Police checkpoint planned tonight in San Gabriel

SAN GABRIEL — Police are planning a sobriety and driver’s license checkpoint tonight, officials said.
The checkpoint will be held from 7 p.m. this evening through 3 a.m. Sunday morning at an undisclosed location within San Gabriel, San Gabriel police officials said in a written statement.
Funding for the checkpoint is being provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

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Arcadia woman arrested after lengthy chase across the San Gabriel Valley

SAN GABRIEL — An Arcadia woman is accused of leading San Gabriel police and a high speed chase that traversed the San Gabriel Valley twice over more than an hour late Saturday, authorities said.
Jennifer McElhaney, 25, was booked on suspicion of auto theft and felony evading of police after she was ultimately ditched the car and was found hiding in a residential neighborhood in Covina, San Gabriel police Lt. Tony Hernandez said.
The incident began when San Gabriel police officer spotted a car that had been reported stolen parked in the parking lot of a CVS Pharmacy at San Gabriel Boulevard and Las Tunas Drive, Hernandez said.
Officers watched as a woman, later identified as McElhaney, got into the car and began driving, he said.
“We attempted to conduct a traffic stop on the vehicle,” Hernandez said. “She fled.”
The chase reached speeds in excess of 100 mph at times as McElhaney led officers down the 10, 101, 110 and 210 Freeways to Pasadena, he said.
McElhaney then headed east on the 210 Freeway, exited Vernon Avenue in Azusa and continued on surface streets through Covina and West Covina, Hernandez said.
She managed to get back on the 210 Freeway and headed back to Pasadena, before again turning around and driving back into Covina, police said.
The car chase came to an end when McElhaney abandoned the car in the 200 block of Benbow Street in Covina and continued to flee on foot, Hernandez said. She was found hiding in the area a little more than 20 minutes later.
According to county booking records, McElhaney was being held in lieu of $130,500 bail pending her initial court appearance, scheduled Tuesday in Alhambra Superior Court.

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Detectives investigate death of woman at East San Gabriel home

EAST SAN GABRIEL — Sheriff’s and coroner’s investigators are looking into the death of an elderly woman whose body was found inside a home.
Though an autopsy was pending, foul play was not initially suspected, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Capt. Christopher Nee said.
The body of the woman, initially described only as elderly, was discovered about 8 p.m. in a house in the 5900 block of North Del Loma Avenue, in the unincorporated county area of East San Gabriel, Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials said in a written statement.
She had not been identified Saturday, as the body was already in a state of decomposition when found, Los Angeles County Department of Coroner Lt. Larry Dietz said.
A woman who lives at the home had not been seen for several weeks when concerned neighbors called the sheriff’s Temple Station and asked deputies to check on her, sheriff’s and coroner’s officials said.
Deputies discovered the body and summoned homicide investigators, who determined the death appeared to be due to natural causes, Nee said. Coroner’s investigators will perform an examination to determine the woman’s officials cause of death.

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Officials: Suspect shot by El Monte police in San Gabriel backed truck toward police

SAN GABRIEL — A man shot and wounded by El Monte police at the end of a pursuit in San Gabriel was backing a stolen delivery truck toward officers when they opened fire, authorities said Saturday.
The name of the suspect wounded in Friday’s 4:40 a.m. shooting on Leslie Drive, just west of San Marino Avenue in San San Gabriel, was not released by investigators. A second suspect not identified by authorities was also arrested in connection with the alleged truck theft.
Prior to the officer-involved shooting, officials said the two suspects stole a large box truck that was making a delivery to a 7-Eleven store in the 12100 block of Ramona Boulevard in El Monte, officials said.
El Monte police spotted the truck on the 10 Freeway and began a pursuit when it failed to pull over, Deputy Peter Gomez of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Headquarters Bureau said in a written statement. The truck exited the freeway at Temple City Boulevard and crashed into several parked cars as the chase continued through Rosemead.
The truck briefly came to a stop on Guess Street, at which point one of the suspects got out and surrendered to police, Gomez said. But the other suspect then continued driving, leading officers into San Gabriel.
“When the suspect turned onto West Leslie Drive in San Gabriel, he stopped the stolen truck when he saw spike strips had been deployed,” according to Gomez. “The officers ordered the suspect to turn the vehicle off numerous times. The suspect did not comply and instead put the truck in reverse and started backing toward the officers, trying to hit them. At that time an officer-involved shooting took place.”
The wounded suspect was hospitalized in stable condition, while the other suspect was booked at the El Monte Police Department.
No officers were injured, officials said.

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Suspect shot by El Monte police in San Gabriel

El Monte police shot and wounded a suspect in San Gabriele arly Friday after he led them on a pursuit in a stolen delivery truck, authorities said.
The officer-involved shooting took place about 4:40 a.m. at San Marino Avenue and Leslie Drive, Deputy Don Walker of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Headquarters Bureau said in a written statement.
The suspect was hospitalized and expected to survive, officials said.
No officers were injured in the incident, Walker said.
The suspect had allegedly stolen a large box truck from a 7-Eleven store in the 12100 block of Ramona Boulevard in El Monte, officials said. Officers spotted the truck on the 10 Freeway, initiating a pursuit that ended at the scene of the shooting in San Gabriel.
Information regarding what prompted police to open fire was not available early Friday as the investigation continued.
Detectives from the Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau were spearheading the investigation, as is standard procedure in officer-involved shootings involving Los Angeles County police agencies.

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VIDEO: Alhambra burlgary suspects arrested, driver possibly carjacked in San Gabriel

See VIDEO

Alhambra police are seeking a possible carjacking victim after arresting four burglary suspects earlier this week, officials said.
The incident, part of which was captured by a police car’s dashboard camera, began about 11 a.m. Tuesday when officers responded to a report of a residential break-in in the 500 block of West Ramona Road, Alhambra police officials said in a written statement.
Four suspects were jailed on suspicion of burglary in connection with the incident, however police were hoping to track down a motorist who was possibly carjacked by one of the suspects, but left the scene before police could speak with him, Alhambra police Sgt. Jerry Johnson said.
The four suspects fled in a car before patrol officers arrived, however they were spotted and followed by a Pasadena Police Department helicopter, Johnson said.
With the helicopter-based officers watching, the fleeing vehicle drove to the area of Del Mar Avenue and Valley Boulevard, “where they exited the car and the four suspects fled in four different directions,” Johnson said.
One of the fleeing suspects — later identified as 18-year-old Donald Trotter of Los Angeles — got into the passenger seat of a blue or gray car occupied by an older Asian man, the sergeant said.
The vehicle began driving, however it was not clear Sunday whether the driver willingly gave the young man a ride without realizing he was fleeing from police, or was ordered to drive by the suspect, which would bring an additional charge of carjacking.
As a dashboard video camera rolled, a responding Alhambra police officer was heading toward the area when he spotted the blue-gray vehicle, officials said.
The burglary suspect exited the car and jumped into a nearby wash, injuring himself in the process, Johnson said.
“He fell about 30 feet and broke his ankle pretty badly,” he said. The suspect was quickly taken into custody, as were the other three.
Meanwhile, the driver of the blue-gray car also exited the vehicle and began pointing police toward the suspect, authorities added.
“The male Asian then left the scene before officers could interview him,” according to the police statement.
The older man was not suspected of participating in the burglary, police added, but officers wanted to talk to him to determined whether he was the victim of carjacking.
“He was either duped, or a victim. Either way, we’d like to know,” Johnson said.
In addition to Trotter, police arrested Steve Gainer, 29, of Paramount; Morgan Gardner, 19, of Downey; and a 17-year-old Los Angeles boy, Johnson said. All were booked on suspicion of burglary as the investigation into potential additional charges continued.
According to county booking records, Gardner was released from jail Tuesday on $50,000 bail pending her initial court appearance, while Gainer was released Thursday after posting $56,000 bail. Trotter was hospitalized for treatment of his ankle injury prior to booking.
Anyone with information was asked to contact Alhambra police Detective Corey Fukumoto at 626-308-4845.

VIDEO courtesy of the Alhambra Police Department

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Man sought for attempted kidnapping of teenage girl in San Gabriel

SAN GABRIEL — Police are seeking a man who tried to kidnap a 16-year-old girl from the front of a family member’s home earlier this week, authorities said.
The girl escaped unharmed from the man, who grabbed onto her 9 p.m. Tuesday in the 1900 block of South Jackson Avenue, near Ramona Boulevard, San Gabriel police Lt. Brian Kott said.
Prior to the incident, she had been sitting on the east curb of Jackson Avenue near the home of a family member, police said in a written statement. She saw the suspect pass by her in his car, make a U-turn and pull over along the east curb.
The man got out of his car, and the girl became worried for her safety and began walking back to her family member’s home, which was beyond the man’s parked car, officials said.
“As the victim walked past the suspect, he stated, ‘You need to come with me,’ while simultaneously opening the rear passenger door of the vehicle,” according to the police statement.
“The suspect then forcible grabbed the victim by the collar, causing her to fall to the ground,” the statement continued. “As the victim tried to get back up, the suspect continued to grab at the victim’s feet while she kicked and struggled to get away.”
After breaking free of the man’s grasp, the ran back to her relative’s home, officials said, noting that the man followed beside her in his car for a short distance.
“No weapon was used or seen,” Kott said.
The lieutenant described the attacker as a Latino man in his late-30s, about 6 feet tall and of thin build. He had dark, wavy, shoulder-length hair and he wore a black jacket and blue jeans with holes in them.
He was driving a late-1990s-model black, four-door NIssan with tinted windows and chrome rims, Kott added.
While there was no indication Tuesday’s failed kidnapping was directly related to any other crime, Kott said it was worth noting that several other kidnappings and attempting kidnappings have been reported in the region over recent months, including incidents in Whittier and the San Fernando Valley.
Anyone with information on the San Gabriel incident was asked to contact San Gabriel police Detective Joseph Pelano at 626-308-2836, or the department’s dispatch center at 626-308-2828

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Toddler struck by SUV in East San Gabriel

EAST SAN GABRIEL — Paramedics rushed a 2-year-old girl to the hospital in unknown condition Saturday after she was struck by an SUV on a residential street in the unincorporated county area of East San Gabriel, authorities said.
The incident was reported just after 5:10 p.m. in the 8900 block of Naomi Avenue, according to California Highway Patrol logs.
The child was conscious and alert when transported to the hospital, Los Angeles County Fire Department Capt. Tim Bushrow said.
“The extent of the injuries won’t be known until she gets a full examination at the emergency room,” the captain said.
The driver of the SUV, a woman estimated to be in her 50s or 60s, remained at the scene and appeared to be cooperating with investigators, Bushrow added.
Both sheriff’s deputies and CHP officers responded to the scene of the collision, however the investigation was being handled by the Altadena office of the CHP.
The cause and circumstances of the collision remained under investigation, officials said, however reduced visibility due to sun glare was initially believed to be a factor.

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FBI: San Gabriel man skips out on sentencing after admitting more than $11 million in fraud

The FBI is seeking a San Gabriel man who failed to show up for his sentencing Monday after pleading guilty to defrauding dozens of families of more than $11 million.
David Kaup, 29, pleaded guilty in federal court to two counts of wire fraud April 9, FBI officials said in a written statement.
He admitted taking part in three separate schemes using the business names Lunden Investments, American Loans and Funding and First Mortgage West, officials said.
“Kaup admitted in his plea agreement that over a period of approximately five years, he defrauded more than 50 families out of more than $11 million,” according to the FBI statement. “Many of these victims were working class families who sought Kaup’s assistance in refinancing their homes.”
Through Lunden Investments, authorities said, Kaup solicited more than $9 million from investors, telling them them he was using the money to fund commercial loans.
“Kaup admitted in his plea, however, that he instead lost approximately $9 million of the victims’ money trading on the foreign currency exchange market,” according to the FBI statement.
Through the other two companies, ALF and FMW, Kaup tricked homeowners into sending him money by promising to help them refinance their homes at below-market rates, officials said. He told the victims he needed an up-front payment to demonstrate that they were financially qualified, which would be returned to them upon approval or denial of their loans.
But instead, officials said, Kaup used the money to buy luxury items for himself and trade on the foreign currency exchange market.
While carrying out the schemes, Kaup used the aliases David Smith and David Martinez, according to the FBI.
He’s described as 5 feet 11 inches tall, 190 pounds, with black hair and brown eyes. He’s been known to work as disc jockey in the Los Angeles and Las Vegas areas using the moniker, “New Age Dave.”
Anyone with information is asked to contact the FBI’s Los Angeles office at 888-226-8443.

PHOTO of David Kaup courtesy of the FBI.

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School placed on lockdown after auto theft suspect flees from deputies in Temple City

TEMPLE CITY — Officials cordoned off a neighborhood and placed a school on lockdown Thursday morning as they hunted for an auto theft suspect.
The incident began about 8 a.m. when deputies spotted a stolen truck near an apartment complex in the 5300 block of Rosemead Boulevard, near Broadway, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. Ignacio Somoano said. The driver exited the truck and ran.
Deputies set up a search perimeter of about two blocks in the area southwest of Rosemead Boulevard and Broadway, the lieutenant said.
Nearby San Gabriel Academy, just across the city border in an unincorporated county area near San Gabriel, was placed on lockdown as a precaution, he added.
The suspects was described as a Latino man in his 20s, about 5 feet 8 inches tall, wearing a blue sweater, black short and a blue bandana on his head.

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