SANTA FE SPRINGS >> A man and teen face murder charges in connection with the alleged gang-related slaying of a 23-year-old Commerce man at a Santa Fe Springs park last week, authorities announced Thursday.
Daniel Charles Esquer, 27, and Marcus Rene “Spunky” Garcia, 17, are each charged with murder for the April 5 fatal shooting of Anthony Palomares at Friendship Park, at Telegraph Road and Bartley Avenue, according to Los Angeles County District Attorney’s officials and county booking records. Garcia is being charged as an adult.
Whittier police officials described both suspects as transients with ties to Pico Rivera area.
The shooting took place about 6:30 p.m., Whittier police officials said in a written statement.
“Witnesses reported seeing two suspects approach the victim and soon thereafter, one suspect produced a handgun and shot the victim,” according to the statement.
Palomares died at a hospital the next day of a gunshot wound to the head, according to the Los Angeles County Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner.
Police initially sought as many as three suspects witnesses reported seeing running from the scene.
Officers detained two men in the area and arrested them in connection with the shooting.
Cruz Bermudez, 27, of Santa Fe Springs and Adam Giavelli, 27, of Pico Rivera, were ultimately released without charges related to the shooting, booking records show. But police re-arrested Bermudez in connection with a different cases being held without bail.
Continued investigation led police to find and arrest Esquer on suspicion of murder April 7, police said. Investigators arrested Garcia Tuesday.
“The motive appears to be a disagreement between the suspects and the victim,” according to the police statement. “(The) victim and suspects knew each other prior to the shooting.”
Both suspects are charged with murder, along with the special allegations that the crime was gang-related, and that in involved a handgun, according to the felony complaint filed against them in Los Angeles County Superior Court. Esquer is accused of pulling the trigger.
he formal charges were filed Monday.
Esquer and Garcia both pleaded not guilty at an arraignment hearing Thursday. They are scheduled to appear in Norwalk Superior Court April 26 for a preliminary hearing setting, district attorney’s office spokeswoman Sarah Ardalani said.
Anyone with information can reach Whittier police at 562-567-9200. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.
SANTA FE SPRINGS >> A Colton man is accused of drunken driving after crashing his Cadillac into a California Highway Patrol SUV as officers were assisting a family in a disabled car along the 605 Freeway in Santa Fe Springs early Sunday, authorities said.
One CHP officers suffered minor injuries in the crash, which took place just after 1:50 a.m. on the right shoulder of the northbound 605 Freeway, just north of Telegraph Road, Officer B. Axt of the CHP’s Santa Fe Springs area office said in a written statement.
Clarence Williams, 38, is suspected of DUI in connection with the crash, according to the CHP.
Two officers were helping two women, ages 45 and 21, and two children after their 2012 Jeep broke down, CHP Officer Monica Posada said.
“Williams drove his (1998 Cadillac Seville) onto the right shoulder, subsequently colliding with the rear of the CHP unit,” Axt said. “This propelled the CHP unit forward, colliding with the disabled vehicle.
“The disabled vehicle then struck one of the CHP officers, causing minor injuries as he was thrown to the ground,” Axt continued.
The woman and children inside the Jeep suffered no injuries, thanks, in part, to the use of seat belts, officials said.
Officials issued a Sig Alert for about one hour affecting the two right-hand lanes of the northbound 605 Freeway as they investigated the scene.
PHOTO courtesy of the CHP.
SANTA FE SPRINGS >> The California Highway Patrol invites members of the community to sit down with officers for coffee Tuesday in Santa Fe Springs.
The “Coffee With a Cop” event will begin at 7 a.m. at Cherri’s Donuts, 10017 Orr and Day Road, according to Officer Al Perez of the CHP’s Santa Fe Springs area office.
“‘Coffee with a Cop’ is an open invitation for community members to ask questions and learn more about the department’s work in Los Angeles County,” Perez said in a written statement.
“I invite community members to drop in, if only for a few minutes,” added Capt. David Moeller. “Ask questions and address concerns; share criticisms and appreciation; or simply get to know our officers. Be part of the conversation that improves our community partnership.”
For more information, contact Officer Perez at 562-868-0503, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
SANTA FE SPRINGS >> Police are seeking a robber who followed a Santa Fe Springs woman home before robbing her at her doorstep earlier this month.
The crime took place about 10 a.m. March 5, Whittier police officials said in a written statement.
“We believe the suspect followed the victim from the area of Norwalk Boulevard and Imperial Highway (in Norwalk) driving a two-door, 1995-2000 red Dodge Avenger with no hubcaps,” according to the statement.
When the woman arrived home, the robber accosted her at her doorstep and robber her of her purse, police said.
Authorities described the robber as a black man in his early-30s, about 6 feet tall, of thin build, with a short beard.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Whittier police Detective Wolfe at 562-409-1850, or call the Whittier Police Department’s tip hotline at 562-567-9299.
PHOTO of suspect vehicle courtesy of the Whittier Police Department.
SANTA FE SPRINGS >> Coroner’s officials have released the identity of a 31-year-old worker killed Tuesday in an explosion and fire at a Santa Fe Springs hair care product distribution company.
Ji Hoon Oh died at the scene of the massive fire Tuesday afternoon at Innosys Beauty Care Inc., 10015 Pioneer Blvd., Los Angeles County Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner officials said. His city of residence was unclear.
The rest of the employees managed to escape the fast-spreading fire without serious injuries, Santa Fe Springs Fire Department Chief Michael Crook said. One firefighter and one employee were treated for minor injuries.
The cause of the fire remained under investigation pending the results of laboratory analysis of samples of products collected at the gutted warehouse, Crook said.
Oh’s cause of death was also yet to be determined by coroner’s investigators, officials said.
Representatives of IBC could not be reached for comment.
The facility is in the business of receiving, repackaging and distributing hair care products.
Firefighters described the business, consisting of a warehouse and office, a total loss. But firefighters kept the intense flames from spreading to other businesses adjoined to the same building.
SANTA FE SPRINGS >> A man suffered wounds to his hand and wrist in a shooting near the Santa Fe Springs Athletic Fields Friday, police said.
The shooting took place about 7 p.m. as a 27-year-old Santa Fe Springs man was alongside the park, at Pioneer Boulevard and Alburtis Avenue, Whittier police officials said.
The victim was struck in the wrist and hand, Lt. Terry McAllister said. He was taken to a hospital for treatment of wounds not considered to be life-threatening.
The attacker or attackers fled the area in a small, black, four-door car, which was last seen speeding north on Jersey Avenue from Pioneer Boulevard, the lieutenant said.
The motive in the shooting remained unclear. No further details were available.
PHOTO courtesy of the Whittier Police Department
SANTA FE SPRINGS >> Police jailed two men and a woman late Wednesday in connection with an armed robbery at a Santa Fe Springs liquor store.
The heist took place about 8:20 p.m. in the 11000 block of Washington Boulevard, Whittier police officials said.
Responding police officers spotted the suspects fleeing the area and tried to pull it over, officials said.
“The suspects attempted to flee, but crashed into parked car in the 8300 block of Vanport (Avenue),” police said in a written statement. The handgun used in the robbery, as well as cash, were recovered from the vehicle.
Arrested were Matthew Hoge, 22, of Montebello; Willie Jefferson, 20, of Long Beach; and Shauntel Jewel Peterson, 18, of Long Beach, according to police and Los Angeles County booking records.
Hoge was released from custody early Thursday pending his initial court appearance after posting $50,000 bail, records show. Jefferson was being held in lieu of 75,000 bail, while Peterson was being held with a bail of $50,000.
SANTA FE SPRINGS >> Coroners officials have released the name of a Los Angeles man who died in a fiery solo-car crash on a freeway transition road in Santa Fe Springs last week.
Edward Yong Kim, 24, died at the scene of the 4:30 a.m. Nov. 8 crash on the transition road connecting the northbound 605 Freeway to the northbound 5 Freeway, Ed Winter, assistant chief of operations at the Los Angeles County Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner said.
His identification was delayed to the burned condition of his remains, officials said. He was ultimately identified through dental records.
CHP officers responded to reports of a car on fire when they came upon a burning 2008 Mitsubishi sedan that had crashed into a police supporting an overhead sign, according to CHP and coroner officials.
Firefighters extinguished the flames before Kim was found inside the wreckage and pronounced dead at 4:50 a.m., officials said.
Any witnesses are asked to contact Officer R. Johnson of the CHP’s Santa Fe Springs area office at 562-868-0503.
SANTA FE SPRINGS >> Police are seeking a man caught on surveillance camera trashing a Santa Fe Springs liquor store and attacking the clerk with a coffee mug earlier this week after the clerk refused to let the man use his cell phone, officials said.
The bizarre rampage, which was caught on surveillance video, took place about 7:50 p.m. Monday at Bruce’s Liquors, 12623 Imperial Highway, Whittier police Officer John Scoggins said in a written statement.
•VIDEO: Suspect attacker Santa Fe Springs liquor store clerk
The suspect walked up to the clerk, a man of about 60 years old, and asked to use his cell phone, the officer said.
“When the clerk refused, the suspect went into a rage and destroyed the cash register and several other items on the counter,” Scoggins said. “He then picked up a porcelain mug and threw it, striking the clerk in the head.”
The clerk was treated at a local hospital for minor injuries, police said. The attacker fled and remained at large Thursday.
Police described the attacker as a white or Latino man in his 20s, about 5 feet 5 inches tall, wearing a black hooded sweatshirt, gray jeans and black Adidas tennis shoes.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Whittier police Detective Rob Wolfe at 562-409-1869. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.
VIDEO/PHOTO courtesy of the Whittier Police Department
SANTA FE SPRINGS >> A man died early Sunday in a fiery solo-car crash on a transition road between the 605 and 5 freeways in Santa Fe Springs, officials said.
The crash took place about 4:30 a.m. on the transition road from the northbound 605 Freeway to the northbound 5 Freeway, Officer R. Johnson of the California Highway Patrol’s Santa Fe Springs office said in a written statement.
A 2008 Mitsubishi sedan had crashed into a pole supporting an overhead freeway sign, CHP and coroner’s officials said.
“CHP personnel were unable to determine whether the vehicle was occupied due to it being fully engulfed in flames,” Johnson said.
“Santa Fe Springs Fire Department Engine No. 84 arrived on scene, extinguished the fire and determined the vehicle was occupied by one person,” Johnson said. “The person was pronounced deceased at the scene.”
The victim remained unidentified Sunday, official said.
Any witnesses or others with information are asked to contact the CHP’s Santa Fe Springs area office at 562-868-0503.