UPDATED: Suspicious substance found at Rowland Heights Post Office determined to be baby powder

ROWLAND HEIGHTS — A hazardous materials team responded to the U.S. Post Office in Rowland Heights Sunday after a suspicious white powder — ultimately determined to be baby powder — was found at the facility, authorities said.
The incident began about 9:50 a.m., when someone called from the post office, 1521 Nogales Street, to report finding a “white, powdery substance” in an area where boxes are kept, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Sgt. Robert Causey said. There was no note or other suspicious material accompanying the powder.
Firefighters who arrived to take a look at the situation summoned a sheriff’s hazardous materials team to continue the investigation, the sergeant said.
Officials ultimately determined that the substance was ordinary baby powder and declared safe about noon.

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Man wounded, suspect arrested in stabbing at Rowland Heights motel

ROWLAND HEIGHTS — Deputies arrested man Sunday after he stabbed an associate in the leg during an argument at a Rowland Heights motel, authorities said.
Deputies booked Anthony Bolhderes, 28, of Lomita on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon following the incident, which took place about 12:40 p.m. in a hallway at the Quality Inn & Suites, 1170 Fairway Drive, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. Ed Wells said.
“The suspect and victim knew each other and got into an argument,” Wells said. “The victim was stabbed in the thigh.”
Paramedics took the injured man to a hospital where he underwent treatment for an injury that was not considered to be life-threatening, the lieutenant said.
Responding deputies found and detained Bolhderes nearby, he said.
The victim’s age and city of residence were not available, and the nature of the argument between the men was not clear.

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Rowland Heights man charged with fatal stabbing of El Monte man in La Puente

A Rowland Heights man was charged Tuesday with fatally stabbing another man whose body was found behind a La Puente business.
The District Attorney’s Office filed one count of murder against 27-year-old Andres Aguirre Garcia, according to DA spokeswoman Sarah Ardalani.
She said the charge comes with the allegation that the suspect personally used a knife to commit the crime.
Garcia’s arraignment was continued to March 11 at Pomona Superior Court.
The victim, 28-year-old Jose Chacon of El Monte, was found lying in a parking lot behind a business in the 15900 block of Old Valley Road in La Puente about 2:45 a.m. Feb. 12. He sustained multiple stab wounds to his upper body and was pronounced dead at the scene.
Lt. Steve Jauch of the sheriff’s Homicide Bureau said Garcia and Chacon were acquaintances. The two had a disagreement which resulted in the stabbing, he said.
But Jauch didn’t say what the disagreement was about or what led deputies to Garcia on Feb. 14. He was arrested that night.
“He confessed and he produced the knife,” Jauch said.
Booking records show Garcia is being held at Men’s Central Jail in lieu of $1 million bail.

- Ruby Gonzales

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Father and sons from Rowland Heights sentenced for selling homemade ‘male enhancement’ pills

LOS ANGELES — A father and two sons from Rowland Heights were sentenced this week for illegally importing an erectile dysfunction medication, manufacturing it into pills and selling them nationwide as a “male enhancement” drug, federal authorities said Friday.
United States District Judge Dean D. Pregerson sentenced Won Bae Kim, 61, to 11 months in federal prison and ordered him to pay a $10,000 following his conviction for unlawfully importing tadalafil, which is the active ingredient in the commercial erectile dysfunction drug Cialis, U.S. Attorney’s officials said in a written statement.
His sons, Jong Ik Kim, 35, and Jong Heon Kim, 34, were each sentenced to one year probation, including six months of home detention. The sentencing took place in federal court in Los Angeles.
The father started a business under the name Kawa Health, which sold pills labeled as “Xzen 1200” via the Internet and adult book stores, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office. They imported “pounds” of tadalafil from China and sold it as Xzen 1200.
“The packaging for the drugs did not disclose that tadalafil was an ingredient, which prompted the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to issue a warning about the product earlier this year,” according to the statement. “the investigation revealed that the Kims generated sales of more than $300,000 over a one-year period.”
During a search of the family’s Rowland Heights home, officials said, investigators found large amounts of pills, packaging materials for Xzen 1200 and $13,000 in cash.

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150 marijuana plants found in Rowland Heights home

ROWLAND HEIGHTS — A deputy stopped a possible burglary suspect near a house then discovered 150 marijuana plants growing in the residence Friday.
Sgt. Christina Baker of the sheriff’s Walnut/Diamond Bar station said a deputy saw a man acting suspicious around a house in the 1500 block of Greencastle Avenue just before 4 p.m.
The deputy thought the man was a burglary suspect and detained him, she said. The man tried to distance himself from the residence which turned out to be a marijuana grow house, according to Baker.
Raul Villa, 23, was arrested on suspicion of cultivating marijuana. He was being held at the Walnut/Diamond Bar station jail on $50,000 bail.
Villa will be arraigned Tuesday at West Covina Superior Court.

- Ruby Gonazales

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Four accused of helping El Monte rape suspect hide

Four people are accused of helping hide a gang member wanted for raping an El Monte convenience store employee.
El Monte Police Sgt. Roger Cobian said felony charges were filed Tuesday in El Monte Superior Court against Charlene Godinez, 39, of La Puente, John Godinez, 41, of La Puente, Lisa Beserra, 45, of El Monte and Mario Chavez, 43, Rowland Heights for allegedly assisting Joseph Amaya to evade capture and prosecution.
Booking records show the four suspects were arrested Saturday by El Monte police. Charlene and John Godinez are out on bond. Beserra is being held at the Century Regional Detention Facility in Lynwood on a $90,751 bail which includes bail for two other unrelated cases. The three have a Nov. 5 court date.
Chavez is in custody at the Inmate Reception Center in Los Angeles and his bail is $50,000. His booking slip doesn’t show the date for his next court appearance.
Detectives may seek charges against others believed to have helped hide Amaya for the week following the Oct. 19 rape of a 19-year-old woman in El Monte, according to Cobian.
Prosecutors alleged Amaya was at the mini mart in the 4100 block of Peck Road earlier and left. He returned while the employee was getting ready to close the store.
The woman tried to lock the doors but he allegedly forced his way in. Amaya allegedly barricaded the doors, dragged the woman to the back of the business and sexually assaulted her, authorities said.
Detectives searched for the 18-year-old suspect.
“Amaya had been hiding with family and friends moving from El Monte to La Puente and Hacienda Heights,” Cobian said.
He was arrested in West Covina on Saturday after a traffic stop. Cobian said Amaya was in a vehicle with six adults and one minor.
Amaya remains in custody on $5 million bail. His Wednesday arraignment at Pomona Superior Court was continued to Nov. 13, court officials said.

- Ruby Gonzales

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UPDATED: Walnut man dies in 60 Freeway motorcycle hit-and-run; two drivers arrested

A motorcyclist died and two people were arrested early Sunday following a hit-and-run crash on the 60 Freeway at the 605 Freeway, authorities said.
The fatal collision was first reported about 2:40 a.m. in the westbound lanes of the 60 Freeway, just east of the 605 Freeway in an unincorporated county area near Industry, California Highway Patrol Officer Ed Jacobs said.
The name of the motorcyclist was not released by coroner’s officials pending notification of his family. CHP officials described him as a 28-year-old Walnut man.
Arrested were Ai Ho, 57, of Rowland Heights on suspicion of hit-and-run, as well as Gilberto Flores, 25, of Los Angeles, on suspicion of hit-and-run and drunken driving, California Highway Patrol officer Jennifer Cassidy said.
The motorcyclist was riding a 2012 Yamaha motorcycle at a “high rate of speed” in the No. 3 lane prior to the collision, California Highway Patrol officials said in a written statement.
He rear-ended a 1995 Lexus SC300 being driven ahead of him by Ho at about 65 mph, officials said.
“As a result of this collision, (the motorcyclist) was ejected into the No. 3 lane while his vehicle continued travelling westbound,” the statement said.
A 1997 Chevrolet Tahoe being driven by Flores then came upon the scene and struck the motorcycle, according to the CHP.
Paramedics pronounced the motorcyclist dead at the scene, Jacobs said. The Lexus and Chevrolet that were involved in the crash had fled the scene.
Investigators, aided by a license plate that fell off one of the vehicles during the crash, located the cars in Rowland Heights and Los Angeles, and the suspected drivers were arrested, officials said.
According to Los Angeles County booking records, Ho was being held in lieu of $50,000 bail pending her initial court appearance, while Flores was being held in lieu of $100,000 bail.
Officials issued a Sig Alert on the westbound 60 Freeway for more than two hours following the crash.

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Ontario man charged with fatal stabbing of Rowland Heights man

Prosecutors filed murder and other charges this week against an Ontario man accused of stabbing his girlfriend’s brother to death with a foot-long Asian ornamental knife over the weekend in Rowland Heights.
Albert Camacho appeared in Pomona Superior Court Tuesday, where he was charged with the murder of 32-year-old Benjamin Cervantes, who died shortly after Saturday’s 1:30 a.m. stabbing at his home in the 1300 block of Gloriosa Avenue in Rowland Heights, according to Los Angeles County sheriff’s and superior court officials.
Camacho was also charged with four counts of dissuading a witness for threatening witnesses to the stabbing in an attempt to prevent them from calling authorities, Lt. Mike Rosson of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau said.
He entered no plea, and his arraignment was continued to Sept. 12, Los Angeles County district attorney’s officials said.
Rosson said Camacho and Cervantes had argued in the past prior to the fatal stabbing.
“They didn’t get along,” the lieutenant said.
He did not know the specific issue the men were disputing early Saturday when the argument escalated into a fight, and Camacho grabbed a 12-inch-long ornamental Asian knife that was already at the home. Cervantes was stabbed several times in the upper body.
Camacho fled the scene following the stabbing, but only after threatening to harm neighbors who witnessed the stabbing if they called authorities, Rosson said.
He remained at-large for more than 10 hours before ultimately turning himself in at the sheriff’s Walnut-Diamond Bar Station shortly after noon, according to officials and county booking records. He had received word from family members that he was being sought by homicide detectives.
Detectives recovered the knife believed to have been used in the stabbing, though Rosson declined to say exactly when and where it was found.
Camacho was being held without bail pending his next court appearance, records show.

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UPDATED: Man stabbed to death in Rowland Heights

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A Rowland Heights man died early Saturday after he was stabbed by his sister’s boyfriend during an argument, authorities said.
Benjamin Cervantes died at a hospital shortly after the stabbing, which took place just before 1:30 a.m. at a home in the 1400 block of Gloriosa Avenue, Deputy Irys Alvarez of the Sheriff’s Headquarters Bureau said in a written statement. He was 32  years old, coroner’s officials said.
His alleged killer, 30-year-old Albert Camacho of Ontario, was booked on suspicion of murder, according to sheriff’s officials and county booking records.
“Detectives have learned that the suspect and the victim were involved in an argument which escalated with the suspect stabbing the victim several times in the upper torso,” Alvarez said.
The wounded man was taken to Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center where he succumbed to his injuries a short time later, Los Angeles County Department of Coroner Investigator Joyce Kato.
Camacho fled the scene but was ultimately arrested just after noon, Alvarez said.  Further details of how where Camacho was arrested were not available.
Neighbors described Cervantes as a friendly and well-liked man, but added that he and Camacho did not get along.
According to county booking records, Camacho was being held in lieu of $1 million bail pending a scheduled arraignment Tuesday in West Covina Superior Court
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PHOTOS: Crime lab technicians work at the scene of a fatal stabbing in the 1400 block of Gloriosa Avenue on Saturday, Aug. 17, 2013.
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Rowland Heights man accused of four-month tagging spree

ROWLAND HEIGHTS – A 19-year-old Rowland Heights man pleaded no contest Tuesday to three counts of felony vandalism in connection with an alleged four-month graffiti spree, authorities said.
Deputies arrested Vicente Christoph Haro about 6:30 a.m. Friday after a tipster reported seeing him scrawling graffiti at Colima Road and Paso Real Avenue, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. Christopher Blasnek said.
Haro was still at the scene when deputies arrived and discovered he had vandalized a bus bench, a wall and a utility box, the lieutenant said. And the marks he scrawled were familiar to officials, who had seen similar graffiti in the area over since December.
He’s accused of causing more than $2,500 worth of damage during his “bombing runs,” a slang term for scrawling graffiti on multiple spots at the same time, Blasnek said.
He appeared in court Tuesday, where prosecutors charged him with eight counts of felony vandalism, Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office spokeswoman Jane Robison said.
He pleaded no contest to three counts at his initial court appearance, she said. The remaining five counts of felony vandalism were expected to be dismissed at his sentencing, scheduled for Friday.

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