Even after the smoke of Independence Day fireworks clears, law enforcement agencies throughout Los Angeles County will continue holding checkpoints and increased patrols to combat intoxicated driving over the holiday weekend, officials said.
California Highway Patrol officers are planning a checkpoint Friday evening at an undisclosed location within the unincorporated county area east of Pasadena, CHP officials said in a written statement.
Arcadia police, joined by other officers from a multi-agency anti-DUI task force known collectively as Avoid the 100, are planning a checkpoint Saturday evening at an undisclosed location within Arcadia.
In addition to the checkpoints, extra officers will be on the lookout of intoxicated motorists during the CHP’s “Maximum Enforcement Period,” beginning at 6 p.m. Friday and running through midnight Monday.
Anyone who sees an intoxicated driver on the road is asked to report it by calling 9-1-1.
GLENDORA — A Glendora man suffered injuries and is accused of drunken driving after crashing his car while fleeing from police early Saturday, officials said.
Cory Killam, 19, was taken to a hospital where he was listed in stable condition following the crash, which took place about 12:50 a.m. on Haltern Avenue near Center Avenue, Glendora police Sgt. James De Mond said.
Officers responded to the 400 block of East Mauna Loa Avenue in response to a call reporting people drinking near a parked car as a party was going on nearby, the sergeant said.
Officers arrived and approached Killam as he sat in his Honda sedan, but he drove away, he said, leading police on a chase for about two blocks before crashing into a parked car and a wall.
Paramedics took Killam to a hospital for treatment of injuries including a cut to his head, De Mond said.
Upon his release from the hospital, he was expected to be booked on suspicion of drunken driving and evading police.
PASADENA — Police plan to check motorists for sobriety, as well as valid driver licenses, during checkpoint this weekend.
The checkpoint will take place from 7 p.m. Friday to 3 a.m. Saturday at an undisclosed location within Pasadena, Pasadena police officials said in a written statement.
It’s being funded by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
AZUSA — Police screened more than 1,000 cars that passed through an Azusa Avenue sobriety and driver license checkpoint late Saturday, yielding two unlicensed drivers but no intoxicated ones, officials said.
The checkpoint was was held beginning at 7 a.m. in the 800 block of South Azusa Avenue, just north of Arrow Highway, Azusa police Sgt. Andy Sutcliffe said.
Officers screened 1,029 of the 1,123 motorists who passed through the checkpoint, he said.
One driver was cited for driving without a license, officers cited and impounded the car of another driver for both being unlicensed and vehicle code violations approaching the checkpoint.
Several drivers were given field sobriety tests, but all passed, Sutcliffe said.
WALNUT — A Chino man suffered major injuries and is suspected of drunken driving after rear-ending a big rig on the 60 Freeway, which then fled the scene early Saturday, authorities said.
Christopher Oviedo, 20, was arrested on suspicion of drunken driving and hospitalized in stable condition following the 6 a.m. crash on the westbound 60 Freeway, just east of Fairway Drive, California Highway Patrol Officer Adam Christopher said in a written statement.
He was driving a 2000 Jeep Cherokee at an unknown speed in the No. 3 lane prior to the crash, the officer said. A big rig was traveling ahead of Oviedo in the No. 4 lane.
“For an unknown reason, Mr. Oviedo turned his car to the right and entered the No. 4 lane where it collided with the rear of the big rig,” Christopher said.
The Jeep spun out of control and ended up crashing into the metal guardrail along the north side of the freeway, he said. He became trapped in the vehicle and had to be freed from the wreckage by Los Angeles County firefighters.
Oviedo, who was not wearing a seat belt, suffered “major facial injuries,” in the crash.
A description of the big rig was not available.
Witnesses were encouraged to contact the Baldwin Park office of the CHP during normal business hours at 626-338-1164. After hours, the CHP can be reached at 323-982-4900.
AZUSA — Police plan to screen motorists for sobriety and valid driver licenses during a checkpoint Saturday, officials said.
The checkpoint will be held during the evening hours at an undisclosed location within Azusa, Azusa police Cpl. Dean Brewer said in a written statement.
“The primary purpose of the checkpoint will be to detect and arrest intoxicated drivers, but license violations will also be enforced,” Brewer said.
Saturday’s operation is part of law enforcement efforts throughout the state to beef up DUI enforcement through the summer months, he added.
A former actor and motorcycle champion and his wife have filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Caltrans, a contractor, the California Highway Patrol and the alleged drunken driver who drove through a freeway closure and fatally struck their son as he was performing construction work last year in Baldwin Park, an attorney for the family said Wednesday.
Connor McDermott Penhall, 21, died at the scene of the April 4, 2012, crash on the westbound 10 Freeway at Francisquito Avenue, according to officials and attorney Jeff Roberts of the Orange County-based Roberts Law firm, who is representing Penhall’s parents Bruce and Laurie Penhall.
Connor Penhall was working for Colorado-based Caltrans contractor Flatiron Construction Corp. when he was struck, officials said.
Tatsuhiko Sakamoto, 39, of Arcadia is awaiting trial on charges of second-degree murder, gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, drunken driving causing injury and driving with a blood-alcohol level above .08, Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office spokeswoman Jane Robison said.
PASADENA — Police are planning to check drivers for sobriety and valid driver licenses at a checkpoint Saturday, authorities said.
The checkpoint is scheduled for 7 p.m. Friday through 3 a.m. Saturday at an undisclosed location with Pasadena, Pasadena police Lt. Pete Hettema said in a written statement.
More than 10,000 people died nationwide due to DUI-related crashes in 2011, the most recent year for which statistics were available, according to the statement. Statewide, drunken driving-related crashes killed 774 people.
“Over the course of the past three years, DUI collisions have claimed four lives and resulted in 64 injury crashes harming 90 of our friends and neighbors,” Police Chief Phillip Sanchez said.
The checkpoint is being funded by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
As always, anyone who sees an intoxicated driver is asked to report it by calling 9-1-1.
WHITTIER — Police screened 1,415 drivers during a checkpoint late Friday and early Saturday, netting 12 unlicensed drivers, two drivers with suspended licenses and 12 citations, but no intoxicated motorists, officials said.
The checkpoint was held from 7:30 p.m. Friday to 3 a.m. Saturday on westbound Whittier Boulevard, just west of Mills Avenue, Whittier police Sgt. Rob Hanson said.
Two cars were impounded for 30 days because the drivers’ licenses had been suspended, the sergeant said. An additional 12 people were cited for being unlicensed, but their vehicles were all picked up by licensed drivers.
Officers issued 12 tickets for various other violations, Hanson added.
Four drivers were given field sobriety tests during the checkpoint, but none were ultimately arrested on suspicion of intoxicated driving.
PASADENA — Police Wednesday arrested a 48-year-old man on suspicion of gross vehicular manslaughter in connection with a March crash that killed a 37-year-old man as he was pulling out of his driveway, officials announced Thursday.
Officers arrested Kimson James Wright about 2:20 p.m. at his Pasadena home after toxicology reports confirmed he was under the influence of alcohol at the time of the crash, according to Pasadena police officials and Los Angeles County booking records.
The fatal crash occurred 8 p.m. March 16 in the 600 block of North Hill Avenue, near Villa Street, Pasadena police Lt. Ed Calatayud said at the time.
Killed in the crash was Jose Daniel Moreno, Los Angeles County coroner’s officials said.
The arrest came following “extensive investigation” into the circumstances surrounding the crash, Pasadena police Lt. Pete Hettema said. “Toxicology reports indicate that alcohol was a factor in the tragic collision.”
“Wright was driving his 2004 Mecedes southbound on Hill Avenue when it struck a 2003 Toyota Matrix,” Hettema said.
Moreno, who was behind the wheel of the Toyota, was pulling out of his residential driveway when struck, officials said.
After being freed from the wreckage by firefighters, Moreno was taken to a hospital where he died from his injuries.
Wright was treated for minor injuries following the crash.
Wright was released from jail Thursday after posting $100,000 bail pending his initial court appearance, records show.