SAN DIMAS >> Authorities released a suspect sketch and offered a $20,000 reward Wednesday for information leading to the arrest and conviction of gunman who fatally shot a San Dimas sandwich shop owner during a robbery last week.
Investigators also released a suspect sketch in connection with the June 2 shooting a Quiznos restaurant at 1034 Arrow Highway that fatally wounded owner Pravin “Peter” Patel, 62.
“Besides being a husband, a father, a grandfather and a father-in-law, Mr. Patel was the owner of the Quiznos and he is very well respected in the community,” said Lt. Dave Coleman of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau. “Everybody likes him. He was a loving, kind man.”
The unidentified shooter was as a white or Latino man in his early-20s, about 6 feet to 6 feet 1 inch tall and 180 pounds. During the crime, he wore a black T-shirt, plaid shorts and a baseball cap.
“We’re asking for the public’s help,” Coleman said. “Anybody who may have been in the area around 3:20 p.m…. any information that you could provide would be of great assistance to us.”
The office of Los Angeles County Supervisor Michael Antonovich authorized the reward.
Patel was working as usual when the robber entered the sandwich shop, brandished a handgun and demanded money, officials said.
Patel handed over the money from the register to the robber, who threatened to harm the two customers inside the store if he did not, Coleman said. Patel then followed the robber outside.
“As Mr. Patel exited the restaurant, a struggle ensued between he and the suspect,and Mr. Patel was shot and mortally wounded,” Coleman said.
The brazen and deadly daytime was “very unusual” for the area, Capt. Duane Harris of the Sheriff’s San Dimas Station said. “This is appropriately described as a quiet community,” he said.
A large memorial of flowers and candles sat in front of Quiznos shop Wednesday. Family members did not wish to comment.
Monrovia police Lt. Mike Lee said he knew Patel since before he bought his Quiznos restaurant, when he owned a video store on Arrow Highway and Sunflower Avenue.
“He was just a good man,” Lee said. “He always remembered your name.”
Lee described Patel as a soft spoken man who always treated customers nicely.
Signs on the door of the eatery invited to public to a memorial service at 2:15 p.m. Thursday at the Memory Garden Memorial Park and Mortuary, 455 W. Central Ave. in Brea. “Peter was a hard working family man who brought people together,” the sign read. “He was passionate about serving his food and exchanging family stories with his customers. Peter spent every day working side by side with the woman he loved most — his wife, Maya “Mary” Patel.”
A candlelight vigil is planned for 7 p.m. Friday in front of the Quiznos store. A website collecting donations to help Patel’s family has been established at www.youcaring.com/pravin.
Anyone with information is asked to contact the Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau at 323-890-5500. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.
A judge sentenced a gang member to 34 years to life in prison Wednesday for shooting a rival gang member in the throat last year, authorities said.
Andrew Phillip Kingsbury received his sentence in Pomona Superior Court, where a jury convicted him April 29 of attempted murder and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office spokeswoman Sarah Ardalani said in a written statement. Authorities described him as a West Covina resident, though a family friend said he is from Hacienda Heights.
He shot and wounded a 44-year-old Hacienda Heights man on May 18, 2014, in the 1000 block of Olympus Avenue, according to prosecutors and Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials.
After shooting the victim in the throat, the shooter then fled on a bicycle, but the chain snapped, sheriff’s Sgt. Rick Thurlo said at the time. Deputies soon captured Kingsbury nearby.
ARCADIA >> Police are investigating a Sunday morning shooting in a residential neighborhood that left an Arcadia man dead, authorities said.
The shooting took place about 9 a.m. in the 1000 block of South 5th Avenue, just south of Duarte Road, Arcadia police Lt. Mike Castro said.
Officers responded to a call reporting a “loud bang” and a “person down” to find a man wounded by gunfire, the lieutenant said.
He was taken to an area hospital where he succumbed to his injuries a short time later.
The victim had been walking down the street when he was shot, Castro said. No further details regarding the circumstances of the shooting were released, and no suspect description was available.
Officials withheld the victim’s name pending notification of his family, Los Angeles County coroner Investigator Kimberly Arnold said. He was initially described as an Arcadia man in his mid-50s.
Police kept 5th Avenue closed between Duarte Road and Leda Lane well into the afternoon as authorities continued their investigation.
Crime scene investigators scoured the front yard of a home with metal detectors, while another climbed onto the roof to search for clues.
Neighbors traded pieces of information they’d heard about what had taken place in the generally quiet and uneventful street.
Though she lives only a few houses away from the shooting scene, Sherry Xi, 44, said she heard no gunshots or commotion Sunday morning.
And while the neighborhood has seemed to see an increase in burglaries in recent years, she said, news of a fatal shooting came as a shock and left her nervous.
Anyone with information can reach Arcadia police at 626-574-5150. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.
PASADENA >> Police are seeking two attackers who wounded a man in a car-to-car shooting in Pasadena late Thursday, officials said.
The shooting took place about 10 p.m. at Orange Grove Boulevard and Marengo Avenue, Pasadena police Lt. Vasken Gourdikian said.
The victim, a man in his 20s who was not believed to have gang ties, was driving when he was confronted by two suspects described only as male who were in a gray, mid-2000s-model Chevrolet Tahoe SUV, the lieutenant said.
Gourdikian said the two suspects asked the victim, “where he was from,” a common gang challenge, before opening fire from within their SUV.
Though wounded in the upper torso, the victim managed to drive himself to nearby Huntington Hospital, Gourdikian said. His injuries did not appear to be life-threatening.
WEST COVINA >> An unknown attacker shot and wounded a West Covina man at a Del Norte Park late Saturday in what police suspect may have been a drug deal gone awry.
Officers responding to a 10:42 p.m. report of a “man down” near the gazebo north of the baseball diamond at the park, 1500 W. Rowland Ave., encountered a 41-year-old man suffering from a gunshot wound to his abdomen, West Covina police Lt. Dennis Patton said.
The victim was conscious and speaking with officers before he was taken to a hospital for treatment, but would not tell police what had taken place, the lieutenant said. His injury was not believed to be life-threatening.
No information regarding the shooter or circumstances of the shooting were available Sunday, however investigators were looking into the possibility the shooting stemmed from a drug deal.
The victim had methamphetamine in his possession, and is also named in a felony arrest warrant stemming from a narcotics case, Patton said.
Anyone with information can reach West Covina police at 626-939-8500. The department’s 24-hour tip line can be reached at 626-939-8688, or information can be submitted to the department by texting TIPWCPD and your tip to 847411.
PASADENA >> A Pasadena man suffered serious injuries in a drive-by shooting Friday night, police said.
The shooting took place about 11:30 p.m. in at Stanton Street and Casitas Drive, Pasadena police Lt. John Mercado said.
A 49-year-old man had just left an adult’s birthday party and was walking to his car when someone inside a passing dark-colored, older-model Honda opened fire, Mercado said.
One bullet pierced through the man’s arm and entered his abdomen, the lieutenant said. He was listed in critical but stable condition after undergoing emergency surgery.
Further details of the shooting were unclear Saturday morning, Mercado said. Police had yet to interview the victim due to his medical condition, and other guests of the party did not appear to be cooperating with investigators.
ALTADENA >> Two attackers shot and wounded a man late Friday in a residential neighborhood in Altadena, officials said.
The victim was hospitalized in stable condition following the shooting, which took place shortly after 11:30 p.m. in the 100 block of West Las Flores Drive, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Sgt. Alan Chu said.
The two suspects, described only as male, fled on foot and were not found, Chu said.
Further details regarding the circumstances of the shooting were not available.
ROWLAND HEIGHTS >> A security shot at a man who stole a Rolex watch from a Rowland Heights jewelry store Sunday afternoon, authorities said.
Few details were initially available regarding the incident, which unfolded about 3:15 p.m. at Hing Wa Lee Jewelers, on Fairway Drive just north of Colima Road, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. David Buckner said.
It was not clear if the suspect had been wounded, the lieutenant said.
A man tried on an item and fled the store with it, he said. An armed security guard chased after him.
“At some point there was an altercation in the parking lot, which resulted in the security guard shooting,” Buckner said.
The guard fired several rounds, though it was not clear if the suspect had been wounded. He was last seen getting into a silver car with a driver waiting at the wheel.
The stolen item was described as a Rolex watch worth up to $25,000.
“Community members walked from Fountain of Life Church, to the Fair Oaks Burger, where Christopher Walker was killed on April 30, 2015. This marks the six-month anniversary of the murder of Christopher Walker. Christopher spent much of his short life affiliated with a gang, but he had put that behind him. At the time of his death, Walker turned his back on gang life and he had a family and a full-time job.This event is a call to action for the community of Altadena. Community leaders and members will come together to learn ways to curb gang affiliation and violence in the community and offer options to Altadena and Pasadenas at-risk youth. (Photo by Walt Mancini/Pasadena Star-News)”
ALTADENA >> Loved ones and community members marched through Altadena Thursday to memorialize the life of a 26-year-old father of two who was gunned down in an unprovoked attack at a hamburger stand last year, as well as call on the community to work toward solutions to gang violence.
More than 100 people met at the Fountain of Life Church before heading to Fair Oaks Burger, where Christopher Walker was killed in an ambush on Oct. 30, 2014 as he sat on the outdoor patio of the restaurant.
“We want people to know who Christopher was, but we also want people to know it’s time to do something about the violence in out community,” Walker’s mother Ursula Walker said.
“All life matters. That is my main point today,” she said.
PHOTOS by Walt Mancini
WEST COVINA >> A man died following a shooting in a West Covina parking lot late Wednesday, authorities said.
The victim died at the scene of the shooting, which took place about 9:45 p.m. in a parking lot outside a U.S. Social Security Administration building along Vincent Avenue, just south of West Covina Parkway, West Covina police Officer Brian Kearns said.
No information regarding the circumstances of the shooting was available, nor was a suspect description, he said. No suspects were in custody.