South El Monte 7-Eleven store robbed

SOUTH EL MONTE >> A man armed with a handgun robbed a South El Monte convenience store early Wednesday, officials said.
The crime took place about 2 a.m. at 7-Eleven, at Rush Street and Tyler Avenue, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. Ismael Chavez said.
The robber entered the store while brandishing a handgun and demanded money from the clerk, the lieutenant said. The clerk handed over an undetermined amount of cash, and the robber ran east down Rush Street. The clerk was not injured.
A detailed suspect description was not available.

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Downey man fatally shot in Rosemead named

ROSEMEAD >> Officials Friday released the name of Downey man who was shot to death while driving through Rosemead with his girlfriend earlier this week.
Jose Radillo Jr., 20, died following Tuesday’s 4:30 p.m. car-to-car shooting at Garvey and Muskatel avenues in Rosemead, according to Los Angeles County sheriff’s and coroner officials.
Radillo was driving east on Garvey Avenue, with his girlfriend riding as a passenger, just before the shots rang out, sheriff’s officials said.
Someone inside a dark-colored, mid-sized car that was also eastbound on Garvey Avenue opened fire, Lt. Holly Francisco of the Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau said.
Radillo suffered a gunshot wound to his torso, she said. His girlfriend was not injured.
Radillo’s car ended up crashing and coming to a stop in the 9300 block of Garvey Avenue, just across the city border in South El Monte, officials said. The vehicle containing the killer or killers made a U-turn and fled west on Garvey Avenue.
Paramedics took Radillo to Beverly Hospital in Montebello, where he succumbed to his injuries, coroner Assistant Chief of Operations Ed Winter said.
A motive in the shooting was not released.
Anyone with information was asked to contact the Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau at 323-890-5500.

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Neighborhood watch, safety meeting planned in South El Monte

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SOUTH EL MONTE >> Community members are invited to take part in a neighborhood watch and safety meeting Thursday in South El Monte.
The meeting, hosted by the city of South El Monte and the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, will take place from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Monte Vista Elementary School, 11111 Thienes Ave., city officials said in a written statement.
Guests are encouraged to come down to meet with neighbors, as well as learn crime prevention and safety tips, organizers said. Light refreshments will be provided while supplies last.

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Deputy, civilian injured in South El Monte crash

SOUTH EL MONTE >> A sheriff’s deputy rushing to a call crashed collided with a civilian’s car in South El Monte late Sunday, resulting in minor injuries to both the deputy and the other driver, authorities said.
The deputy was headed to back up a fellow deputy when the crash occurred shortly before 11 p.m. at Peck Road and Durfee Avenue, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. Loy McBride said. The patrol car had its emergency lights and siren activated.
As the deputy was making a right turn from southbound Peck Road to westbound Durfee Avenue, his patrol car collided with a car stopped in the left-turn lane on eastbound Durfee Avenue, the lieutenant said.
The deputy and a woman at the wheel of the other car suffered minor injuries in the crash, he said. Both had been treated and released from a hospital Monday morning.
An investigation into the cause of the crash was ongoing.

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Registration to begin for South El Monte Youth Co-Ed Basketball


SOUTH EL MONTE >> Registration begins Tuesday for South El Monte Youth Co-Ed Basketball, city officials said.
Residents are invited to register Tuesday through Oct. 3 at the South El Monte Community Center, 1530 Central Ave., South El Monte Community Services Department officials said in a written statement. Non-residents are invited to register Sept. 15 through Oct. 3.
Registration takes place from 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday, officials added. The fee is $40.
Players must bring proof of age, grade level and residence.
Division are divided up by age and include a pee wee level for kids in kindergarten through 2nd grade; as well as division for 3rd- and 4th-graders, 5th- and 6th-graders; and 7th and 8th graders.
For more information, contact Recreation Specialist Larry Cabral at 626-579-2043.

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Chain-reaction crash on 60 Freeway in South El Monte leaves 5-year-old girl dead, 13 others injured



SOUTH EL MONTE >> A young child was fatally injured early Thursday and 13 other people were hurt in a fiery, 11-vehicle crash on the eastbound 60 Freeway at Santa Anita Avenue, authorities said.
Maydelin Salas, 5, of South El Monte died at a hospital shortly after the wreck, Los Angeles County Department of Coroner Assistant Chief of Operations Ed Winter said.
She was riding as the left, rear passenger in a 2004 Nissan minivan that was struck from behind by a tanker truck hauling milk, setting off a chain-reaction.
“Due to the severity of her injuries, we were unable to save her,” Beverly Hospital Emergency Care Center Assistant Medical Director Dr. Raul Lopez said in a written statement.


PHOTO by Keith Durflinger

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Pomona man accused of abandoning 6-year-old boy at Whittier Narrows Recreation Area

SOUTH EL MONTE >> Investigators arrested a Pomona man early Thursday for allegedly abandoning his prospective adopted 6-year-old son at the Whittier Narrow Recreation Area in South El Monte earlier this week.
Deputies arrested Juan Manuel Garcia-Tellez, 31, about 9 a.m. Thursday after spotting him at his Pomona home, according to Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials and booking records. He is in a relationship with the boy’s mother and was apparently in the process of trying to adopt the boy.
The investigation began about 9:40 p.m. Monday when a good Samaritan called authorities to report finding a 6-year-old boy wandering alone in the park near Legg Lake, Deputy Johnny Jones of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Parks Bureau said.
“He was just throwing rocks into he water. He was crying because he was looking for his dad.”
A car, later determined to be Garcia-Tellez’s, was found several miles away, however there were no signs of the man, officials said.
“The child, who was cold and hungry, was placed in the deputy’s patrol car and fed while parks bureau personnel continued to search,” Jones said.
After more than three hours of searching with no success, deputies turned the boy over to the Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services about 1 a.m., Jones said.
Officials ultimately contacted the boy’s mother and returned her child to her.
Garcia-Tellez’s motive was not clear, Jones said. The suspect said he left the boy at the park while running errand.
But investigators learned that he had been involved in an argument with the boy’s mother hours before leaving the boy alone at the park.
Deputies stopped by Garcia-Tellez home several times this week, but did not find him, Jones said. But they found him there Thursday morning and took him into custody without a struggle.
Garcia-Tellez was booked on suspicion of child endangerment, Jones said.
He was being held in lieu of $100,000 bail pending his initial court appearance, scheduled Monday in El Monte Superior Court, records show.

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Sixty-seven arrested during first day of two-day rave at Whittier Narrows


SOUTH EL MONTE >> Deputies made 67 arrests Saturday during the first day of the two-day HARD Summer 2014 music festival taking place at the Whittier Narrows Recreation Area, authorities said.
About 40,000 people were estimated to have attended the first day of the rave-style electronic music festival, with similar attendance expected Sunday, Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials said.
Of the 67 arrests made Saturday, 60 were for fake identification cards, sheriff’s Deputy Johnny Jones said.
Six people were arrested on suspicion of selling drugs, Jones said.
And one person was arrested Saturday on suspicion of robbery after stealing an event staff shirt from the back of a worker, Jones said. The suspect was apprehended following the crime, which was apparently committed in an effort to sneak into the festival.
Statistics were not available for Sunday as the concert continued, but Jones noted there had been “a few” arrests.

PHOTO – Deputies watch over the HARD Summer 2014 music festival from their command post at the Whittier Narrows Recreation Area in South El Monte. (Courtesy of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department)

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SuperLotto Plus ticket sold in South El Monte hits $26 million jackpot

SOUTH EL MONTE >> A SuperLotto Plus ticket sold at a South El Monte liquor store won the jackpot in Saturday night’s drawing, earning $26 million for a newly-wealthy patron, according to the California Lottery.
The ticket matched all six numbers in the drawing: 6, 16, 22, 27, 32 and Mega Number 3, California Lottery officials said in a written statement. It was sold at Sam’s Liquor, 9660 Garvey Ave.
The winner was yet to come forward Sunday, store manager Bobby Lee said. The business is owned by his parents.
Lottery officials called the store Saturday night to inform the family they had sold a jackpot ticket, Lee said.
A represented visited the store Sunday morning to leave decorations and celebrate the win, he added.
As the retailer of the ticket, the store is entitled to one-half of one-percent of the $26 million jackpot, or $130,000.
Lee said his family had not determined what to do with their share of the win.
“We’re still too excited. We don’t know yet,” he said.
Lee said the ticket was the biggest winner the store had ever sold.
In addition the jackpot ticket, two other tickets matching five of the six numbers in Saturday’s drawing were sold in Bakersfield and Victorville, winning $23,172 each. Twelve other tickets sold statewide matched four numbers, winning $1,931 each.

Sam’s Liquor, 9660 Garvey Ave. in South El Monte, sold a SuperLotto Plus ticket that won the $26 million jackpot in a drawing on Saturday, Aug. 2, 2014. Manager Bobby Lee stands in front of the store on Sunday, Aug. 3, 2014. (Staff photo by Brian Day)

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Covina police raid marijuana grow inside South El Monte commercial building


SOUTH EL MONTE >> Officers arrested two people and discovered more than 700 marijuana plants growing in a vacant business on Thursday.
Covina Police Sgt. Jim McDonough said officers served a search warrant about 1 p.m. at the secluded, seemingly vacant business in 2600 block of Chico Avenue in South El Monte.
0725_NWS_SGT-L-POT1George Almaguer, 26, Pico Rivera and Jenny Ly, 31, of Rosemead were arrested at the scene, he said. They were booked on suspicion of cultivating marijuana and theft of electricity, as the sophisticated hydroponic grow operation was wired to bypass the electrical meter and steal its power directly from the Southern California Edison grid, the sergeant said.
Police estimated the grow operation had stolen at least $10,000 worth of electricity from the utility over the past year.
“There were three different rooms, each for different stages of growth,” the sergeant said. In all, police seized 733 pot plants from the buidling.
Investigators seized about $2,000 in suspected drug money that Almaguer was carrying, McDonough added.
0725_NWS_SGT-L-POT2The building where the pot grow was uprooted Thursday was situated at the rear of a lot that was secured with a padlocked gate, McDonough said.
Thursday’s bust was related to another investigation where a grow house was found in Covina on May 26, police said.
In the May incident, officers responding to call of several downed power lines smelled marijuana coming from a house in the 200 block of North Larkin Drive. More than 200 marijuana plants were found on the Larkin Drive residence.
That investigation led to Thursday’s search and arrests in South El Monte, though McDonough declined to say exactly how detectives identified the South El Monte address as a suspected grow operation. The investigation was ongoing.
A suspect has been identified in connection with the Larkin Drive grow house, however no arrests have been made, McDonough said.

– By Brian Day and Ruby Gonzales

PHOTOS courtesy of the Covina Police Department

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