Covina man killed in Rowland Heights motorcycle crash


A Covina man died in a Saturday night motorcycle crash on Colima Road in Rowland Heights, authorities said.
The identity of the motorcyclist, described by the California Highway Patrol as a 33-year-old Covina man, was not yet released by coroner’s officials on Sunday.
The solo-vehicle crash took place about 10:40 p.m. on Colima Road, just west of Fairway Drive, Officer R. Finfrock of the California Highway Patrol’s Santa Fe Springs-area office said in a written statement.
He said the man was riding a 2009 Harley-Davidson Softail Deluxe east on Colima, “at a high rate of speed,” when the motorcycle struck the center median.
“The collision with the center median caused (the rider) to be ejected form the motorcycle and the motorcycle to overturn,” according to Finfrock. “At this time, no other vehicles have been determined to have been involved in this traffic collision.”
Paramedics took the injured motorcyclist to Pomona Valley Medical Center, where he succumbed to his injuries at 1:17 a.m. Sunday, Finfrock said.
The crash remains under investigation. Anyone with information can reach the CHP’s Santa Fe Springs-area office at 562-868-0503.

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$50 million worth of marijuana uprooted from 2 Industry warehouses; 8 men arrested

INDUSTRY >> Deputies seized more than 16,000 marijuana plants, valued at more than $50 million, and arrested eight men while raiding two warehouses in Industry on Thursday morning, authorities said.
The bust took place about 9:30 a.m. at two separate warehouses in the 1100 block of Fullerton Road, just north of the 60 Freeway, Deputy Trina Schrader of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department’s Information Bureau said in a written statement.
Deputies began an investigation about two months ago based on a tip of possible illegal activity going on inside the warehouses, Schrader said.
Investigators from the sheriff’ Special Assignment Team obtained a two-location search warrant for the two warehouses. They showed up to serve the warrants Thursday morning.
“A sophisticated indoor marijuana grow operation was discovered at both locations,” Schrader said.
“There were over 16,000 marijuana plants seized,” she said. “The street value of the marijuana seized is over $50 million.”
Eight men were arrested during the raids on suspicion of cultivating marijuana, officials said.
They were described as residents of San Gabriel and Rowland Heights between 35 and 50 years old, according to Schrader. Detectives withheld their identities Thursday as they continued following investigative leads.
No money or weapons were seized during the raid, Schrader added.
Anyone with information is urged to contact the sheriff’s Industry Station at 626-330-3322. Tups may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.
The raid was the second high-value marijuana bust reported in the central San Gabriel Valley since Tuesday.
El Monte police investigators, originally seeking a stolen Lexus, discovered a concentrated marijuana, or “honey oil” lab on Tuesday in the 14700 block of Horticultural Drive in neighboring Hacienda Heights. Investigators seized $1.8 million worth of marijuana and concentrated marijuana products and arrested five men.
The two busts occurred about 7 miles away from one another. Sheriff’s officials released no information regarding whether the two investigations may be related.

PHOTOS courtesy of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department

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Gunman robs Rowland Heights Daiso Japan store


ROWLAND HEIGHTS >> For the second time in just over a month, a gunman carried out a robbery at a Rowland Heights Daiso Japan store late Thursday, officials said.
The heist took place about 7:30 p.m. at the variety store, 19715 Colima Road, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. David Buckner said.
A man entered the store brandishing a handgun and demanded money from a woman working behind the cash register, he said.
The employee complied, and the robber fled with an undetermined amount of money, according to the lieutenant. No one was hurt.
The robber was last seen heading south on Colima Road in a white pickup truck. Deputies described him as a Latino man of about 5 feet 10 inches tall, wearing a black hat, a green shirt and tan pants.
The same store was robbed June 4 in what investigators suspected was an inside job, sheriff’s officials said. Deputies arrested an alleged gunman, a teenage getaway driver and a store employee accused of being in on the robbery shortly after the crime.
Anyone with information can reach the sheriff’s Walnut-Diamond Bar Station at 626-913-1715. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.

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Man sought in Rowland Heights motel robbery


ROWLAND HEIGHTS >> A gunman fled with cash after robbing a Rowland Heights motel early Tuesday, officials said.
The crime unfolded just before 3:30 a.m. at Motel 6, 18970 Labin Court, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Sgt. James Eggers said.
A man entered the lobby of the motel, brandished a handgun and demanded money before fleeing with an undisclosed amount of cash.
He was last seen leaving the area on foot.
Anyone with information can reach the sheriff’s Walnut-Diamond Bar Station at 626-913-1715. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.

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Driver carjacked at knifepoint in Rowland Heights

ROWLAND HEIGHTS >> A “heavily tattooed” knife-wielding carjacker forced a man to drive him a short distance before fleeing in the victim’s car in Rowland Heights on Thursday, officials said.
The unfolded about 7 a.m., Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. David Buckner said. The victim, a man in his mid-40s, was uncertain where exactly he was in Rowland Heights when the carjacker climbed into his car and brandished a knife, but it was in the vicinity of La Cueva Drive.
Buckner said the carjacker ordered the victim to drive to a residential neighborhood in the 1800 block of Camino Viejo in Rowland Heights.
Once there, the man ordered the victim out of the white, 2000 Mitsubishi Galant and drove away, Buckner said. No injuries were reported.
Officials described the carjacker as a Latino man of about 40 years old, “heavily tattooed,” of a heavy build, with a shaved head.
Anyone with information can reach the sheriff’s Walnut-Diamond Bar Station at 626-913-1715. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.

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UPDATED: Young Rowland Heights woman found safe after vanishing under suspicious circumstances

ROWLAND HEIGHTS >> Detectives are investigating the disappearance of an 18-year-old Rowland Heights woman who vanished under suspicious circumstances while on her way to school early Friday before being , authorities said.
Cristal Flores left her home Friday morning en route for Rowland High School, 2000 S. Otterbein Ave., Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. David Buckner said. But she never arrived.
Friends notified the girl’s family shortly before 8 a.m. that Flores had called them and made alarming statements.
The exact phrasing was not clear, but Flores was believed to have said something about being followed by a possibly armed person or people, according to the lieutenant. Her location at the time of the phone calls was unknown.
No further details were available.
Loved ones circulated fliers with Flores’ photo on Friday, both in the community and online.
Flores was found safe late Friday night, sheriff’s officials said. No further information was available Saturday as detectives from the sheriff’s Major Crimes Bureau continued their investigation.
Anyone with information can reach the sheriff’s Walnut-Diamond Bar Station at 626-913-1715. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.

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Rowland Heights woman missing for more than 2 months

ROWLAND HEIGHTS >> Authorities are seeking the public’s help in finding a 34-year-old Rowland Heights woman who’s been missing for two-and-a-half months.
Chuanshuang “Jona” Yang was last heard from about 8 p.m. on Dec. 28, when she spoke with a friend on the phone, Deputy Trina Schrader of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Information Bureau said in a written statement.
She has not been seen or heard from since, Schrader said. “Her family and friends are very concerned and are asking for the public’s assistance.”
Yang is Asian, 5 feet 1 inch tall, 86 pounds, with black hair and brown eyes. She drives a white, 2014 Toyota Corolla with a California license plate 7GMD392.
Anyone with information is asked to contact the sheriff’s Homicide Bureau’s Missing Persons Unit at 323-890-5500. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.

PHOTOS courtesy of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department

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Six suspects jailed in San Gabriel Valley robbery, carjacking spree

LA PUENTE >> Deputies arrested six suspects in a series of San Gabriel Valley robberies and carjackings after they crashed a just-stolen car in Chino late Tuesday, authorities said.
The incident began just after 9:10 p.m. when a woman was carjacked in front of a home in the 800 block of Greycliff Avenue, according to Deputy Juanita Navarro-Suarez of the Los Angeles County sheriff’s Information Bureau.
The woman told deputies she had just arrived home when she was confronted by a group of carjackers, “one of whom was armed with a baseball bat,” Navarro-Suarez said in a written statement.
The carjackers threatened to retrieve a handgun if the woman refused to turn over her vehicle, and she complied out of fear for her safety, the deputy said. The group of carjackers then fled in her car.
Deputies spotted the carjacked vehicle moments later in the area of the 60 Freeway and Fullerton Road in Industry, she said. They initially gave chase on the 60 Freeway, but soon cancelled the chase and followed the fleeing vehicle via helicopter only “due to excessive speeds,” Navarro-Suarez said.
The vehicle continued speeding east before ultimately crashing at Euclid and Merrill avenues in Chino. All six suspects ran from the crashed car but were soon apprehended by deputies during a search of the area.
Brian Mendez, a 20 year-old national of El Salvador and Christian Lucero, an 18 year-old national of Honduras, were booked on suspicion of carjacking, officials said. They were being held in lieu of $100,000 bail each.
Four juvenile suspects, two boys and two girls, were also arrested and taken to a juvenile hall, Navarro-Suarez said. They were described as nationals of El Salvador, Mexico and Honduras.
While continuing their investigation, deputies noticed a second car parked near the scene of the La Puente carjacking which had been reported stolen in Texas, where all six suspects are believed to live, according to Navarro-Suarez.
“It is believed that the six suspects abandoned the stolen vehicle during the time of the carjacking,” she added.
The stolen car from Texas matched the description of one used in a series of recent robberies in the La Puente and Rowland Heights areas, officials said.
Further details regarding the spate of robberies were not available late Wednesday.
The investigation was ongoing.

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Services planned for Baldwin Park man killed in Diamond Bar crash

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DIAMOND BAR >> Services have been scheduled for a 33-year-old Baldwin Park man who died last week when the car he was riding in with his wife was rear-ended by a pickup truck on the transition road between the 60 and 57 freeways.
Rodolfo “Rudy” Enrique Fuentes III died at the scene of the collision, which took place just before 5:50 a.m. on the westbound lanes of the 60 Freeway, where it merges with the 57 Freeway near Grand Avenue in Diamond Bar, according to California Highway Patrol and Los Angeles County coroner’s officials.
Visitation will be held from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Jan. 13 at the Queen of Heaven Cemetery and Mortuary, 2161 S. Fullerton Road.
A funeral will be held from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. on Jan. 14 at the same location, followed immediately by a graveside service.
Fuentes’ mother, Annamarie Fuentes, thanked the community for its compassion over the past difficult week.
“The love and support has been tremendous,” she said. “We as a family appreciate all the kindness and love we have received by all.”
Fuentes’ wife was riding as a passenger in the 2007 Honda Civic when it was struck from behind by a Ford F-150 pickup truck, CHP officials and family members said. She was treated for non-life-threatening injuries.
The driver and passenger of the pickup truck declined medical treatment, CHP Officer Rodrigo Jimenez said.
The cause of the crash remains under investigation by the CHP’s Baldwin Park-area office.

PHOTO: Rodolfo “Rudy” Enrique Fuentes III. (Courtesy)

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Rowland Heights woman guilty of manslaughter for fatal scissor attack

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ROWLAND HEIGHTS >> A Rowland Heights woman is expected to receive a 12-year prison sentence next month after pleading “no contest” Wednesday to a manslaughter charge for stabbing her brother’s girlfriend to death with a pair of scissors last year, authorities said.
Lisette Kimberly Moreno, 20, pleaded “no contest” to a charge of voluntary manslaughter for the fatal Aug. 16, 2015, stabbing of Annette Martinez, 21, of Rowland Heights, Los Angeles County District attorney’s officials said in a written statement.
In addition the manslaughter charge, Moreno also admitted to the special allegation that she personally used a weapon, scissors, in the killing.
Following the negotiated plea arrangement, Moreno is expected to receive 12 years in state prison when she returns to the Pomona branch of Los Angeles County Superior Court for sentencing on Nov. 29, according to the statement. Moreno was first charged with murder following her arrest.
If convicted of murder at trial, she could have faced a potential maximum sentence of more than 25 years to life in prison.
Moreno became involved in an argument with Martinez about 2 a.m. as they were at the home of Martinez’s boyfriend’s family in the 1900 block of Batson Avenue.
Information regarding what the dispute was over was not available.
Martinez left behind a then-6-month-old daughter and a then-18-monthold son, family members said.

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PHOTO [TOP] – of Lisette Moreno, 21, of Rowland Heights (Courtesy) [BELOW] – Annette Martinez, 21, of Rowland Heights (Courtesy)

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