IRWINDALE >> The death of a man found dead in the San Gabriel riverbed in Irwindale last weekend has been ruled a suicide, coroner’s officials said.
The body of the man, whose identity has not been released, was discovered about 11 a.m. Sunday beneath a bridge in the riverbed along Rivergrade Road, near the 605 Freeway, according to Los Angeles County sheriff’s and coroner’s officials.
Foul play was not initially suspected, however the man’s cause of death was not apparent, officials said. Sheriff’s homicide detectives joined Irwindale police and coroner’s officials in the investigation.
An autopsy revealed that the man died as a result of jumping from the bridge, Los Angeles County Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner Chief of Operations Brian Elias said. He died from “blunt force injuries,” and the death as ruled a suicide.
Coroner’s officials withheld the man’s name pending notification of family.
SOUTH WHITTIER >> Coroner’s officials have released the identity of a 65-year-old South Whittier man investigators say shot his wife to death in South Whittier before turning a shotgun on himself Friday.
Walter Maholick was pronounced dead at the scene of the alleged murder-suicide, which was first discovered about 10:40 a.m. Friday at the home he shared with his wife in the 13500 block of Lanning Drive, according to Los Angeles County Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner records.
Authorities did not formally identify his wife Saturday pending notification of kin.
Deputies from the Los Angeles County sheriff’s Norwalk Station went to the home in the unincorporated county area of South Whittier after a close friend reported not seeing the couple in several days, Lt. Eddie Hernandez of the sheriff’s Homicide Bureau said.
The friend provided deputies with a key, he said. They entered the home and discovered the bodies of Maholick and his wife.
Sheriff’s investigators determined Maholick killed his wife before taking his own life, officials said.
An autopsy was pending Saturday.
SOUTH WHITTIER >> A man shot his wife to death before turning a shotgun on himself at the couple’s South Whittier home, authorities said Thursday.
The suspected murder-suicide was discovered about 10:30 a.m. Thursday at a house in on a cul-de-sac in the 13500 block of Lanning Drive, in the unincorporated county area of South Whittier, Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials said in a written statement.
A close family friend called deputies to report the had not seen the couple that lives in the home for a few days, according to Deputy Ryan Rouzan of the Sheriff’s Information Bureau. The friend gave deputies a key to the home.
“Deputies entered the location and found the husband laying on the bed, with a gunshot wound to the upper torso,” Rouzan said. “A shotgun was recovered near the husband’s body. The gunshot wound appears to be self-inflicted.”
The body of the man’s wife was also found inside the home, he said. “She also had a single gunshot wound to the upper torso.”
Investigators determined the man fatally shot his wife before killing himself, Rouzan said. It was unclear exactly when the shooting took place prior to the discovery of the grisly crime scene.
The identities of the man and woman were withheld pending notification of family, officials said.
“There is no additional information available at this time and the investigation is ongoing,” Rouzan said.
Officials at the sheriff’s Norwalk Station, which patrols South Whittier, deferred comment to their counterparts at the sheriff’s Homicide Bureau and sheriff’s Information Bureau.
Anyone with information was 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.
SOUTH EL MONTE >> Deputies spent more than an hour persuading a suicidal man to climb down from a pedestrian bridge spanning a 60 Freeway offramp in South El Monte Friday, officials said.
The incident began about 7:10 p.m. on the bridge at Cogswell Road, just east of Santa Anita Avenue, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. Ismael Chavez said.
Officials received reports of a man sitting atop the fence lining the pedestrian bridge, the lieutenant said.
California Highway Patrol officers shut down the Santa Anita Avenue offramp of the westbound 60 Freeway as Los Angeles County firefighters set up an air cushion below the bridge, officials said. A specially-trained sheriff’s Mental Evaluation Team was summoned to the scene to speak with the distraught man.
After more than an hour, deputies persuaded the man to climb down and accept help, Chavez said. He was taken for psychiatric evaluation.
The offramp was re-opened about 8:30 p.m., according to the CHP.
LA MIRADA >> Officials Friday released the identity of a 61-year-old man found dead from an apparent suicide after a SWAT team surrounded his La Mirada home for five hours on Wednesday.
Dennis Solis died at the scene of the standoff, which came to an end about 10:30 p.m. Wednesday at a house in the 12000 block of Los Coyotes Avenue, Los Angeles County Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner Assistant Chief of Operations Ed Winter said.
Solis was believed to have died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound, according to Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials. An autopsy was yet to be carried out Friday.
Deputies responded to the home shortly before 5:30 p.m. after family members reported he was suicidal and armed with a rifle, Lt. Robin Limon of the sheriff’s Norwalk Station said. The family members got out of the home unharmed.
After hearing gunshots, deputies summoned a SWAT team to take over the situation. After about five hours, sheriff’s Special Enforcement Bureau deputies forced their way into the home and found Solis dead.
PASADENA >> Police negotiators spend more than two hours persuading a suicidal man who claimed to be armed with a handgun to come out of his Pasadena motel room and accept help, officials said.
The incident began about 8:30 p.m. when a 30-year-old Monrovia man called police from a motel in the 1600 block of East Colorado Boulevard and said he was suicidal and had a gun with him in his motel room, Pasadena police Lt. John Mercado said.
Police arrived on scene and got the man back on the phone, Mercado said. After more than two hours, police crisis negotiators managed to persuade the man to come out.
No gun was ultimately found, Mercado said. The man was taken to a hospital for psychiatric evaluation.
WHITTIER >> The death of a man found fatally shot inside a Whittier apartment Monday has been ruled a suicide, coroner officials said.
Police responded about 1 a.m. Monday to a report of a shooting at an apartment in the 6300 block of Comstock Avenue, Whittier police Officer John Scoggins said.
Paramedics pronounced the man dead at the scene. Foul play was not initially suspected, however police deferred to the Los Angeles County Department of Coroner to determined an officials cause of death.
Through a autopsy, coroner’s investigators determined the death of the 33-year-old man was a suicide, coroner’s officials said.
ONTARIO >> Authorities Sunday identified an Ontario man they say fatally shot two family members at his wife’s grave at the Bellevue Memorial Park before turning the gun on himself.
Karapet Kalajian died after slaying his brother-in-law Misak Minasyan, 60, and sister-in-law Hripsime Minasyan, 59, both of North Hollywood, just after 3 p.m. Saturday at the cemetery, 1240 W. G Street in Ontario, according to San Bernardino County coroner’s officials.
Kalajian and his relatives encountered each other at the cemetery the day before the anniversary of the death of Kalajian’s wife, Ontario police Sgt. Jeff Higbee said in a written statement. Kalajian’s wife, who was Hripsime Minasyan’s sister and Misak Minasyan’s sister-in-law, died on Jan. 3, 2011, following a “prolonged battle with cancer.”
“Kalajian has had difficulty dealing with the death of his wife and had become estranged from the family for more than a year,” Higbee said.
Kalajian was already at the cemetery, sitting in his car, when Misak Minasyan, Hripsime Minasyan and a another elderly family member arrived, police said. The elderly family member, also related to Kalajian by marriage, used a walker.
“The suspect got out of his car with a handgun and walked directly toward the victims,” Higbee said. “He quickly shot one and then the other before turning the gun on himself. The woman with the walker was unharmed.”
The investigation is ongoing, and anyone with information is asked to contact Ontario police Detective Josh Burks at 909-395-2912. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to WeTip at 800-782-7463, or online at www.wetip.com.
PHOTO by Wil Lester
PICO RIVERA >> Deputies rescued suicidal man who tried to hang himself from a telephone pole in Pico Rivera Friday morning, officials said.
Deputies were summoned about 9:20 a.m. to the 9300 block of Wampler Street by a family member of the man, Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials said in a written statement.
“A male adult became despondent and attempted to hang himself from a telephone pole on the south side of Wampler Street,” according to the statement. A family member tried to intervene and called 911.
“(Deputies) found the man hanging from an electrical cord tied to the pole,” the statement said. “They quickly climbed the telephone pole and lifted the man up, preventing his death. Deputies cut the noose from his neck and carried him down from the pole.”
Paramedics took the man to a hospital, where he was listed in serious but stable condition, officials said.
Sheriff’s officials urged anyone thinking of hurting themselves to reach out and take advantages of resources designed to help, such as the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention hotline at 800-273-8255. For more information, visit www.afsp.org.
PHOTO courtesy of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
SAN GABRIEL >> Police suspect suicide after a man was found dead in the parking lot of a Valley Boulevard business park Friday, officials said.
A witness called 9-1-1 about 11 a.m. to report seeing a man in his 50s lying on the ground in a parking lot in the 1000 block of East Valley Boulevard, just west of Walnut Grove Avenue, San Gabriel police Lt. Riki Nakamura said. Paramedics pronounced the man dead at the scene.
After finding trauma on the man’s head, detectives initially treated the death as a possible homicide, the lieutenant said. But further investigation indicated the man had committed suicide by jumping from the roof of a nearby two-story building, standing about 50 feet tall.
Though not witnesses to the fall had been found, shoe prints matching the shoes on the body were discovered on the roof of the building, Nakamura said.