TEMPLE CITY – Three people suspected of robbing a Bank of the West branch in Temple City Wednesday were arrested during rush hour on the 10 Freeway at the interchange with the 5 Freeway in Boyle Heights, authorities said.
Levell Martin, 38, of Los Angeles, Calvin Sims, 33, of Los Angeles, and Daneyelle Jackson, 22, of Inglewood were arrested on suspicion of robbery and kidnapping, Lt. Thomas McNeal of the sheriff’s Temple Station said
The robbery was reported in the 9900 block of Las Tunas Drive at about 4:50 p.m., McNeal said.
When deputies arrived at the bank, they were told two males and a female had just committed the robbery, got into a black van and fled. Witnesses gave deputies a partial license plate number from the van, McNeal said.
A short time later, a Temple Station deputy was searching for the suspects and saw the van on the westbound 10 Freeway, near Walnut Grove Avenue in Rosemead.
The deputy requested backup and was assisted on the freeway by a sheriff’s helicopter crew, deputies with trained dogs, more deputies from Temple City and East Los Angeles, and California Highway Patrol officers, McNeal said.
The van and its occupants stopped on the westbound 10 at the interchange with the 5. The suspects surrendered without the need for the use of force, McNeal said.
They were arrested on suspicion of bank robbery and taken to the Temple Station for booking.
Money allegedly stolen from the bank, a weapon, and other evidence connecting the suspects to the alleged bank robbery were found inside the van, McNeal said.
Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department detectives were working with agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation on the robbery, McNeal said.
“Thanks to the help of good witnesses, deputies had a description of the suspects and their van,” McNeal said. “With that information, a very alert deputy spotted the suspects and their vehicle, leading to their arrest.”
TEMPLE CITY — BB guns, bullets and inert grenades left in a Temple City church Friday prompted officials to call in the bomb squad, authorities said.
Officials received a call about 3:30 p.m. reporting a possible explosive device left inside the Victory in Christ Church, 5221 El Monte Ave., Los Angeles County sheriff’s Sgt. Richard Conti said.
Deputies evacuated the area around the church and called for the sheriff’s bomb squad to investigate a box found inside the church filled with suspicious contents.
The bomb squad determined that the box contained BB guns, bullets and grenades that had had the explosives removed, Conti said, and sounded the all-clear shortly after 6 p.m.
Deputies were investigating who left the items at the church and why.
TEMPLE CITY — Officials briefly evacuated a building at Temple City High School Wednesday after an instructor dropped a beaker containing a dangerous acid.
The incident was first reported about 9 a.m. at a science classroom in a two story building on the campus, 9501 Lemon Ave., Los Angeles County sheriff’s and fire officials said.
A custodian at the school was taken to a hospital to be examined as a precaution after inhaling fumes from the spill, fire Capt. Tim Bushrow said.
The chemical spilled was hydrochloric acid, he said. “The estimated quantity was probably a cup to two cups.”
The acid is capable of burning the skin and causing respiratory problems if inhaled, the captain added.
The acid was spilled near the door to the classroom and outside walkway, Bushrow said.
Adding to the drama, he said, “In this case, it was misty or raining outside. Once (hydrochloric acid) mixes with water it produces visible vapor.”
Hazardous materials experts responded to the scene, neutralized the acid with baking soda and cleaned up the mess, Bushrow said.
About 150 students who were evacuated from the building were allowed back in about an hour later, officials said.
From staff and wire reports
A woman kidnapped for ransom, raped and nearly beaten to death was expected to survive Friday as sheriff’s officials continued their investigation, authorities said.
Deqiang Song, 24, of Chicago was arrested just after 1 a.m. Thursday in San Gabriel on suspicion of kidnapping, attempted murder, rape and extortion, Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials said.
The alleged victim, a woman in her 20s, was found in the Apple Valley area Wednesday with major injuries and taken to an Antelope Valley hospital for treatment, Los Angeles County sheriff’s spokesman Steve Whitmore said.
“The good news is, it looks like she’s going to live,” he said. “It was touch and go for a while.”
Due to an ongoing investigation, few details were released Friday about the alleged crime and arrest.
“We’re still playing a little bit close to the vest,” he said.
The abduction is believed to have occurred in a rural area not far from the Los Angeles County-San Bernardino County border.
A person in Cerritos received a phone call Wednesday afternoon demanding money for the return of the victim, officials said.
Between about 11 p.m. Wednesday and 1 a.m. Thursday — after the woman had been found — a man working with undercover detectives left ransom money for the kidnapper under a truck in a parking lot outside the Hawaii Supermarket on East Valley Boulevard in San Gabriel, according to news reports.
According to sheriff’s booking records, Song was being held without bail at the sheriff’s Temple Station and was due for arraignment Monday in Alhambra Superior Court.
This incident is being investigated by the sheriff’s Major Crimes Bureau.
TEMPLE CITY — Sheriff’s officials and worried family members asked the public’s help Saturday in finding a missing 73-year-old Temple City man who suffers from dementia.
Fidel Medina Hernandez was last seen walking in the area of Kauffman Avenue and Las Tunas Drive about 5:30 p.m. Friday, sheriff’s officials said in a written statement.
Hernandez is described as Filipino, about 5 feet 2 inches tall and about 120 pounds, officials said. He has black hair and black eyes.
He was last seen wearing a beige T-shirt, blue jeans and white slippers.
Anyone with information is asked to call the Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau, Missing Person’s Detail at (323) 890-5500.
PHOTO of Fidel Hernandez comes courtesy of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
From the Associated Press:
LONG BEACH — A fugitive caregiver from Temple City charged with stealing $4 million from an ailing elderly woman to fund a lavish lifestyle has surrendered after two years on the lam.
A $2.5 million arrest warrant was issued in 2008 for Li Ching Liu, who was charged with abuse and robbery of a 74-year-old stroke victim. Liu, who also uses the name Susan Liu, was hired in 2002 to care for the woman, who amassed a fortune through real estate investments.
Liu, 54, surrendered Tuesday in Long Beach Superior Court with her attorney, Joseph Camarata. She pleaded not guilty and was jailed. Bail was set at $2.5 million pending an Aug. 24 hearing.
Liu, who disappeared after her adult son and her boyfriend were arrested two years ago, withheld food from the victim to make her comply while Liu drained the woman’s bank accounts, police Detective Stacey Holdredge said. Liu set up more than 60 accounts at half a dozen banks and laundered more than $4 million with the help of 58-year-old boyfriend Abolfath Okhovat of Thousand Oaks and her 29-year-old son, Yun Shih of Temple City, the detective said.
Besides lavish Las Vegas gambling trips and jewelry purchases, Holdredge says the money was used to buy a Porsche sport utility vehicle and a Temple City house for Liu and her boyfriend. The money was also used to pay for Yun Shih’s tuition at the University of Southern California and a BMW.
Both men are in prison after being convicted last year of financial elder abuse.