Man critically injured, teen arrested following stabbing at Pomona park


POMONA >> Police arrested a 17-year-old boy in connection with a stabbing at a Pomona park that left a 24-year-old man hospitalized in critical condition Wednesday afternoon, authorities said.
The near-fatal stabbing took place about 1 p.m. at Tony Cerda Park, 450 W. Grand Ave., Sgt. Brian Hagerty of the Pomona police Major Crimes Task Force said in a written statement.
After responding to a call reporting a stabbing, officers encountered the victim, a Pomona man, suffering from “multiple stab wounds,” Hagerty said. Paramedics took the wounded man to a hospital, where he was listed in critical condition.
Officers identified a 17-year-old boy as a suspect in the stabbing and soon spotted him loitering in the area of Ralph Welch Park, about a mile to the west at 1000 Buena Vista Ave.,  the sergeant said. He was arrested without a struggle.
“The investigation revealed the suspect and the victim have known each other for several months and were involved in a physical altercation prior to the stabbing,” Hagerty said.
Anyone with information was asked to contact Pomona police detectives Edson or Bebon at 909-620-2160. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.

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Charges dismissed against man and woman accused in fatal stabbing of Upland man in South El Monte

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SOUTH EL MONTE >> A judge dismissed charges this week against a man and woman previously accused of murder in connection with the fatal stabbing of an Upland man in South El Monte last year.
Randall Chinchilla, 35, and Andrea Montoya, 37, both of El Monte, were arrested and charged in June in the fatal March 28, 2015, stabbing of 49-year-old Dennis Baltierra.
But during a preliminary hearing Tuesday, Los Angeles County Superior Court 0513_NWS_SGT-L-DISMISSED2Judge Mike Camacho of the Pomona courthouse dismissed the case against the man and woman, Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office spokeswoman Sarah Ardalani said.
At a preliminary hearing, a judge listens to a summary of the case to determine whether sufficient evidence exists to order a defendant to stand trial.
Chinchilla and Montoya were both released from custody Tuesday after spending 11 months behind bars with bail set at $2 million each, county booking records show.
Authorities alleged Chinchilla and Montoya stabbed Baltierra to death when they got into an argument while all three were hanging out at the home of a mutual friend about 11:30 p.m. on March 28 in the 11200 block of Broadmead Street in South El Monte.
Baltierra exited the home and collapsed in the yard with a stab wound to his neck, sheriff’s officials said. He succumbed to his injuries at a hospital a short time later.
Detectives identified Chinchilla and Montoya as suspects and arrested them on June 12.
Anyone with information on the fatal stabbing 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.

PHOTOS: [TOP] Photo from stabbing scene in the 11200 block of Broadmead Street in South El Monte the day after the homicide on March 29, 2016. (By Brian Day) [BELOW] Dennis Baltierra, 49, of Upland. (Courtesy)

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Covina man allegedly stabbed during dispute over late pizza sues Domino’s, delivery driver

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A Covina man who was allegedly stabbed by a Domino’s Pizza delivery man during an argument over late pizza in January is suing the restaurant chain and the driver.
Austin Reilly, 20, filed the lawsuit Tuesday in Los Angeles Superior Court against Domino’s and driver Michael Charles Parker, seeking unspecified damages on allegations of negligence, battery and both intentional and negligent infliction of emotional distress.
Also named as plaintiffs are Reilly’s parents, Owen and Christie Reilly, who witnessed the attack on their son, the suit alleges.
A Domino’s Pizza representative could not be immediately reached for comment.
Parker delivered a pizza to Reilly’s family home in the 1600 block of North Mangrove Avenue about 11:30 p.m. on Jan. 2, Covina police Sgt. Ryan Davis said at the time.
He became involved in an argument with Reilly, who claimed the pizza was late, the sergeant said. The argument turned into a fight, during which the delivery man allegedly slashed the customer in the neck, wrist and hand with an unknown sharp object.
Paramedics took Reilly to a hospital for treatment of wounds described as significant, but not life-threatening.
Police found and arrested Parker, 31, of Glendora shortly before 1 a.m. the following morning at the restaurant on Glendora Avenue in Covina, according to police and Los Angeles County booking records.
Parker was released the day of his arrest after posting $30,000 bail, records show.
Charges were yet to be filed Wednesday, Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Officials said. The case remained under consideration, officials said.
The lawsuit alleges that Parker used a box cutter intending to “disfigure and slay” Reilly and that his injuries were life-threatening.
Domino’s had an obligation to make occasional checks to see that its stores — including the one in Covina where Parker worked — were hiring people fit for the job of dealing with customers in their homes as opposed to in a normal restaurant setting, the suit states.

  • Staff and wire report
  • Photo of Michael Charles Parker, 31, of Glendora courtesy of the Covina Police Department.
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UPDATED: Covina teen accused of attempted murder in girlfriend’s stabbing


COVINA >> A 17-year-old boy repeatedly stabbed his 24-year-old girlfriend in an attack late Tuesday, authorities said.
Police arrested the teen on suspicion of attempted murder following the stabbing, which unfolded shortly after 9 p.m. in the parking lot of an apartment complex in the 700 block of East Workman Street, Covina police Sgt. Trevor Gaumer said.
The woman suffered multiple stab wounds and was flown to a trauma center by helicopter, where she was rushed into surgery, Covina police Sgt. Gregg Peterson said in a written statement.
Police first received reports of a woman in the parking lot who was bleeding from her neck, officials said.
“Officers located a 24-year-old female who was suffering from numerous stab wounds in her upper torso, neck and face,” Peterson said.
The woman remained hospitalized in “serious” condition Wednesday afternoon, Peterson said. She was described as a Covina resident.
Investigators learned the suspect in the brutal attack was still in the area, the sergeant said. Police found the teenage suspect in a condominium complex in the 600 block of E. Workman Street.
“(Officers) noticed he was bleeding from some cuts to his hands and he also made some statements regarding the stabbing, at which time he was taken into custody for attempted murder,” Peterson said.
Police took the teenage suspect, whose name was not released due to his age, to be treated for his injuries before he was booked at Los Padrinos Juvenile Hall in Downey, Peterson said.
He was being held without arraignment pending a scheduled arraignment Thursday in Pomona Juvenile Court, he added.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Covina police detectives at 626-384-5628. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.

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63-year-old homeless man stabbed in the face in Pasadena; suspect sought


PASADENA >> Police are seeking a homeless man who stabbed another homeless man in the face late Tuesday.
The attack was reported about 9:30 p.m., when a bleeding 63-year-old homeless man arrived at Union Station Homeless Services, 412 S. Raymond Ave., Pasadena police Lt. John Mercado said.
Union Station personnel first called 911 after the man showed up, apparently bleeding from his neck, the lieutenant said.
Police and paramedics determined the victim had been slashed in the jaw, the lieutenant said. He was treated for the injury, which was not considered to be life-threatening.
It was not clear where the stabbing occurred.
The victim described his attacker as a fellow homeless man in his 50s, however a detailed description was not available, Luna said. The motive also remained unclear Wednesday.
Anyone with information can reach Pasadena police at 626-744-4241. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.

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Cousins jailed in connection with stabbing outside Covina convenience store

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COVINA >> Two cousins are accused of attempted murder after a fight at a convenience store escalated into a stabbing late Friday, officials said.
Manuel Luis Melendez, 19, of West Covina and Eric Sebastian Garcia-Melendez, 21, of Pasadena, are each being held in lieu of $2 million bail pending their initial court appearances, according to Covina police officials and Los Angeles County booking records.
The incident unfolded about 2:10 a.m. at 7-Eleven, at Vincent Avenue and Badillo Street, Covina police Sgt. Gregg Peterson said.
Both suspects and the victim, a 27-year-old man, were inside the store when the victim accidentally bumped up against one of the cousins with his bicycle, the sergeant said.
An argument turned into a fight outside the store, and one of the two attackers pulled a knife and stabbed the victim in the abdomen and shoulder, Peterson said.
Paramedics took the victim to a hospital, where he was listed in stable condition after undergoing surgery, he said.
As the investigation into the stabbing continued, West Covina police received a report of a possible prowler in a backyard near the 7-Eleven, but across the city border in West Covina, Petson said.
Police found Melendez and Garcia-Melendez hiding in the backyard and arrested them in connection with the stabbing, officials said.
Both suspects are scheduled to appear for arraignment hearings Tuesday in West Covina Superior Court.

BOOKING PHOTOS of anuel Luis Melendez, 19, of West Covina [left] and Eric Sebastian Garcia-Melendez, 21, of Pasadena [right] courtesy of the Covina Police Department.

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California marks Victims’ Rights Week with early release of politician’s son who received commutation in fatal stabbing

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In a truly twisted irony, the State of California marked the start of National Crime Victims’ Rights Week Sunday by announcing the early prison release of the son of a former politician who had his already plea-bargained sentence for the fatal stabbing of 22-year-old San Diego college student Luis Santos commuted by then-governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, the Associated Press reports.

FILE - This April 7, 2016 file photo provided by the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation shows Esteban Nunez. Nunez, the son of former California state Assembly speaker Fabian Nunez, was freed from prison after his manslaughter sentence in the stabbing death of college student Luis Santos in San Diego was significantly reduced in 2011 by then-Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. The CDCR said Sunday, April 10, 2016, that Esteban Nunez was released to parole supervision. (California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation via AP, File)

Esteban Nunez

Esteban Nunez and friend Ryan Jett stabbed Santos to death in 2008. One of the wounds pierced Santos’ heart. The killers were angry after being turned away from a party.

Both men were charged with murder, as well as assault with a deadly weapon for stabbing two other victims, who survived. But on the eve of their trial in 2010, as the LA Times reports,  both killers pleaded guilty to charges of voluntary manslaughter and assault with a deadly weapon. Each received a sentence of 16 years in prison. The plea bargain spared Nunez and Jett the possibility of a first-degree murder conviction at trial, which would have resulted in sentences of 25 years to life.

But as it turns out, Esteban Nunez is the son of former state Assembly speaker Fabian Nunez. And Fabian Nunez was a political ally of then-governor Schwarzenegger, who commuted Esteban Nunez sentence to seven years on his last day in office in 2011. He served less than six before his release over the weekend.

Per the AP:

In 2012, a Sacramento judge called the commutation “repugnant” but legal. In 2015, an appeals court wrote that “back-room dealings were apparent,” but upheld Schwarzenegger’s power to reduce the sentence.

Schwarzenegger said at the time that he acted because he thought the 16-year sentence was excessive, but he also acknowledged he was helping a friend.

Schwarzenegger explained the commutation in an August, 2011, Newsweek interview, saying, “Well, hello! I mean, of course you help a friend.”

Santos’ family receive no warning of the commutation, per the Sacramento Bee. They and San Diego District Attorney filed lawsuits seeking to invalidate the commutation, arguing that it violated the Victims Bill of Rights, also known as Marsy’s Law. Under the 2008 legislation, victims’ families have a right to be heard during post-conviction proceedings. A three-judge panel from the 3rd District Court of Appeals grudgingly upheld an earlier court finding that gubernatorial acts of clemency do not constitute “proceedings,” and therefore are not subject to the Victims Bill of Rights.

“We are compelled to conclude that, while Schwarzenegger’s conduct could be seen as deserving of censure and grossly unjust, it was not illegal,” the panel of judges wrote in their opinion.

PHOTOS via the Associated Press

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Teen wounded in South Whittier stabbing


SOUTH WHITTIER >> Deputies are seeking five young men and a young woman who attacked and stabbed a fellow teen late Friday in the unincorporated county area of South Whittier, officials said.
The attack took place just before midnight along Painter Avenue, near Mulberry Drive, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Sgt. Anthony Fernandez said.
The victim, a teenage boy, was attacked by the group, he said. One of them pulled a knife and stabbed him in the abdomen.
Paramedics took the wounded teen to a hospital with injuries not considered to be life-threatening.
The circumstances and motive in the crime remained under investigation, Fernandez said. A detailed suspect description was not available.

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UPDATED: Woman stabbed two-dozen times in Monterey Park; husband accused of attempted murder


MONTEREY PARK >> Police detained a man after his wife was found lying in the street nude and suffering from two-dozen stab wounds in front of their Monterey Park home late Thursday, officials said.
Police first received reports of a stabbing about 8:25 p.m. at Newmark Avenue and Monterey Pass Road, Monterey Park police Lt. Scott Wiese said.
Callers reported, “a woman in the street, with no clothes on, bleeding,” he said.
Officers found the woman, 56, suffering from about 25 stab wounds or cuts, police said. She was taken to a trauma center for treatment.
The wounds to the woman’s head, face and torso appeared relatively superficial and were not initially believed to be life threatening, he said. She was conscious when taken to the hospital.
Officers then followed a trail of blood to a house in the 1200 block of West Newmark 0402_NWS_SGT-L-MPSTABAvenue, where they detained the woman’s husband, 63-year-old Kam Hing Wong.
“They located the suspect outside of the residence and took him into custody without incident,” Monterey Park police officials said in a written statement.
He was booked on suspicion of attempted murder and domestic violence, police said.
Wong is pictured with what appears to be blood on his head and shirt in his police booking photo.
According to Los Angeles County booking records, Wong was being held without bail pending a scheduled arraignment hearing Wednesday in the Los Angeles Superior Court Alhambra branch.

PHOTO of Kam Hing Wong, 63, courtesy of the Monterey Park Police Department.

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Man convicted of murder for 2014 Monterey Park stabbing

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MONTEREY PARK >> A jury convicted a South San Gabriel man Friday of murder for the seemingly random fatal stabbing of another man in a Monterey Park parking lot in 2014, authorities said.
An Alhambra Superior Court jury found Angel Octavion Garcia, now-20, guilty of second-degree murder for the Oct. 14 slaying of Alhambra Parks and Recreation Department employee Edward Mendoza, 35, in a commercial parking lot in the 1700 block of Portrero Grande, near Arroyo Drive, according to Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office spokeswoman Sarah Ardalani.
Jurors also found true the special circumstance that Garcia personally used a knife in the murder, she said. The deliberations took about one day.
He faces 16 years to life in state prison when he returns to court for sentencing April 8.
Garcia and Mendoza were strangers when they encountered one another by chance in the parking lot about 9:10 p.m., according to prosecutors and Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials.
“It appears Mendoza was in the wrong place at the wrong time,” Ardalani said.
Garcia, who was 18 at the time, stabbed Mendoza, “after he was humiliated over a failed drug transaction involving another person from earlier in the night,” district attorney’s officials said in a written statement.
Though Mendoza had nothing to do with the prior incident, “The defendant took his anger out on Mendoza,” the statement said.
The men briefly argued before Garcia pulled a knife and stabbed Mendoza once in the upper torso, Lt. John Corina of the sheriff’s homicide bureau said shortly after the killer’s capture.
Mendoza managed to call 911 after being wounded, according to Deputy District Attorney Theodore Swanson, who prosecuted the case.
He managed only to tell the dispatcher he had been stabbed in the heart, and gave his location, before the line went silent.
Paramedics found Mendoza collapsed in the parking lot, officials said. He succumbed to his injuries at a hospital about an hour later.
Garcia initially escaped capture.
“Soon after the incident, a person came forward to police and revealed Garcia had confessed to the stabbing a man,” according to the district attorney’s office statement.
Deputies found and arrested Garcia at his home on Oct. 22, eight days after the fatal attack. He denied the charges.
Mendoza had worked part-time as a recreation leader for Alhambra’s Parks and Recreation Department since 2001, city officials said. He had also begun refereeing kids’ football games at Almansor Park in Alhambra, coworkers said.
“It was a tragic case that resulted in the death of what appears to be a man who had a number of family and friends who loved him,” Swanson said.
Loved one’s have created a tribute video for Mendoza, which can be viewed online at www.eddiemendoza.org.

PHOTO: Edward Mendoza, 35, of Monterey Park was fatally stabbed late Tuesday, Oct. 14, 2014, in a commercial parking lot in the 1700 block of South Portrero Grande Drive in Monterey Park. Angel Octavion Garcia, 20, of South San Gabriel, was convicted of the murder on Friday, March 18, 2016. (Courtesy)

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