of Cedarglen Drive, where he ran from the car, the sergeant said.
A police helicopter which was already overhead directed officers on the ground to Quintana, who was found in the area and arrested without a struggle, Zavala said.
Quintana ditched his jacket while running from police, he said. Inside the jacket, police found 46 grams of methamphetamine, seven grams of cocaine and 32 grams of concentrated cannabis. Inside the car, police also found identifying documents in the names of other people.
Quintana and Martinez were being held in lieu of $50,000 bail each pending their initial court appearances, records show.

BOOKING PHOTOS of Steven Quintana and Darlene Martinez courtesy of the Covina Police Department.

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6-year-old boy struck, critically injured by pickup truck in Azusa


AZUSA >> A 6-year-old boy clung to life at a hospital in “critical-but-stable” condition after being struck by a car while crossing the street with his mother late Thursday, police said.
The incident took place just after 7:40 p.m. in the 700 block of North Vernon Avenue, according to Azusa police Sgt. Robert Landeros.
“The child and his mother attempted to cross the street outside of the crosswalk when the collision occurred,” Landeros said in a written statement. “The driver of the vehicle stopped after the collision and rendered aid to the child.”
The boy suffered serious injuries, including serious head trauma, officials said.
Paramedics rushed the young patient by helicopter to Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center for treatment.
“The child suffered multiple injuries and is in critical but stable condition,” Landeros said. “However, the child is expected to survive.”
The man at the wheel of the involved pickup truck cooperated with investigators, officials said. Intoxicated driving was not suspected to be a factor.
No further details were available Friday morning.
Anyone with information can reach Azusa police at 626-812-3200.

— City News Service contributed to this report

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La Puente woman suspected of DUI after car plummets into San Gabriel River in Azusa

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AZUSA >> Police suspect drunken driving and excessive speed after a car plummeted 100 feet over the side of San Gabriel Canyon Road in Azusa early Thursday, ending up overturned in the San Gabriel River below.
The crash was first reported about 4:05 a.m. in the 2000 block of San Gabriel Canyon Road, Azusa police Sgt. Robert Landeros said in written statement.
A 25-year-old La Puente woman was at the wheel of the 2014 Toyota Corolla when it left the roadway and fell into the river along the Mountain Cove community, he said.
“The solo driver was able to exit her vehicle as it became submerged in the water,” Landeros said. “The driver swam to a nearby embankment and yelled for help.”
A nearby resident heard the woman’s screams and called police. A Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department helicopter and search and rescue team joined in the effort.
Paramedics took the woman to a hospital with injuries described as moderate, according to the sergeant.
“Driving under the influence of alcohol and unsafe speed are both suspected factors in this collision,” Landeros said.
The investigation was ongoing, however the driver was expected to be booked on suspicion of drunken driving, he said.

PHOTO courtesy of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department

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Police seek missing Azusa man

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AZUSA >> Police asked the public’s help Wednesday in finding a 31-year-old man with mental disabilities who went missing from an Azusa group home on Tuesday.
Devaughn Demetrius Lindsey-Ramos left his group home in the 1000 block of E. Alford Street about 9 p.m. Tuesday and did not return, Azusa police Sgt. Terry Smith said in a written statement.
“Devaughn is currently in need of medication and he left his medication at home,” Smith said. “Devaughn is possibly headed to Pomona.”
He is described as black, 5 feet 6 inches tall, 125 pounds, with brown hair and brown eyes. He was last seen wearing a gray hooded sweatshirt, and orange shirt and blue jeans.
Anyone who spots Lindsey-Ramos is asked to contact Azusa police at 626-812-3200.

PHOTO courtesy of the Azusa Police Department

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Azusa man dies after being shot outside his home


AZUSA >> A 30-year-old Azusa man died Wednesday night after an unknown assailant shot him several times outside his home.
Sgt. Marcelo Quintero of the Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau said Paul Espinosa, who was shot in the upper torso, made his way back to the house where he collapsed. He died at the scene.
Detectives have not found the shooter.
The shooting broke out just before 11 p.m. in the 17800 block of E. Newburgh Street, in an unincorporated county area near Azusa.
Espinosa stepped outside for a few minutes and his family heard three to four shots, according to Quintero.
The sergeant said Espinosa entered the house, said he’d been shot and told relatives to call 911. He said Espinosa collapsed on a couch.
Azusa police found him bleeding and unresponsive with gunshot wounds to his chest. Coroner’s spokesman Ed Winter said firefighters pronounced Espinosa dead at the scene at 11:10 p.m.
Investigators are looking for witnesses.
Anyone with information is asked to contact 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.

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