GLENDORA – Firefighters put out a massive house fire and found a body inside the charred residence late Thursday, officials said.
The body was believed to be that of a woman in her late-70s who lived with her husband in the home in the 900 block of East Cypress Avenue with her husband.
But she had not been officially identified Friday, Los Angeles County Department of Coroner Assistant Chief of Operations Ed Winter said.
Authorities did not deem the fire suspicious.
“At this point, there is no evidence of suspicious circumstances,” Glendora police Sgt. Mike Randazzo said.
Los Angeles County Fire Department arson investigators suspected smoking materials may have sparked the fire, however an officials cause would likely not be determined until next week, Glendora police Sgt. Marty Amayo said.
The fire broke out at 11:09 p.m.
Police responding to 9-1-1 calls found a man in his 80s outside the house, Randazzo said.
“He told us that he believed his wife was still inside the house,” he said.
Due to the smoke and flames, Randazzo said the officers couldn’t get inside the house.
The fire was knocked down at 11:47 p.m., Pickett said. Firefighters then discovered the body.
“She was towards the back door of the house,” Randazzo said.
The fire appeared to have initiated in a family room toward the rear of the home, Amayo said.
Glendora police and arson investigators from the Los Angeles County Fire Department are investigating the fire.
Pickett said the fire department’s investigators are called in whenever there is a fatality in a fire.
But as of Friday, Amayo said, “It seems like it was just a tragic accident.”
- Brian Day and Ruby Gonzales
GLENDORA — Foul play was not initially suspected Sunday after a man’s body was found inside a car in a shopping center parking lot, authorities said.
The body of the man, initially described as a Glendora resident in his 40s, was discovered about 11:15 a.m. in the parking lot of the Diamond Ridge Shopping Center in the 1300 block of West Gladstone Avenue, Glendora police Lt. Rob Lamborghini said.
The man had gone missing and worried family members went looking for him when they spotted his car and called police, the lieutenant said. Responding officers found the body inside.
An official cause of death was under investigation by the Los Angeles County Department of Coroner, Lamborghini said, however the death appeared to be natural, and foul play was not suspected.
The body appeared to have been there for several days, he said.
A man and woman were behind bars Thursday on suspicion of pepper-spraying and robbing a man of a laptop computer in Covina after responding to a Craigslist add, police said.
Tremarri Evans, 21, of Glendora was arrested Thursday morning , Covina police Sgt. Jim McDonough said. His alleged accomplice, 20-year-old Melanie Blanks of Azusa, was arrested Wednesday.
The robbery took place about 8:30 p.m. May 28 in a residential neighborhood in the 200 block of East Navilla Place, police said.
The victim, a Hacienda Heights man in his early 30s, had arranged to meet with the suspects to sell a laptop computer he had advertised for sale on Craigslist, McDonough said.
After Evans and Blanks arrived at the meeting place in a vehicle to meet the victim, “The male suspect exited the vehicle and pepper-sprayed the victim in the face,” McDonough said. The men struggled over the computer before the robber ultimately managed to pull it away and fled along with the woman.
While following up on the case, Detective Anthony Zavala identified Blanks as a suspect in the crime, McDonough said. She was arrested Wednesday after being involved in a minor hti-and-run crash in Azusa.
Continued investigation led police to serve a search warrant early Thursday at Evans home on Cedarwood Avenue, just south of Foothill Boulevard, McDonough said. He was arrested there without a struggle.
Evans and Blanks were both booked on suspicion of robbery, the sergeant said. One of them admitted taking part in the robbery, though he declined to say which one.
The laptop had not been found, and was believed to have been sold by the suspects.
According to county booking records, the suspects were being held in lieu of $100,000 bail each pending their initial court appearances.
GLENDORA – Police arrested a Glendora man Friday after two girls discovered him inside a park bathroom with his pants down, authorities said.
Alexander Estrada, 21, was booked on suspicion of lewd acts in public, child annoyance and battery following the incident, which took place about 1:40 p.m. at Finkbiner Park, 160 N. Wabash Avenue, Glendora police Lt. Larry Lamborghini said.
Two girls of about 11 years old entered the women’s bathroom and found Estrada inside with his pants down and his genitals exposed, the lieutenant said.
They girls exited the bathroom and told their father, who was at the park with them, what they had seen, Lamborghini said.
A bystander who realized what was happening tried to detain the suspect — later identified as Estrada — and a scuffle ensued, he said. Estrada managed to escape. The bystander suffered no serious injuries.
Responding officers found Estrada nearby and arrested him, Lamborghini said.
Police Wednesday arrested a man and woman from Ontario in connection with the armed robbery of a woman in the parking lot of a Glendora Sam’s Club store earlier this week, officials said.
James Reveles, 28, and his girlfriend Brittney Sloan, 26, were booked on suspicion of robbery following their arrest late Wednesday at an apartment complex near Haven Avenue and Riverside Drive in Ontario, according to Glendora police Lt. Brian Summers.
They’re accused of robbing a woman Saturday afternoon in the parking lot of Sam’s Club, at Gladstone Street and Lone Hill Avenue, police said.
A 68-year-old woman had just finished shopping and was walking through the store’s parking lot when she was approached by a man, Summers said.
“The suspect demanded her purse and produced a firearm, and when she refused to turn it over, forcible ripped it off her arm,” the lieutenant said.
The robber fled into a waiting getaway car, he added. “An alert witness heard the victim screaming and was able to obtain the license plate of the suspect vehicle.”
Detectives found the black Acura sedan involved in the robbery Wednesday night at the Ontario apartment complex, officials said. Police watched until they saw a man who matched the description of the robber get into the car, at which point they arrested him.
Sloan, the registered owner of the car, was found and arrested at a nearby apartment complex, Summers said.
“Detectives recovered a handgun and some of the victim’s credic cards from a hidden compartment in the suspect vehicle,” he said.
According to county booking records, Reveles was being held in lieu of $215,000 bail, while Sloan was being held in lieu of $50,000 bail. Both were scheduled to be arraigned Friday in West Covina Superior Court.
PHTOOS of James Reveles and Brittney Sloan courtesy of the Glendora Police Department.
GLENDORA — A woman lost her purse to an armed robber Saturday in a store parking lot Saturday afternoon, police said.
The woman was walking through the parking lot outside of Sam’s Club, at Lone Hill Avenue and Gladstone Street, when whe was approached by a man armed with a handgun, Glendora police Lt. Scott Strong said.
The man first demanded the woman’s purse, but when she refused to hand it over, he grabbed it from her, the sergeant said. The woman was not hurt.
The suspect, initially described only as a white man between 20 and 25 years old, fled the scene in a black Acura, police said.
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.
POMONA – Police arrested two San Gabriel Valley men Saturday on suspicion of operating a chop shop in Pomona and seized stolen property including a stolen handgun, authorities said.
Gabriel Mejia, 33, of Covina and Hijinio Arroyo, 37, of Glendora were each being held in lieu of $100,000 bail Sunday at the Pomona Police Department’s jail, according to Pomona police and Los Angeles County booking records.
Officers acting on a tip from a confidential informant discovered the alleged chop shop about 1:45 p.m. at 1124 Price Street, Pomona police officials said in a written statement.
“When they arrived, several male subjects fled from the building,” according to the police statement. One attempted to flee police by climbing onto the building’s roof.
Officers detained two of the men — later identified as Mejia and Arroyo — then obtained consent to search the building, police said.
Inside, officers found several vehicles being dismantled and car parts scattered throughout the building, officials said. Three of the cars were determined to have been stolen.
In addition to the stolen vehicles and parts, officers also recovered a handgun that had been reported stolen, the police statement said.
According to county booking records, Mejia and Arroyo were scheduled to appear for arraignment Tuesday in Pomona Superior Court.
A West Covina man is accused of cultivation of marijuana after authorities discovered about 400 plants growing inside two business suites which investigators said were a front for the pot-growing operation.
Jose Angel Marquez, 29, was booked on suspicion of cultivation of marijuana following his arrest, which took place just after midnight, according to Glendora police and Los Angeles County booking records.
Officers carrying out a narcotics investigation spotted Marquez driving away from the nondescript business suites late Wednesday and pulled him over, Glendora police Lt. Brian Summers said.
Officers found a small amount of marijuana in his possession, but returned to the adjacent businesses a short time later with a search warrant, the lieutenant said.
“Over 400 marijuana plants in various stages of maturity were recovered, along with other materials used to cultivate the plants,” Police said in the written statement.
Had the plants all been allowed to mature, the value of the marijuana could be as high as $350,000, Summer said.
“The investigation revealed Marquez was using the business suites as a front for marijuana cultivation,” according to the police statement.
Officials were also summoned to the scene to look into potential code violations or hazards at the businesses, police added.
According to county booking records, Marquez was released from jail Thursday morning pending his initial court appearance after posting $100,000 bail.
PHOTOS courtesy of the Arcadia Police Department
GLENDORA — Police jailed a Glendora man Thursday after he became involved in a tug-of-war with a store manager over a drill set he was trying to steal, officials said.
Brandon Weinzril, 21, was booked on suspicion of strong-arm robbery and commercial burglary following the 11:50 a.m. incident at Home Depot, 1305 S. Lone Hill Ave., Glendora police Lt. Rob Lamborghini said.
A manager at the store spotted Weinzril trying to steal a drill set and confronted him, the lieutenant said.
“A struggle ensued for the items,” he said. “The suspect was ultimately detained.”
Officers arrived and took custody of the alleged thief, Lamborghini said.
No significant injuries resulted from the incident, he added.