SAN GABRIEL >> Police uprooted nearly 7,000 marijuana plants and arrested two men on Wednesday after raiding two separate indoor marijuana grow operations inside the same massive commercial building, officials said.
Investigators showed up with a search warrant about 7 a.m. at the 42,000-square-foot building at 100 S. South Gabriel Blvd., according to San Gabriel police Lt. Brian Kott. The building was formerly used as a major auto dealership.
Officers first discovered an illicit pot farm of about 4,200 plants inside a portion of the property formerly used for auto repairs when the structure was an auto dealership, the lieutenant said in a written statement. The operation was complete with artificial lighting, as well as “sophisticated hydroponic and ventilation systems.”
Phong Day Ung, 36, of Rosemead was found working at the grow operation and arrested on suspicion of cultivating marijuana, Kott said.
“As detectives continued their search of the property, another separate marijuana grow was found hidden inside a building directly under the main office at the northwest portion of the premises,” Kott said.
There were no visible entry points into the grow operation, save for a secret interior passageway to the upstairs office, police said. More than 2.600 pot plants were found growing inside several fabricated rooms inside the second grow site, where 34-year-old Yuntong Zheng of Monterey Park was arrested on suspicion of cultivation of marijuana as he returned to the scene as the investigation continued, Kott said.
It was not clear Wednesday whether the two marijuana grows were linked, or merely a coincidence.
Wednesday’s bust was the result of a two-week-long investigation spawned by an anonymous tip from a citizen, Kott said.
PHOTOS courtesy of the San Gabriel Police Department
SAN GABRIEL >> Police arrested a 37-year-old San Gabriel man on Tuesday after learning of allegations that he had sexually abused a young female relative over the past five years, officials said.
Jcelso Celestino Ombao was booked on suspicion of continuous sexual abuse of a child, as well as other sex-crime related felonies, according to San Gabriel police Lt. Brian Kott.
Police launched their investigation just before 2 p.m. Tuesday after receiving a report from staff at Temple City High School that a 15-year-old female student had been the victim sexual abuse, the lieutenant said.
“During the initial investigation, the victim divulged to officers that she had been sexually abused by an adult male family relative on a frequent and repeated basis within the family home for approximately the past give years,” Kott said in a written statement.
The alleged crimes took place at several home throughout the region, where the family had lived, as well as in San Gabriel in recent months.
Police arrested Ombao and obtained a warrant to search the family home, Jott said. “Evidence was collected that corroborated the victim’s account.”
Anyone with information is asked to contact San Gabriel police at 626-308-2828. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.
SOUTH SAN GABRIEL >> Gunfire in a residential neighborhood in South San Gabriel left one man dead Sunday afternoon, authorities said.
The shooting was reported about 3:15 p.m. in the 7900 block of Hill Drive, in the unincorporated county area, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. Frank Ruiz said.
Paramedics took the victim to a hospital, where he ultimately succumbed to his injuries, according to Deputy Kimberly Alexander of the sheriff’s Information Bureau.
Three people were seen running from the scene of the shooting, Ruiz said. It was not immediately clear whether they were the attackers, or merely other people fleeing the gunfire.
No further details were available as the investigation remained in its early stages.
Anyone with information can reach the sheriff’s Temple City Station at 626-285-7171. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.
SOUTH WHITTIER >> A Pico Rivera man received a seven-year prison sentence for fatally stabbing hid ex-girlfriend’s new boyfriend during a fight in South Whittier in 2015.
George Delgado, 54, pleaded “no contest” to a charge of voluntary manslaughter on Sept. 14 in for the Sept. 26, 2015, stabbing death of 42-year-old Tyler Duran of San Gabriel, Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office spokeswoman Sarah Ardalani said.
The plea was the result of a negotiated plea arrangement, she said. Delgado was initially charged with murder, which carries a minimum sentence of 15 years to life in prison. He pleaded not guilty to the murder charge in October of 2015.
Friday’s sentence was handed down in the Norwalk branch of Los Angeles Court by Judge Joseph R. Porris.
Duran was at his girlfriend’s home in the 13500 block of Trumball Street, in the unincorporated county area of South Whittier, prior to the stabbing, prosectors said in a written statement.
Delgado, the woman’s ex-boyfriend, showed up and confronted the couple, officials said. Duran left, but returned a short time later.
“When Duran came back to the home, he was allegedly faced by Delgado again and the two men got into a fight,” according to the statement. “During the physical struggle, Delgado reportedly stabbed Duran.”
Duran soon succumbed to his wounds at a hospital, officials said.
Delgado fled and was sought as a fugitive for 11 days before he was ultimately captured in Pico Rivera.
PHOTOS: [ABOVE]George Delgado, 54, of Pico Rivera, left, pleaded “no contest” to a manslaughter charge on Friday, Jan. 13, 2017, for the fatal stabbing of Tyron Duran, 42, of San Gabriel, right, during a fight in South Whittier on Sept. 26, 2015. (Photos courtesy of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department and the DMV) [BELOW] Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials investigate in the 13500 block of Trumball Street in South Whittier where Tyron Duran, 42, of San Gabriel, left, was fatally stabbed during a fight on Sept. 26, 2015. (Photo by Brian Day)
SAN GABRIEL >> Two men accused of robbing a San Gabriel cell phone store on Wednesday afternoon led police on a high-speed chase before being cornered and apprehended in Los Angeles, authorities said.
An officer first tried to stop the suspects’ car about 5:51 p.m. for a routine traffic violation in the area of San Gabriel Boulevard, south of Valley Boulevard, San Gabriel Police Lt. Tony Hernandez said.
The driver failed to pull over, instead starting a chase during which he drove recklessly and at high speed down the westbound 10 Freeway, he said.
As the pursuit was ongoing, police received information that the car was believed to have been involved in a robbery that occurred about 5:45 p.m. at a cell phone store in the 800 block of Valley Boulevard, according to the lieutenant.
Two men with at least one gun had entered the store and fled with about 20 phones, he said. It was not immediately clear if cash was also taken.
Officers continued chasing the suspects as they exited the freeway at Mission Road in Los Angeles and crashed into another motorist, Hernandez said. The two suspects abandoned the car and continued to flee on foot. The other driver involved in the crash was unhurt.
The fleeing suspects ran directly into a commercial property enclosed by a 6-foot-tall, razor-wire-topped fence, he said. They surrendered once they realized they were trapped.
The suspects identities were not immediately available.
Police were re-tracing the path of the pursuit late Wednesday in search of items possible tossed from the suspects during the chase, he added.
SAN GABRIEL >> The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children on Wednesday renewed its call for help in finding a 15-year-old San Gabriel girl who disappeared a year ago.
Lisa Duran was last seen on Dec. 7, 2015, in San Gabriel, according to the NCMEC.
“(She) has been missing for a year and the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children is asking for your help to bring her home,” NCMEC officials said in a written statement.
“She may be in the local area or she may have travelled to San Bernardino County,” the statement said.
Duran is described as 5 feet 5 inches tall and about 125 pounds, with black hair and brown eyes.
Anyone with information about Lisa is urged to contact the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children at 800-843-5678, or the San Gabriel Police Department at 626-308-2828.
NORTH SAN GABRIEL >> Two sheriff’s deputies rescued an elderly couple from their burning home in the unincorporated county area of North San Gabriel over the weekend, authorities said.
Both deputies and the two elderly residents of the home were treated for smoke inhalation following the incident, which unfolded about 2 p.m. on Saturday at a home in the 8800 block of Broadway, just west of Rosemead Boulevard, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. Frank Ruiz said.
Deputy Jaqueline Morales and Deputy Orlando “Chuey” Macias were on patrol when they happened to come across a house with smoke emanating from within, the lietenant said.
The deputies immediately went into the home to search for anyone who might be inside, Ruiz said. The move proved potentially life-saving.
As the deputies crawled through the home, beneath the smoke, they encountered an 89-year-old woman with a walker inside, as well as her 87-year-old husband, Ruiz said. Deputies Morales and Macias managed to get the seemingly disoriented residents out of the home.
Both deputies and both resident were taken to hospitals for treatment of smoke inhalation, officials said. The deputies were treated and promptly released. An update on the conditions of the elderly couple was not available Sunday, however their injuries were not initially believed to be life-threatening.
It was determined the blaze ignited as a grease fire in the kitchen, which spread into the wall, Ruiz said. The fire caused an estimated $10,000 worth of damage to the home.
Sheriff’s officials commended the deputies in a written statement.
“The quick actions of Deputy Morales and Deputy Macias, while placing themselves in harms way, undoubtedly saved the lives of this couple,” according to the statement. “ The deputies’ heroism is a reflection of their dedication to the communities served by Temple Station, and the representation of the core values of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department to the highest degree.”
PHOTOS courtesy of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
SAN GABRIEL >> Deputies arrested a man sought in connection with a machete attack on a woman in Altadena after an hour-long neighborhood search near San Gabriel late Wednesday, authorities said.
Authorities had been seeking 45-year-old Gaines Ashley Boyd since late Wednesday morning, when he allegedly struck his roommate in the head with a machete in Altadena and fled the scene, Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials said.
Deputies and Pasadena police spotted Boyd about 9:20 p.m., driving in the 1900 block of East Colorado Boulevard, Pasadena police Lt. John Luna said.
Deputies followed on the ground and via helicopter as Boyd drove a silver Porsche Carrera at high speeds to the 9100 block of Duarte Road in unincorporated East San Gabriel, sheriff’s officials said.
He then exited the car and ran through a nearby apartment complex, prompting deputies to launch a neighborhood search, sheriff’s Lt. Ronald Daily said.
Boyd was found and arrested without a struggle in a residential garage about 10:30 p.m., he said.
He was accused of assault with a deadly weapon in connection with the Altadena machete attack, which unfolded at his home in the 1500 block of East Altadena Drive, sheriff’s Lt. Daniel Stanley said.
The suspect’s roommate, a 45-year-old woman, suffered a serious but not life-threatening head wound in the attack, he said.
The motive was unclear.
According to county booking records, Boyd was being held in lieu of $75,000 bail pending his initial court appearance.
SAN MARINO >> San Marino police jailed a San Gabriel man this on suspicion of identity theft, mail theft and other crimes after catching him with a car filled with hundreds of pieces of stolen mail, checks, identification cards, credit cards, and other identity-theft related materials, police said.
Joseph Kamel, 40, was being held in lieu of $250,000 bail Saturday following his arrest on Thursday evening, according to San Marino police officials and Los Angeles County booking records.
Investigators had been seeking Kamel after he and his car were seen in connection with at least two mail or package thefts in the city dating back to May,San Marino police Sgt. Robert Matthews said.
After spotting Kamel driving through the city, an officers summoned backup and followed him into the 1500 block of Oak Knoll Avenue in Pasadena, where they pulled the car over and detained Kamel without a struggle, police said. He was alone in the black, 2011 Chevrolet Camaro.
“A subsequent investigation revealed Kamel to be in possession of a U.S. Postal service master key, hundreds of pieces of mail addressed to individual persons and businesses across Los Angeles County, over 100 checks that were addressed to other victims, banking statements, U.S. Passports, California Identification cards and Driver Licenses, credit card encoding and skimming devices, and ledgers containing personal and banking information of many other potential victims,” Sgt. Timothy Tebbetts said in a written statement.
Some of the people whose information was recovered from Kamel’s car had already been the victims of identity theft, Matthews said.
It was yet to be determined whether the case would be turned over to federal officials for prosecution, though it appeared likely, Matthews said. Mail theft is a federal crime.
Thursday’s arrest was the latest in series of arrests by area police for alleged large-scale mail and identity theft schemes.
Police in South Pasadena arrested a Highland Park woman on Sept. 3 after finding her driving through town with a treasure trove of stolen mail, documents, mail keys and other theft-related items. Marisa Rae Delgado, 27, is facing federal charges in the case.
And San Marino police in May arrested a mother and daughter for allegedly driving around with stolen mail, a U.S. Postal Service master key and methamphetamine, police said at the time. Estela Castaneda, 48, of Huntington Park and Elizabeth Castaneda, 22, of Rosemead, also face federal charges.
The two San Marino cases appear to be linked, officials said. Kamel posted bail for Elizabeth Castaneda following her arrest in May, officials said. Their relationship was unclear Saturday.
Kamel is scheduled to make his first appearance Tuesday in the Alhambra branch of Los Angeles County Superior Court, records show.
PHOTOS courtesy of the
SAN GABRIEL >> Police arrested a convicted arsonist on suspicion of breaking into a San Gabriel plant nursery early Sunday, less than a month after the same nursery lost $34,000 worth of rare bonsai trees in another burglary, officials said.
Alonzo Delgadillo, 38, of Commerce was arrested in connection with this weekend’s burglary as detectives continued investigating his possible connection to the earlier break-in, San Gabriel police Lt. Riki Nakamura said.
A burglary alarm triggered just before 4 a.m. first brought police to the San Gabriel Nursery & Florist, 632 S. San Gabriel Blvd., according to the lieutenant. The owner also notified police that an intruder was visible remotely on the businesses’ surveillance cameras.
The suspect ran into the surrounding neighborhood as officers arrived, Nakamura said.
San Gabriel officers set up a search perimeter with help from Alhambra, Monterey Park, San Marino and South Pasadena police, he said. Officers and ultimately found Delgadillo hiding in a residential backyard, Nakamura said. They were about to send in a K-9 to apprehend him when he elected to surrender.
It appeared the burglary was interrupted before the suspect managed to steal anything, Nakamura added.
The same nursery was the victim of another break-in on Aug. 8.
“The suspect cut a hole in a chain link fence of the nursery and stole about $34,000 worth of bonsai trees,” Nakamura said.
The nine trees stolen in last months heist were valued between $950 and $5,000 each. The stolen trees have not been recovered.
Detectives had yet to establish a concrete link between the two break-ins, but were looking into the possibility they were releated, Nakamura said.
Delgadillo is already on probation due to a previous arson conviction, officials said.