Walnut woman sentenced in Irwindale hit-and-run

POMONA — A Walnut woman was released from jail Wednesday following her sentencing for a hit-and-run crash in Irwindale that left an elderly Baldwin Park woman dead last year, officials said.Ashley Lopez, 22, was sentenced to 360 days jail time, which she was credit for due to time already served, along with five years of formal probation, Pomona Superior Court officials said.Lopez had been in custody since February after pleading no contest late last year to a count of felony hit-and-run following a Nov. 2 collision at Live Oak and Stewart avenues in Irwindale, according to officials and Los Angeles County booking records.Killed in the collision was 80-year-old Cu Lee Nguyen, who was crossing Live Oak Avenue when she was struck by Lopez’s eastbound car, according to Irwindale police. She died at the scene. Lopez was arrested Nov. 5 at her workplace in Irwindale after an investigation identified her as the driver of the car that struck Nguyen, police said.Police said she told investigators she fled the scene of the crash because she was afraid.

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Deputies to crack down on motorcycle safety in Walnut

WALNUT — Sheriff’s officials are planning to crack down on motorcycle safety Tuesday , authorities said.
“Extra deputies will be on duty patrolling areas frequented by motorcyclists and where motorcycle crashes occur,” Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials said in a written statement.
“Deputies will be looking for drivers and riders who are under the influence of drugs or alcohol and cracking down on traffic violations made by motorcyclist as well as other vehicle drivers that can lead to motorcycle collisions, injuries and fatalities,” the statement said.
A 10 year trend of increasing numbers of motorcycle fatalities statewide peaked in 2008, with 560 deaths, and dropped by 37 percent in the following two years, officials said.
“This is a positive trend that we want to see continue,” the sheriff’s statement said.
In the area patrolled by the sheriff’s department, however, motorcycle crashed and fatalities have been on the rise.
Officials reported 184 injury motorcycle crashes in 2011, up from 47 in 1998. Two motorcyclists died in crashed in 1998, while six were killed in crashes in 2011.
Riders are encouraged to get training through the California Motorcyclist Safety Program. For more information, call 877-743-3411.

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UPDATED: Walnut aircraft parts company flooded by water main break

FLOODING
WALNUT – A water main burst flooded and seriously damaged an aircraft component manufacturing company Wednesday, officials said.
The incident was first reported about 6 p.m. at the Triumph Group Inc., 20415 E. Walnut Drive, Los Angeles County Fire Department Dispatch Supervisor Kyle Sanford said.
A water main of unknown size ruptured just outside the business, sending about 5,000 gallons of water per minute pouring into the 100-foot by 200-foot concrete building, fire Capt. Gil Sanchez said.
At the peak of the flooding, the captain estimated that the water throughout the interior of the building, which houses both manufacturing and office space, rose to between 8 and 10 inches in depth.
More than 20 employees had gotten out of the building prior to the arrival of firefighters, Sanchez said. No injuries were reported.
Firefighters were unable to shut down the flow of water themselves and called for assistance from Walnut Valley Water District officials, Sanford said.
Once the building was cleared of employees, firefighters made their first priority getting important documents and computers above the water level to keep vital business information from being destroyed, Sanchez explained.
The flood caused about $60,000 worth of damage to the building and its contents, Sanchez said.
Walnut Valley Water District officials were looking into the reason the water main gave way, he added.

PHOTO courtesy of the Los Angeles County Fire Department

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Man suspected in at least three gas station robberies in Diamond Bar, Walnut

Sheriff’s deputies arrested a man early Sunday in Diamond Bar following what authorities said was his third armed gas station robbery in the area since Thursday.
Eddie Anthony Sanders, 31, was jailed following a 5 a.m. heist at an ARCO station at Brea Canyon Road and Lycoming Street, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Sgt. Angie Wilkinson said. He listed addresses in both Pomona and Anaheim.
The previous robberies were also reported in the early-morning hours, Wilkinson said. A Chevron station at Valley Boulevard and Pierce Road in Walnut was robbed Saturday, and an ARCO station at Diamond Bar Boulevard and Brea Canyon Road in Diamond Bar was robbed Thursday.
In the most recent crime, the 30-year-old clerk called deputies before the robbery even occurred after recognizing him in the parking lot from a photograph of the alleged serial robber shown to him by a deputy the previous night, officials said.
“(The deputy) told him to be on the lookout for Sanders,” Wilkinson said in a written statement.
“At 5 a.m. (Sunday), the clerk saw Sanders in the parking lot,” the sergeant said. “He appeared to be around, waiting for customers in the store to leave. The clerk immediately called Walnut station to report seeing him.”
“Moments after hanging up, Sanders walked in and robbed the clerk with a handgun,” Wilkinson said. “As he was walking through the parking lot, deputies arrived and arrested him.”
The semi-automatic handgun Sanders used in the robbery had been reported stolen in a home burglary, Wilkinson added. <p>Evidence found in Sander’s car, which was found parked across the street, led investigators to believe he may be responsible for additional robberies in other cities.
She said detectives were working with investigators from other nearby jurisdictions to try to link Sanders to additional crimes.
Sanders was scheduled to be arraigned Tuesday in Pomona Superior Court.

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Chino man injured, suspected of DUI following 60 Freeway crash in Walnut

WALNUT — A Chino man suffered major injuries and is suspected of drunken driving after rear-ending a big rig on the 60 Freeway, which then fled the scene early Saturday, authorities said.
Christopher Oviedo, 20, was arrested on suspicion of drunken driving and hospitalized in stable condition following the 6 a.m. crash on the westbound 60 Freeway, just east of Fairway Drive, California Highway Patrol Officer Adam Christopher said in a written statement.
He was driving a 2000 Jeep Cherokee at an unknown speed in the No. 3 lane prior to the crash, the officer said. A big rig was traveling ahead of Oviedo in the No. 4 lane.
“For an unknown reason, Mr. Oviedo turned his car to the right and entered the No. 4 lane where it collided with the rear of the big rig,” Christopher said.
The Jeep spun out of control and ended up crashing into the metal guardrail along the north side of the freeway, he said. He became trapped in the vehicle and had to be freed from the wreckage by Los Angeles County firefighters.
Oviedo, who was not wearing a seat belt, suffered “major facial injuries,” in the crash.
A description of the big rig was not available.
Witnesses were encouraged to contact the Baldwin Park office of the CHP during normal business hours at 626-338-1164. After hours, the CHP can be reached at 323-982-4900.

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Brush fire ignites near homes in Walnut

**UPDATE: Fire declared knocked down at 4:58 p.m., per Los Angeles County Fire Department.**

WALNUT — Nearly 200 firefighters rushed to battle a brush fire that ignited near homes Friday afternoon, authorities said.
The fire was first reported about 3:50 p.m. along the 600 block of Silver Valley Trail, Los Angeles County sheriff’s and fire officials said.
Firefighters estimated the fire was about 2 acres in size when they arrived, and immediately called for reinforcements, “Because of the weather and the closeness to the homes,” Los Angeles County Fire Department Inspector Quvondo Johnson said.
Water-dropping helicopters were also quickly brought to bear on the flames, he added.
Kim Watts, who works at the Walnut Senior Center, said someone came in and announced that the hillside was on fire.
“I saw the flames and ran in to call the fire department,” she said. “They said they were on the way.”
Watts added she was relieved to see helicopters arrive on the scene and begin making water drops.
The flames appeared to be subsiding near the senior center, though there was still a great deal of smoke, Watts said.

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Senior struck by car in Walnut

WALNUT — A senior citizen suffered significant injuries but appeared to be in stable condition after being struck by a car Thursday, authorities said.
The man, estimated to be in his mid-60s, was struck by a vehicle about 6:40 a.m. at Grand Avenue and San Jose Road, Los Angeles County sheriff’s and fire officials said. His city of residence was not immediately clear, as he had no identification with him.
The man showed stable vital signs, however rescuers landed a helicopter on the soccer field of nearby Mt. SAC to fly him to a trauma center as a precaution, Los Angeles County Fire Department Dispatch Supervisor Bernard Peters said.
He was crossing east across Grand Avenue, within a crosswalk, when he was struck, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Sgt. Allen Fulkerson said.
The car that struck him, a compact Honda being driven by a Walnut man by a Honda sedan being driven by a Walnut man in his mid-50s, Fulkerson said. He was believed to be making a left turn from San Jose onto Grand when the pedestrian was struck.
The cause remained under investigation by deputies from the sheriff’s Walnut-Diamond Bar Station, however nothing criminal was initially suspected, the sergeant said.

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Construction workers injured by falling wall in Walnut

WALNUT — Two construction workers suffered injuries Friday when a wood-frame wall collapsed on top of them at a construction site, authorities said.
The men, both in their 30s, were suffered apparently moderate injuries, but were in a great deal of pain, fire Capt. Robert Harmon said.
Workers had framed what was eventually to become n interior wall on the second floor of the building and were raising it into place when it fell on them, the capain said.
The wall, made of 2-inch by 6-inch pieces of lumber, was about 8 feet tall and more than 20 feet long, Harmon said.
Rescuers used stretchers to carefully bring the injured workers down from the second floor before taking them to a hospital, the captain said.

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Walnut teen killed in Industry moped crash identified

INDUSTRY — Authorities Sunday released the name of a 17-year-old Walnut boy killed in a moped crash in Industry.
Joshua Chua died at a hospital following the crash, which took place just after 6 p.m. on San Jose Avenue, just east of Nogales Street, Los Angeles County Department of Coroner Investigator Lydia Granado-Mata said.
He was riding a moped west on San Jose at about 25 mph when he crashed into a utility trailer attached to a parked truck, according to the California Highway Patrol.
He suffered major head injuries and was rushed to a hospital by helicopter, where he died from his injuries, officials said.
Anyone with information was asked to contact the Baldwin Park office of the CHP during normal business hours at 626-338-1164.

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UPDATE: Walnut teen killed in Industry moped crash

INDUSTRY — A 17-year-old Walnut boy died Friday after crashing a moped into a parked truck, authorities said.
The teen’s name was not released early Saturday pending positive identification and confirmation that his family had been notified, coroner’s officials said.
He was riding a 2009 X-Treme moped west on San Jose Avenue, just east of Nogales Street, at about 25 mph shortly after 6 p.m. when the crash occurred, California Highway Patrol officials said in a written statement.
For unknown reasons, officials said, the rider veered to the right side of the road and struck a parked truck attached to a utility trailer, according to the CHP.
Despite wearing a helmet, the rider suffered major head injuries and was rushed by helicopter to a Los Angeles hospital, officials said. He died from his injuries an hour later.
The crash is being investigated by the Baldwin Park office of the CHP. Any witnesses were asked to contact investigators during normal business hours at 626-338-1164.

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