ROSEMEAD >> Deputies searched a Rosemead Walmart store in response to a telephoned bomb threat Friday but found nothing out of the ordinary, officials said.
A manager at the Walmart Supercenter, 1827 Walnut Grove Ave., received a phone call just after 7 p.m. claiming a bomb had been placed in the store, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. Ismael Chavez said.
Deputies searched the store and found nothing suspicious or unusual, the lieutenant said.
Officials sounded the all-clear about 8 p.m., and the store returned to normal operation.
ROSEMEAD >> A fire broke out at a two-story apartment building in Rosemead Friday before being quickly extinguished by firefighters, officials said.
The fire was first reported at 2:11 p.m.. at an apartment building in the 3100 block of East Del Mar Avenue, near Whitmore Street, Los Angeles County Fire Department Inspector Randall Wright said.
Firefighters arrived on-scene in four minutes and found smoke rising from a second-floor apartment unit, Wright said.
Firefighters kept the blaze confined to the kitchen where it originated, fire Capt. Kent Chatfield said.
They doused the fire and declared it “knocked down” at 2:27 p.m., Wright added.
The apartment in which the fire ignited was left uninhabitable, Chatfield said. The other residents of the building were initially evacuated, but expected to be able to get back into their homes Friday afternoon.
No injuries were reported, and the cause of the fire was under investigation.
ROSEMEAD >> Deputies engaged in a stand-off with a suspect at a Rosemead motel Wednesday, officials said.
The incident began shortly before 6 p.m. at the Royale Inne, 2618 North San Gabriel Blvd., Los Angeles County sheriff’s Sgt. Jose Carbajal said.
Few details were initially available regarding the stand-off, which continued more than two hours later. It was unclear how the incident began, or whether the suspect was believed to be armed.
The public was asked to avoid San Gabriel Boulevard between Fern and Garvey avenues as the stand-off continued Wednesday evening.
ROSEMEAD >> A Los Angeles Police Department motorcycle officer suffered minor injuries in a collision with a car, which fled the scene, on the 10 Freeway Thursday afternoon, authorities said.
The crash took place at 4:43 p.m. on the eastbound Metro ExpressLanes of the 10 Freeway near Del Mar Avenue in Rosemead, California Highway Patrol Officer Alex Rubio said.
The car that struck the officer was described as a black Honda Civic or Toyota Camry, officials said. It was lowered, with custom rims, tinted windows and white lettering on the rear windshield.
The hit-and-run car was last seen exiting the 10 Freeway at Walnut Grove Avenue, just east of the crash scene, according to the CHP.
The Metro ExpressLanes of the eastbound 10 Freeway were briefly shut down following the collision, however the regular traffic lanes remained open, Rubio said.
The crash was being investigated by the East Los Angeles office of the CHP.
ROSEMEAD >> A woman suffered a broken arm and narrowly escaped more serious injury after a utility pole impaled her car following a freak accident on Valley Boulevard in Rosemead, authorities said.
The crash took place just after 6 p.m. on Valley Boulevard, near Merwin C. Gill Way, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. William Wicker said.
The metal utility pole smashed through the windshield of the car, exiting through the driver-side rear window and narrowly missing the driver, according to sheriff’s and fire officials.
The crash was triggered when a cable strung between two utility poles to display banners suddenly fell onto the roadway, Wicker said.
The fallen cable ended up entangled with an SUV that was eastbound on Valley Boulevard, the lieutenant said. The SUV then ripped the pole in half, tossing a long portion of it into westbound traffic lanes.
“A White Acura heading westbound struck the pole. It went through the windshield,” Wicker said.
The pole narrowly missed directly striking the driver, described only as a woman, officials said.
“It looked like it was pretty close,” Wicker said.
But after freeing the woman from the wreckage, firefighters took her to a hospital with injuries not believed to be life-threatening, including a broken arm, the lieutenant said.
Two women who were inside the SUV that became entangled with the fallen cable were not injured, he said.
It was not clear Wednesday what caused the cable to fall, or who was responsible for it.
PHOTO courtesy of KCBS/KCAL
SAN GABRIEL >> Officials have released the name of a 51-year-old Rosemead man who died in a solo-car crash in San Gabriel a week ago.
Louis Richard Valdez died at a hospital shortly after his 2013 Hyundai struck a palm tree in the 8600 block of East Broadway about 8:40 p.m. Aug. 3, Los Angeles County Department of Coroner Lt. Larry Dietz said. He died from multiple traumatic injuries, and the death was ruled accidental.
For reasons that remained under investigation, Valdez’s car suddenly veered to the left side of the road and struck a large palm tree as he was westbound Broadway, CHP officials said.
A 65-year-old sexual predator who cut off his GPS ankle bracelet before luring a church acquaintance to a coffee shop and pulling a gun on her last year will likely die in prison.
Frank Hernandez of Rosemead received a sentence of 40 years to life in prison Friday for making criminal threats against the young woman, who had refused his romantic advances, Los Angeles County Deputy District Attorney David Arvazian said.
Hernandez already had a lifelong criminal history which included two rape convictions and bank robbery when he met with his latest victim on Sept. 12, 2013, Ayvazian said.
“He’s a true predator,” the prosecutor said. “He is a very dangerous person.”
Hernandez’s sentence is effectively a life sentence, Ayvazian said. Hernandez will be required to serve all 40 years of his sentence before becoming eligible for parole, at which time he will be 105 years old, Ayvazian said.
The jury failed to reach a verdict on two additional charges of attempted kidnapping and attempted carjacking. Ayvazian said he did not pursue those counts further, as they would not have added any additional prison time to Hernandez’s sentence.
Hernandez had met a 23-year-old victim through his church and had tried to pursue a romantic relationship with her, the prosecutor said. But the woman was not interested. She was unaware of Hernandez criminal history or his status as a registered sex offender.
Ayvazian said Hernandez persuaded the woman to meet him at a Starbucks coffee shop on Fremont Avenue in Alhambra about 9:30 a.m. Sept. 12, Alhambra police Sgt. Edward Rodriguez said at the time.
But first, he removed his court-ordered GPS tracking device, Ayvazian said.
“He cut it off that morning and hid it in a supermarket by his house. It was all pre-planned.” Ayvazian said.
As soon as the woman arrived in her car, Hernandez approached her and pulled a gun.
Hernandez tried to force his way into the woman’s car while ordering her to be quiet and threatening to kill her, Ayvazian said. He also struck her with the gun.
The crime was interrupted to by good Samaritans. One woman confronted Hernandez and told him to leave the woman alone, despite hearing the terrified victim scream that he had a gun. Hernandez abandoned the crime and fled.
A second woman obtained a photograph of Hernandez’s license plate as he drove away, helping police to quickly identify him as a suspect in the crime, according to Alhambra police Sgt. Joe Flannagan.
“They’re wonderful,” Ayvazian said of the two good Samaritans. “They were amazing.”
Police arrested Hernandez at his home within a few hours.
Hernandez was paroled from prison in 2011 following a 1990 rape conviction, according to Ayvazian and court records. He was also previously convicted of rape in 1984.
Hernandez served prison time in the 1970 for bank robbery, and has other robbery convicted dating back to his youth in the 1960s, Ayvazian said.
All of Hernandez previous convictions took place prior to California’s three strikes law was enacted in 1994.
A man was rushed into surgery Friday afternoon after he was wounded in a car-to-car shooting at a Rosemead intersection, officials said.
The shooting took place about 12:40 p.m. on westbound Graves Avenue at Del Mar avenues, Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials said.
“The victim was stopped at the corner of Graves and Del Mar,” sheriff’s Lt. Ismael Chavez said.
The attacker or attackers pulled up alongside the victim, he said.
“There’s some words exchanged. W don’t know what words were exchanged,” Chavez said. “Multiple gunshots are fired at the victim’s car.”
Chavez said the victim, a 29-year-old Rosemead man, suffered a single gunshot wound to his torso and drove south on Del Mar for a short distance before crashing his car into a brick wall surrounding a liquor store, Chavez said.
Paramedics took the man to a hospital, where he was listed in stable condition after undergoing surgery, Chavez said.
A motive in the shooting was unknown, he said. Because of the wounded man’s medical condition, “We haven’t been able to talk to the victim.”
Investigators initially described the shooter as a Latino man wearing a dark-colored baseball cap and driving a dark sedan that made a U-turn and headed east on Graves Avenue following the shooting.
Detectives from the sheriff’s Temple Station are handling the investigation.
ROSEMEAD >> A 26-year-old Santa Ana man died early Saturday following a solo-car crash on the 10 Freeway in Rosemead, officials said.
The man had not been officially identified at the Los Angeles County Department of Coroner Saturday afternoon, coroner’s officials said.
He was driving a 2002 Nissan Sentra westbound on the 10 Freeway, just west of Baldwin Avenue, at an unknown speed just prior to the crash, California Highway Patrol Officer Jennifer Cassidy said.
“For reasons currently under investigation, the driver was unable to maintain control of his vehicle,” Cassidy said. The car slammed into the center divider wall and ultimately came to rest in the center median.
The driver, who was not wearing a seat belt, was taken to Garfield Medical Center in Monterey Park where he succumbed to his injuries, Cassidy said.
The cause of the crash was being investigated by officers from the East Los Angeles office of the CHP.
LOS ANGELES — A federal judge sentenced a Rosemead businessman to more than two and a half years in prison Thursday for coordinating the importation of more than $2.3 million worth of counterfeit shoes, designer purses and sports jerseys through the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, authorities said.
Kevin “Peter” Wang, 54, pleaded guilty to trafficking in counterfeit goods in federal court in Los Angeles and received his 31-month prison sentenced from U.S. District Judge John A. Kronstadt. He was further sentenced to an additional six months of home detention and ordered to pay $50,000 in restitution and a $10,000 fine, U.S. Department of Justice officials said in a written statement.
“Wang helped Chinese exporters bring counterfeit goods — including fake Nike shoes, labeled as ‘garment hangers’; counterfeit Coach, Gucci, and Louis Vuitton handbags, labeled as ‘toilet paper’; and bogus NFL, NBA, and NHL jerseys — into the United States,” according to the DOJ statement. “From 2008 to 2012, the counterfeit goods were smuggled in shipping containers through the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach.”
Thursday’s sentencing was the second in recent weeks involving the importation of counterfeit goods, officials said.
Hamlet Ayvazyan, 37, of Glendale, received a one-year federal prison sentence on April 28 after also pleading guilty to trafficking in counterfeit goods, DOJ officials said. He was also ordered to pay a $4,000 fine.
Through his businesses, Speedvision Motorsport in Glendale, Ayvazyan received shipments of, and sold, counterfeit automotive wheels falsely labeled as Mercedes-Benz logos, according to the DOJ statement. Investigators in 2012 seized more than 600 counterfeit wheels from Ayvazyan.
“Ayvazyan also kept 2,100 adhesive logos and wheel center caps that bore marks such as ‘Mercedes-Benz’ and ‘BMW,’” the statement said.
DOJ officials added that Ayvazyan paid about $100 for each wheel and sold them for $200, “which was substantially less than the manufacturer’s price for legitimate wheels, which was as much as $2,000.