El Monte man arrested following Arcadia shoe robbery

ARCADIA >> A man who brandished a knife in an attempt to steal woman’s athletic shoes from an Arcadia department store Saturday found police officers waiting for him when he arrived home in El Monte, officials said.
Cuong Van Tran, 43, was booked on suspicion of robbery following the crime, reported about 4 p.m. at a JCPenney store at the Westfield Santa Anita shopping mall, 400 S. Baldwin Ave., according to Arcadia police officials and Los Angeles County booking records.
Store security spotted Tran trying to steal Nike women’s athletic shoes and tried to detain him, Arcadia police Sgt. John Bonomo said.
“(Tran) brandished a knife. That’s when security stepped back,” the sergeant said. Tran dropped the shoes — valued at about $400 — and fled, but security officers were able to take down the license plate number of his car.
Arcadia and El Monte officers headed to a home in the 3000 block of Sastre Avenue in El Monte that was listed in the vehicle’s registration, Bonomo said.
“The car actually showed up while we were down there,” he said. Officers arrested Tran without a struggle.
According to county booking records, Tran was being held in lieu of $100,000 bail pending a scheduled arraignment Tuesday in Pasadena Superior Court.

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Police make 3 DUI arrests at El Monte checkpoint

EL MONTE >> Three people are accused of intoxicated driving following an overnight checkpoint in El Monte, police said Sunday.
The checkpoint was held from 7:30 p.m. Saturday to 3 a.m. Sunday at Ramona Boulevard and Durfee Avenue, El Monte police Sgt. Jimmie Pitts said in a written statement.
A total of 1,692 vehicles passed through the checkpoint, Pitts said.
Officers arrested three people on suspicion of DUI, and another person was taken to jail for an outstanding felony warrant, Pitts said.
Twenty-one tickets were issued to unlicensed drivers or drivers with no licenses.

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Clerk pepper sprayed during Pasadena robbery

PASADENA >> A robber pepper-sprayed a cashier during a late-night heist Friday along Foothill Boulevard in Pasadena, police said.
The crime took place about 11:20 p.m. at a business in the 2800 block of East Foothill Boulevard, just east of Daisy Avenue, Pasadena police Lt. John Mercado said.
The robber entered the store and demanded money from the cash business’ cash register, he said.
“The clerk initially refused. “The suspect sprayed him with pepper spray,” the lieutenant said.
Police said the victim then opened the register, and the robber fled with an undetermined amount of cash. He was last seen running north along Daisy Avenue.
Officials described the suspect as a Latino man in his 20s, with a light complexion, of about 5 feet 9 inches tall. He wore a black baseball cap with white lettering on the front, a black short-sleeve shirt, gray shorts and gray gloves.
Mercado said the victim, an El Monte man in his 20s, suffered irritation from the pepper spray but declined to be taken to a hospital.

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El Monte police plan pedestrian safety crackdown

EL MONTE >> Police in El Monte are planning to field extra officers Monday to in a traffic crackdown aimed at improving safety for pedestrians and bicyclists.
The Bike & Pedestrian Safety Enforcement Operation will take place Monday throughout the city, El Monte police officials said in a written statement.
The campaign will focus on areas where auto collisions involving bicyclists and pedestrian tend to occur, police said.
Officers will be on the lookout for violations committed by motorists, pedestrians and cyclists that can lead to injury collisions.
Over the past three years, police in El Monte have investigated 305 crashes involving pedestrians or bicyclists involving injury or death, officials said.
Funding for Monday’s campaign is being provided by a grant from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, through the California Office of Traffic Safety.

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UPDATED: El Monte rape suspect arrested after neighborhood search; also sought for Fresno County murder


EL MONTE >> Police arrested an alleged rapist also sought in connection with the murder of a Fresno County woman Friday after a neighborhood search that lasted about four hours, officials said.
Kaleo Kealoha Schreiner, 21, of Tracy, was ultimately arrested for rape, possession of a loaded gun in public and resisting police, El Monte police Sgt. Richard Luna said in a written statement.
Police first received a report a woman had been raped about 5:10 a.m. in a residential neighborhood in the 4100 block of Tyler Avenue, the sergeant said. The attacker was reported to still be at the scene of the crime and armed with a handgun.
Police spotted a man matching the suspect description running in the 3800 block of Tyler Avenue and set up a search perimeter, Luna said. West Covina and Arcadia police joined in the search, along with a Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department helicopter.
A police K-9 found Schreiner hiding behind a garage in the 3800 block of Esmeralda Ave., officials said.
“The canine bit Schreiner, who resisted the canine and ignored officer’s commands to comply with the arrest,” Luna said. “A bean bag was deployed on Schreiner, who then complied, and was taken into custody.”
Police found a loaded handgun in the area where Schreiner had been hiding, Luna added.
Schreiner has been sought by the Fresno County Sheriff’s Office for more than two weeks as a suspect in the slaying of Megan Troen, 20, of Tracy, whose body was discovered July 30 in the California Aqueduct, near W. Nees Avenue and the 5 Freeway in the Firebaugh area, Fresno County sheriff’s officials said in a written statement.
Troen had left her home with Schreiner, an acquaintance of several years, July 20 and was never seen again. Investigators said Troen had a diminished mental capacity.
In the days and weeks that followed, Fresno sheriff’s homicide detectives identified Schreiner as a suspect in the slaying and issued a warrant for his arrent.
Officials took Schreiner suspect to a hospital for treatment prior to booking him into jail, he said.

PHOTO of Kaleo Schreiner courtesy of the Fresno County Sheriff’s Office

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UPDATED: Man fatally stabbed in El Monte; possible suspect detained

EL MONTE >> A man died after a “minor” argument escalated into a stabbing in a residential El Monte neighborhood late Wednesday, authorities said.
The fatal stabbing was firs reported at 8:43 p.m. in the 3400 block of Belcroft Avenue, just north of Exline Street, Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials said in a written statement.
“When homicide detectives arrived, they learned the victim was confronted by the suspect, and a minor verbal altercation ensued,” according to the statement. “The suspect then stabbed the victim and fled the scene.”
Paramedics took the wounded man to a hospital, where he succumbed to his injuries.
Investigators held a “possible suspect” for questioning at the El Monte Police Department, the sheriff’s department statement said.
No further details were released.
Detectives from the Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau are assisting El Monte police with the investigation.
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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West Covina police arrest El Monte gang member following car chase

WEST COVINA >> An El Monte gang member led West Covina police on a chase early Saturday before crashing into a brick wall, officials said.
Manuel Reyes, 36, was jailed following the pursuit, which kicked off just before 1 a.m., West Covina police Lt. Dennis Patton said. He was already on Post-Release Community Supervision under AB109 guidelines following a previous criminal conviction.
Officers tried to pull over a car for not having license plates in the area of Pacific Avenue and the 10 Freeway, but the car failed to stop, Patton said.
The driver, later identified as Reyes, led officers on a pursuit to El Monte, then backtracked into Industry before crashing into a brick wall at Valley Boulevard and California Avenue, the lieutenant said.
Reyes through a laptop computer and several other items from the car during the chase, he said. Investigators were still working to determine whether the items were stolen.
The suspect was taken to a hospital for treatment of non-life-threatening injuries prior to being booked into jail on suspicion of crimes including evading police and destruction of evidence, Patton said.

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El Monte robbery suspects arrested after chase

EL MONTE >> Police, aided by two K-9s, arrested two El Monte robbery suspects who fled into the San Gabriel Riverbed after leading officers on a chase in a stolen car late Friday, authorities said.
Freddie Huato, 26, and Julian Gutierrez, 24, were booked on suspicion of robbery following their 10 p.m. arrest in the riverbed near in South El Monte, according to El Monte police Lt. Ben Lowry and Los Angeles County booking records. Their cities of residence were not available.
Huato was being held in lieu of $100,000 bail at the El Monte Police Department’s jail, records show.
Gutierrez was hospitalized in an intensive care unit Saturday for treatment of injuries suffered prior to or during his arrest, Lowry said. It was unclear if the injury, described as a possible cut to the femoral artery, was suffered as Gutierrez fled through the riverbed or when he was ultimately apprehended by a police dog.
The series of events began about 6:30 p.m. when the suspects robbed a man and woman as they stood in front of their home in the 9700 block of Cortada Street in El Monte, Lowry said. After demanding property from the man and woman at gunpoint, the robbers fled the area in a car. A check of the car’s license plate indicated it had been reported stolen.
Officers spotted the car a short time later driving in the north end of the city, Lowry said. The suspects led police on chase for about eight minutes before abandoning the stolen car near Thienes Avenue and Parkway Drive in South El Monte.
After the suspects refused orders to surrender, two West Covina Police Department K-9s were sent in after them, Lowry said. Both were quickly found and arrested with the help of the dogs.

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El Monte woman, brother accused of kidnapping woman’s son from father in Baldwin Park

BALDWIN PARK >> Police arrested a woman and her brother on suspicion of kidnapping and other crimes after the siblings snatched the woman’s toddler son from the home of the boy’s father in Baldwin Park Friday, officials said.
Elizabeth Arias, 25, and Anthony Arias, 22, both of Baldwin Park, were ultimately jailed on suspicion of kidnapping, burglary and domestic violence, Baldwin Park police Lt. Chris Kuberry said.
The incident began about 8:30 a.m. when the brother and sister went to the father’s home in the 14800 block of Central Avenue and forced their way inside, the lieutenant said.
“The suspects became involved in a physical altercation with the father,” Kuberry said. “(Elizabeth Arias) kicked open a bedroom door and took the baby.” The woman and her brother then left in a black SUV.
Detectives found and arrested Anthony Arias in El Monte about 12:20 p.m., Kuberry said. When asked where the toddler was, “He was not cooperative.”
Investigators spotted Elizabeth Arias driving in El Monte about 4:30 p.m. and pulled her over, he said. Police found the boy, unharmed, inside the vehicle and arrested his mother.
There was no legal custody arrangement between the boy’s parents, Kuberry said.

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Motorcycle safety crackdown planned Friday in El Monte

EL MONTE >> The police department will be conducting a specialized Motorcycle Safety Enforcement Operation on Friday in an effort to lower deaths and injuries, officials announced.
Extra officers will be on duty patrolling areas frequented by motorcyclists and where motorcycle crashes occur, looking for violations made by drivers and riders alike that can lead to motorcycle crashes, El Monte police Sgt. Jimmie Pitts said in a statement.
“Last year, two motorcyclists lost their lives in collisions in our city; as well as eight who suffered serious injuries” El Monte police Chief David Reynoso said in a statement. “We all need to be more aware of motorcyclists in order to save lives and promote public safety in our community.”
Drivers are reminded to signal when changing lanes, check mirrors and blind spots for motorcycles and leave more distance when following a motorcycle. Motorcyclists are reminded to wear proper safety gear, obey traffic laws and to ride defensively.
For more information on motorcycle safety, go to www.nhtsa.gov/Safety/Motorcycles.
– Melissa Masatani
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