EL MONTE >> A reward for information leading to justice for an El Monte man shot to death during a botched robbery at a Jack in the Box restaurant last month continues to grow, as city officials in El Monte and Jack in the Box representatives have announced plans to add to a $20,000 reward already offered by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, authorities said.
Juan Miguel Vidal, 25, was working at the restaurant about 7:30 p.m. on Oct. 21 when the unidentified, masked gunman jumped over the counter of the restaurant, 9220 Flair Drive, demanded money and immediately opened fire, Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials said.
•Video: El Monte fatal shooting
Vidal, who was engaged to be married and had recently graduated pharmacy technician school, died from his injuries at a hospital, officials said. His killer fled empty-handed and remains at large. An accomplice believed to have served as the getaway driver of a dark-colored sedan in which the shooter fled is also being sought, Detective Adan Torres of the sheriff’s Homicide Bureau said.
In hopes of generating tips from the public, the Los Angeles Count Board of Supervisors authorized a $20,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for Vidal’s slaying on Wednesday.
The El Monte City council plans to announce the city will be contributing to the award amount during a press conference on Monday, according to El Monte police Lt. Christopher Cano. The amount the city will be adding was not available.
“Additionally, John Maki, owner of the franchised Jack in the Box restaurant where Juan Vidal worked, and Oscar Hurtado, representing Jack in the Box corporate, both added $5,000.00 dollars each to the reward,” Cano said in a written statement.
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.
EL MONTE >> Authorities offered up a $20,000 reward on Wednesday for information in the fatal shooting of a 25-year-old worker during a botched robbery at an El Monte Jack in Box restaurant last month.
Juan Manuel Vidal died following the shooting, which took place on Oct. 21 inside the restaurant, 9220 Flair Drive.
He was working about 7:30 p.m. when a masked gunman jumped over the counter, “demanded money, and then shot the victim almost immediately,” Los Angeles County Sheriff Jim McDonnell said. The deadly shooting was caught on video by restaurant surveillance cameras.
“The suspect appeared to panic, jumped back over the counter and fled the location through the north door onto Flair Drive,” he said. No money was obtained.
*Video: Surveillance camera footage of fatal shooting
Vidal, who as engaged and was looking forward to starting a new career having recently graduated pharmacy technician school, succumbed to his injuries at a nearby hospital.
His killer remains at large.
The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted to authorize a $20,000 reward for information leading to the capture and conviction of the unidentified gunman.
Vidal’s mother, Mary Smay, implored anyone with information to come forward.
“I really want the police to get the man who did this to my son. He needs to pay for all the pain and suffering that he’s caused to so many people… people that loved my son,” she said.
“That man has no heart,” Smay said. “Somebody needs to let the police know where he’s at.”
Sheriff Jim McDonnell also urged anyone with information to do the right thing.
“This is a tragic incident we want to talk about and really, truly ask the public’s help in solving this case,” McDonnell said.
“He was a young man on the right track, doing the right things, all of the right things, working, when this suspect came in and took his life,” the sheriff’s said. “We need the publics help to hold him accountable for what he did and to prevent him from hurting someone else.”
The reward was proposed by Supervisor Hilda Solis.
“There’s little consolation we can offer to Juan’s family and loved ones, but the gunman or people involved are still at large, and we hope this reward, together with other rewards that will be put forward by the city of El Monte and other individuals, that his will help to bring those that are responsible for this death to be held accountable.”
In addition to the gunman, detectives believe at least one accomplice served as a getaway driver in the crime, speeding the killer away in a dark-colored sedan, Detective Adan Torres of the sheriff’s Homicide Bureau said.
Anyone with information is urged to contact the sheriff’s Homicide Bureau at 323-890-5500. Tips may also be submitted anonymously online to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.
Funds to help Vidal’s family are being collected online at www.gofundme.com/2vh4f5w.
PASADENA >> The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors approved a $20,000 reward Tuesday for information leading to the arrest and/or conviction of those responsible for the murder of an Altadena man last December.
Robert Arthur Calderon, 27, was gunned down about 10:45 p.m. on Dec. 18 in the 600 block of North Mentor Avenue, according to Pasadena police and Los Angeles County coroner officials. The case remains unsolved.
Raised in the Altadena and Pasadena areas, Calderon attended St. Elizabeth Parish School in Altadena, then St. Francis High School in La Cañada Flintridge and Pasadena High School before ultimately obtaining his diploma from Pasadena City College, his mother, Sarah Mendoza-Jaime, said.
His family has worked tirelessly to seek justice ever since Calderon’s slaying, posting flyers near the crime scene and at Calderon’s hang-outs.
“On behalf of Robert Arthur Calderon’s family we want to thank Mike Antonovich and the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors for making the funds available to assist in my sons murder,” said Mendoza-Jaime, a longtime program coordinato at the Foothill Workforce Development Board in Pasadena.
“Our hopes are that by offering a reward the public will come forth and assist in finding those responsible for his heinous murder,”sje said.
Mendoza-Jaime said she had been trying to get an award established through Pasadena officials for months with no success. When the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors offered an award this week, she said she asked the city about contributing as well, to no avail.
“Through this process of grieving I have found that the Pasadena Police Department’s advocacy for parents is lacking for victims of homicides and more services should be provided to assist grieving parents and their families,” she said. “Fortunately, through my own effort I have learned about information such as Crime Stoppers, Victims of a Crime, Justice For Homicide Victims, Justice or Murdered Children, LA County Board of Directors Reward Request, and Clear Channel.”
Anyone with information can reach Pasadena police Detective Tim, Bundy at (626) 744-3861 or the Pasadena Police Department at 626-744-4241. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.
PHOTO of Robert Calderon, courtesy.
SAN DIMAS >> Authorities released a suspect sketch and offered a $20,000 reward Wednesday for information leading to the arrest and conviction of gunman who fatally shot a San Dimas sandwich shop owner during a robbery last week.
Investigators also released a suspect sketch in connection with the June 2 shooting a Quiznos restaurant at 1034 Arrow Highway that fatally wounded owner Pravin “Peter” Patel, 62.
“Besides being a husband, a father, a grandfather and a father-in-law, Mr. Patel was the owner of the Quiznos and he is very well respected in the community,” said Lt. Dave Coleman of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau. “Everybody likes him. He was a loving, kind man.”
The unidentified shooter was as a white or Latino man in his early-20s, about 6 feet to 6 feet 1 inch tall and 180 pounds. During the crime, he wore a black T-shirt, plaid shorts and a baseball cap.
“We’re asking for the public’s help,” Coleman said. “Anybody who may have been in the area around 3:20 p.m…. any information that you could provide would be of great assistance to us.”
The office of Los Angeles County Supervisor Michael Antonovich authorized the reward.
Patel was working as usual when the robber entered the sandwich shop, brandished a handgun and demanded money, officials said.
Patel handed over the money from the register to the robber, who threatened to harm the two customers inside the store if he did not, Coleman said. Patel then followed the robber outside.
“As Mr. Patel exited the restaurant, a struggle ensued between he and the suspect,and Mr. Patel was shot and mortally wounded,” Coleman said.
The brazen and deadly daytime was “very unusual” for the area, Capt. Duane Harris of the Sheriff’s San Dimas Station said. “This is appropriately described as a quiet community,” he said.
A large memorial of flowers and candles sat in front of Quiznos shop Wednesday. Family members did not wish to comment.
Monrovia police Lt. Mike Lee said he knew Patel since before he bought his Quiznos restaurant, when he owned a video store on Arrow Highway and Sunflower Avenue.
“He was just a good man,” Lee said. “He always remembered your name.”
Lee described Patel as a soft spoken man who always treated customers nicely.
Signs on the door of the eatery invited to public to a memorial service at 2:15 p.m. Thursday at the Memory Garden Memorial Park and Mortuary, 455 W. Central Ave. in Brea. “Peter was a hard working family man who brought people together,” the sign read. “He was passionate about serving his food and exchanging family stories with his customers. Peter spent every day working side by side with the woman he loved most — his wife, Maya “Mary” Patel.”
A candlelight vigil is planned for 7 p.m. Friday in front of the Quiznos store. A website collecting donations to help Patel’s family has been established at www.youcaring.com/pravin.
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.
SAN DIMAS — A law enforcement union announced a $10,000 reward Thursday for information leading to the arrest of a 19-year-old El Monte man accused of stealing two bags containing sheriff’s badges and identification cards from the Raging Waters park in San Dimas in September.
Randy Sandoval has been identified as one of two suspects in the Sept. 22 theft at the amusement park, which was closed to the public for a private gathering of Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department employees, Lt. Janice Banks of the Sheriff’s Parks Bureau said. The two bags stolen belonged to off-duty deputies assigned to the sheriff’s Palmdale Station.
He was identified via a surveillance photo obtained at a store where a credit card taken in the theft was used within hours of the crime, officials said. A photograph of Sandoval, whose identity was not known at the time, along with a female accomplice was first published by sheriff’s officials Oct. 17.
Help from the public results in the arrest of a 17-year-old girl in connection with the crime, as well as the identification of Sandoval, officials from the Sheriff’s Parks Bureau said in a written statement.
In hopes of tracking down the remaining suspect and getting back the stolen items, the Association for Los Angeles Deputy Sheriff’s, which hosted the September event at Raging Waters, has offered a $10,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of Sandoval.
The bags were taken from inside an employee break room in front of the park’s security office, Banks said.
In the three hours that followed, a credit card stolen from one of the off-duty deputies was used to rack up about $670 in charges at businesses in San Dimas, West Covina and Baldwin Park.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Detective Banks at 661-294-3544, or 213-276-8108
PHOTO of Randy Sandoval, 19, of El Monte courtesy of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
ALHAMBRA — Los Angeles County Supervisor Michael Antonovich has announced plans to propose a $20,000 reward Tuesday for information leading to the capture of the hit-and-run driver who fatally struck an elderly, wheelchair-bound Alhambra man late last year.
Shih–Siang Ho died at the scene of the Dec. 1, 2009 crash at the 6th Street underpass at Ramona Road in Alhambra, police and coroner’s officials said. The driver of the unknown-type vehicle fled the scene and has not been found.
Alhambra Police said Ho was believed to be heading home from his sister-in-law’s house when he was struck about 1:20 p.m.
Antonovich plans to propose a $20,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the hit-and-run driver at Tuesday’s Board of Supervisors meeting, according to written statement issued by his office.
Investigators are renewing their request for the public’s help in locating the hit-and-run vehicle and its driver, according to the statement. It likely had minor to moderate damage on the front, passenger side as a result of the crash.
Anyone with information is asked to call Alhambra police Officer Brandon Cardella at 626-570-5119.
The Board of Supervisors is about to extend the time limit on the $10,000 reward offered for information leading to the arrest and conviction of two men suspected of killing Sammantha Salas in January.
Salas was gunned down in a section of Monrovia known as “No Man’s Land.” Police believe her killing was the result of a series of escalating gang violence attacks between black and Latino gangs that took on racial overtones.
The reward vote takes place Tuesday.
Sheriff’s homicide Lt. Dan Rosenberg said Monday that all five juveniles suspected of taking part in the robbery that killed Covina Hills resident Michelle Chien at her home earlier this year will be tried as adults. One suspect, Victor Maurtua, 19, a member of the El Monte Flores gang remains at large in the case.
“This is a pretty vicious case,” Rosenberg said. “And it was random basically. These were local kids. One individual orchestrated the whole things and the others followed along.”
Rosenberg also has a crew working alongside LAPD detectives in hopes that they can solve the slaying of Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Deputy Juan Escalante, 27.
The deputy was slain outside his home two weeks ago, as he left for work at Men’s Central Jail.
According to the Los Angeles Times:
A U.S. Army reservist, Escalante had worked for the Sheriff’s Department for 2 1/2 years. He was assigned to the “high power” unit, where dangerous inmates — many of them violent gang members — are housed in single-man cells. Investigators said this week that the shot that killed Escalante was fired from behind him and that he may not have seen his killer or killers.
Ropsenberg said deputies and officers are working alongside and getting along.
“We’re working real well together,” he said. “We still don’t have a motive, but we’re looking at everything.”
The Supes are offering a $10,000 reward for information on the murder of Evelyn Mosley, according to a press release put out this afternoon.
Mosley, 90, was killed last Thursday after a brief struggle in her home in the 3200 block of Lincoln Avenue in Altadena.
Her body was discovered by fire fighters responding to a call at the home.
THe Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted to extend the amount of time a reward would be offered for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the killer or killers of Robert Whitehead, a good samaritan who was shot to death outside his parents home when he confronted a group of taggers.
Arrests have been made in the case and at least one man suspected of involvement, Paul “Malo” Salazar, a onetime Bishop Amat student who was an alleged member of Puente 13, is dead.
Salazar was killed outside his home last summer.
The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors will vote on a proposed reward in the Hit and Run death of Covina resident Ralph Granado, pictured above with his wife Rose. Granado was killed on his way to work at the County Assessors office on July 20. Tragically a week later his nephew was killed in Whittier when he was struck by a drunken driver.