VIDEO: Hikers rescued via helicopter from Switzer Falls mountain ridge


ANGELES NATIONAL FOREST >> A sheriff’s helicopter crew hoisted three stranded hikers and their dog to safety Saturday after they became trapped on a mountain ridge north of La Canada Flintridge, officials said.
The rescue took place about 12:45 p.m. near the Bear Canyon Campground in the Switzer Falls portion of the forest.
The hikers, two men, a woman and a dog, went off a trail, became disoriented and ended up stuck on a mountain top, unable to get back down, Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials said in a written statement.
“One hiker was able to make a cell phone call to contact the local sheriff’s station, Crescenta Valley Station, and requested help.
A sheriff’s department helicopter responded and hoisted all three people and their dog into the aircraft before flying them to safety, officials said. They were not hurt.

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Discarded toy prop resembling dynamite draws bomb squad to La Canada Flintridge park

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LA CANADA FLINTRIDGE >> A bomb squad responded to a La Canada Flintridge Park Sunday before ultimately determining a suspicious object resembling dynamite was a discarded toy prop left behind from a birthday part the day before, officials said.
The incident kicked off about 10:15 a.m. when someone reported finding a bundle of five red cylinders lying on the ground at a small park in a residential neighborhood in the 4900 block of Ocean View Boulevard, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. Randy Tuinstra said.
Police notified the Sheriff’s Arson-Explosives Detail of the find, and a bomb squad responded to the scene, the lieutenant said.
As deputies were beginning to evacuate nearby homes, a resident was able to shed some light on the unusual discovery.
He explained that the device was a toy prop that had been left at the park after being used for a “hot potato” game during a birthday party Saturday, Tuinstra said.
Bomb squad members quickly confirmed the device, which was made of PVC pipe, was harmless, Tuinstra said. Officials declared the all-clear about 11:15 a.m.
Though the object was found to pose no threat, Tuinstra said the initial caller did the right thing by reported the suspicious device to authorities, adding that officials would rather err on the side of caution in such situations.

PHOTO – courtesy

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Police, worried family members seek missing Sunland woman last seen in La Crescenta

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Police and worried family members are asking the public’s help in finding a Sunland woman who mysteriously vanished four weeks ago after stopping by her sister’s home in La Crescenta.
Kimberly Ann Blum, 44, was last seen the afternoon of June 5 as she left her sister’s home in the 2000 block of Cinco Casitas Lane in La Crescenta, according to family members and Los Angeles police officials.
After briefly stopping by the house, where a graduation party was planned for her niece, Blum, suddenly left, her mother Rosalie Blum said.
“She was at a family event, and left, and hasn’t been since,” the worried mother said. “I don’t know if she went to get some air, or what.”
A bag containing some of Kim Blum’s belongings, including medication, was found along Angeles Crest Highway in the Angeles National Forest, about 21 miles north of the 210 Freeway, according to police and family members.
And despite extensive searches of the area, Kim Blum’s silver, 2004 honda CRV SUV with California license plate 5JVU774, remains missing, officials said.
“We’ve exhausted all leads,” Detective Cletus Carlton of the LAPD’s Adult Missing Persons Unit. “We’ve not found her car, which is unusual.”
Finding the SUV may be the key to finding out what happened to Kim Blum, Carlton said.
Police, aided by a Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department helicopter and the Montrose Search and Rescue Team have searched the area where the Kim Blum’s bag was found multiple times since her disappearance, finding no other clues into her whereabouts, Carlton said.
Family members even hired a private helicopter to conduct a search, with no success, Rosalie Blum said. “It’s really, really treacherous terrain up there,” she added.
Kim Blum’ credit cards and bank accounts have not been accessed since her disappearance, police and family members said. “And she didn’t have much cash on her, from what we know,” the mother said.
“She did have a cell phone, a smart phone, but the last ping was at a tower near her sister’s house, so we don’t know whether she turned it off. There hasn’t been anything from that,” Rosalie Blum said.
Rosalie Blum said her daughter has never gone missing before and had been busy making plans at the time of her disappearance.
A friend was scheduled to arrive in town to stay with Kim Blum June 6, Rosalie Blum said. Kim Blum had also made several appointments to meet with clients of her personal organizer business.
Rosalie Blum said she also couldn’t imagine her daughter voluntarily leaving behind her beloved dog, Sadie.
The mother said she planned to head up into the forest again Thursday to pass out fliers with pictures of Kim Blum as far north as Wrightwood.
“You always want to be hopeful,” Rosalie Blum said.
The worried mother asked those who will be recreating in the forest this Independence Day weekend to keep an eye out for Kim Blum or her SUV.
Kim Blum, a graduate of La Canada high School and the University of Redlands, is described as white, 5 feet 2 inches tall, 144 pounds, with brown hair and blue eyes. She was last seen wearing a black tank top, and she also wears prescription glasses.
Anyone with information was asked to contact Detective Carlton at 213-996-1800.

PHOTO of Kim Blum courtesy of the Los Angeles Police Department.

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Elderly couple robbed in La Canada Flintridge home invasion; 2nd similar crime reported in area in two days

For the second time in two days in the same area, home-invasion robbers stormed into a La Canada Flintridge home late Thursday, authorities said.
Two armed robbers escaped with cash and jewelry after robbing an elderly couple about 10 p.m. at their home in the 5100 block of Jarvis Avenue, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. Chad Sauter said.
Both robbers brandished handguns as they surprised the couple in their home and ransacked the house for valuables, the lieutenant said. No injuries were reported.
The robbers were initially described only as black men, one taller than the other, wearing all dark clothing and hooded sweat shirts, Sauter said.
A similar home-invasion robbery took place late Wednesday in the 2900 block of Los Olivos Lane in neighboring La Crescenta.
In that crime, a man was awakened and tied up by two robbers who held him at gunpoint as they ransacked his home for cash, jewelry and electronics, Lt. Elisabeth Sachs said. The robbers were described as two black men in their 20s, one of them about 6 feet 3 inches tall, wearing dark clothing.
While officials did not know for certain if the robberies were linked, investigators noted the similarities.
“Because the descriptions are so vague, we can’t really say, but it’s an interesting coincidence,” Sauter said. “It’s possible they could be the same suspects.”
Detectives from the Sheriff’s Major Crimes Bureau are handling the investigation.

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Rock slide triggers fatal crash along Angeles Crest Highway

ANGELES NATIONAL FOREST >> A man died Thursday after his car was struck by a rock slide along Angeles Crest Highway north of La Canada Flintridge and slammed into the mountainside, authorities said.
The crash was reported just before 2:40 p.m. along Angeles Crest Highway, about four miles north of Foothill Boulevard, California Highway Patrol Officer Peter Bishop said.
A man estimated to be in his late-40s was driving when his sedan was struck by rocks that tumbled from the mountainside, Los Angeles County Fire Department Capt. Brian Kane said.
The 1993 Toyota Corolla ended up crashing into the mountainside, seriously injuring the driver, officials said. The driver was the only person inside the car.
Paramedics rushed the injured man to Huntington Hospital in Pasadena where he succumbed to his injuries a short time later, according to CHP and fire officials.
The crash was being investigated by officers from the Altadena office of the CHP.

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UPDATED: Bees swarm, sting motorists after car crash in La Canada Flintridge; two hospitalized

LA CANADA FLINTRIDGE >> An agitated hive of bees swarmed cars following a minor car crash Sunday, sending two people to the hospital with stings, officials said.
The incident began with a two-car crash shortly after 3 p.m. at Castle Road and Los Amigos Street, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Sgt. Jose Larios said.
The crash itself was not believed to involve injuries, however one of the cars ended up striking a tree that contained a bee hive, the sergeant said.
Disturbed by the impact, “The bees went everywhere,” Los Angeles County Fire Department Dispatch Supervisor Cheryl Sims said.
The insects swarmed into about a dozen nearby cars, she said.
Deputies arrived to find two people with many bees clinging to them, Latios said. Both were taken to a hospital with “numerous stings.”
Tt was not clear how many stings the victims suffered, Larios said. The conditions of the patients were not immediately available.
A deputy who responded to help suffered a single sting, but was fine, the sergeant added.
Firefighters remained on the scene more than an hour later.
“They’re foaming down the area to keep the bees from being active,” Sims said.
A La Canada Flintridge city beekeeper was summoned to the scene to deal with the swarming bees, Sims added.
There was no initial word regarding whether the swarm was composed of Africanized “killer” bees or ordinary bees.

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$7,000 worth of wiring stolen from La Canada Flintridge Rose Parade float construction site

LA CANADA FLINTRIDGE — Thieves made off with about $7,000 worth of heavy-duty copper wiring being used to create the La Canada Flintridge Tournament of Roses Association’s 2014 Rose Parade float earlier this week, officials said Thursday.
The missing wire was first discovered Tuesday when workers arrived at the construction site in the 4500 block of Hampton Road, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Deputy Randy Forney said.
Based on the scale of the heist, it appeared to involved more than one burglar, Forney said. “It would almost have to.”
The thieves cut a padlock on a storage unit to access the wire, he added.
The theft was believed to have taken place sometime between Friday night and Tuesday morning, Forney said.
No description of the culprits was available.
The La Canada Flintridge Tournament of Roses Association has been building its float, titles “Dog Gone,” to enter in the 2014 Rose Parade.
Donations to help the nonprofit organization replace the stolen equipment are being accepted at the http://www.lcftra.org.

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Motorcyclist badly injured in Angeles Crest Highway crash

ANGELES NATIONAL FOREST — An Agoura Hills man was flown to a hospital in critical condition after a motorcycle crash early Sunday on Angeles Crest Highway in the forest north of La Canada Flintridge, authorities said.
The crash was reported about 7 a.m. on Angeles Crest Highway near Angeles Forest Highway, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. Angela Shepherd said.
The motorcyclist, 50, went over the side of the road on his Harley-Davidson and tumbled an estimated 100 feet down, she said.
Rescuers stabilized the man before flying him to a trauma center by helicopter with major injuries, the lieutenant said.

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Body found in car along Angeles Crest Highway, suicide suspected

ANGELES NATIONAL FOREST — Officials are investigating the death of a man whose body was discovered inside a car parked along Angeles Crest Highway early Wednesday as a suicide.
The body was discovered about 10 a.m. inside a vehicle parked near mile marker 29.31 of Angeles Crest Highway north of La Canada Flintridge, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. Angela Shepherd said.
It initially appeared man had mixed chemicals to produce a poison inside the car, she said.
There were no initial signs of foul play, Shepherd said. The investigation was ongoing.

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Burglars steal valuables, guns in La Canada Flintridge burglary

LA CANADA FLINTRIDGE — Burglars broke into two houses and took antique silverware worth about $50,000, four computers and two weapons Friday.
They tried to hit a third house but fled when a resident spotted them in the backyard. Deputies and a sheriff’s helicopter searched for the silver Porsche Cayenne carrying two men and a woman driver but didn’t find the culprits.
Lt. Brian Fitch of the sheriff’s Crescenta Valley Station said the first break-in occurred sometime between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. Friday in the 4700 block of La Canada Boulevard.
Residents came home to find the back sliding door smashed, Fitch said. The burglars took silverware, two laptops, a handgun and a shotgun.
At 2:45 p.m., a woman rang a doorbell in the 4300 block of Oakwood Avenue. As the resident was walking to the front door, he noticed two black men in red hooded sweatshirts in the backyard, Fitch said, The resident yelled at the intruders. A neighbor saw the two men getting into a vehicle driven by a black woman, according to the lieutenant.
Half an hour later, the trio struck again.
Fitch said a baby-sitter pulled into a circular driveway in the 4500 block of Loma Vista Drive and saw a Porsche driven by a black woman with a male passenger. She discovered a smashed back door. Fitch said two Mac computers were stolen from the house.
- Ruby Gonzales

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