WEST COVINA >> The death of a man found fatally shot inside a car parked in a West Covina parking lot Thursday is being investigated as a suicide, police said.
Officials first received reports about 9 a.m. that a man was unresponsive inside a car parked in the 100 block of South Vincent Avenue, West Covina police Lt. Pat Cirrito said.
Officers found the man had suffered a gunshot wound to his head, the lieutenant said. Foul play was not suspected.
GLENDORA >> Police arrested a man they say exposed himself inside a Khol’s store Thursday, authorities said.
A store employee called police about 2 p.m. and reported seeing a man exposing and touching himself inside of the department store, 1225 S. Lone Hill Ave., Glendora police Lt. Rob Lamborghini said.
“Essentially, he was walking around the store following female customers,” the lieutenant said. He allegedly carried on the inappropriate conduct while following at least two women inside the store, none of whom was aware he was following them,” Lamborghini said.
Police found Michael McClain, 27, of West Covina inside the store and arrested him for indecent exposure and committing lewd acts in public, both misdemeanors, Lamborghini said. He was expected be released with a citation later in the day.
WEST COVINA >> A man robbed a woman of her purse at gunpoint in the parking lot of a grocery store at the Eastland Center early Sunday, police said.
The robber drove up to the 53-year-old woman about 9:35 a.m. as she walked in the parking lot of Albertons, located inside the shopping center at Workman Avenue and Citrus Street, West Covina police Lt. Dennis Patton said.
While still seated in the driver seat of his car, the robber brandished a semi-automatic handgun and demanded the woman’s purse, Patton said. “Out of fear, she complied.”
The woman suffered no injuries, Patton said. A detailed description of the robber or his car was not available.
WEST COVINA >> Two alleged gang members were in custody and a third was being sought after they intentionally struck a bicyclist with their car Sunday afternoon police said.
The incident took place just after 4 p.m. at Willow and Pacific avenues, West Covina police Lt. Dennis Patton said.
Police responded to several calls reporting a man on a bicycle had been struck by a car, Patton said. The car then crashed into a tree.
Paramedics took the injured bicyclist, a man estimated to be in his 20s, to Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center with injuries not believed to be life-threatening, the lieutenant said.
Police soon learned that the collision was not an accident, he said.
The driver of the compact car had struck the bicyclist on purpose, Patton said.
“After they hit the bicyclist intentionally, they tried to hit him again, and they rammed their car into a tree,” he said.
All three occupants of the car ran from the wreck, Patton said. Officers found and arrested two of the suspects nearby, while the third eluded capture.
The circumstances preceding the alleged attack remained under investigation, and the motive was unclear, Patton said.
WEST COVINA >> A SWAT team responding to gunfire at a West Covina home Friday ultimately found a teenage boy dead from an apparently self-inflicted wound, police said.
Police received a call about 4:30 p.m. reporting a possibly suicidal person armed with a rifle at a home in the 1400 block of South San Springs Drive, West Covina police Cpl. Tim Rodgers said in a written statement.
“Upon officers’ arrival, one shot was heard coming from inside the location,” he said.
SWAT officers responded to the home and evacuated nearby residents, officials said.
When SWAT officers entered the home, they discovered a teenage boy suffering from “what appeared to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound,” Rodgers said. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
No one else was found inside the home, Rodgers added.
No further information was released.
WEST COVINA >> A West Covina man disarmed his attacker and held him down for police after being stabbed Saturday during a fight at a West Covina park, police said.
The alleged attack took place about 1 p.m. at Walmerado Park, 625 E. Merced Avenue, West Covina police Lt. Dennis Patton said.
The victim — a 30-year-old, 6-foot 4-inch man of muscular build — was at the park when he was approached by an acquaintance, the lieutenant said.
After a brief exchange of words, the suspect pulled a knife and stabbed the victim in the bicep, police said.
“The victim was able to overpower the suspect,” Patton said.
He disarmed his attacker and threw him to the ground, Patton said. The victim was still on top of the suspect, holding him down, when officers arrived on scene.
The suspect suffered a broken leg in the confrontation, Patton said. His name was not available Sunday afternoon as he remained hospitalized. Police described him as a 31-year-old La Puente resident.
It was unclear what dispute led to the stabbing, Patton said.
WEST COVINA >> An armed robber took $400 and a purse from a business Thursday night.
West Covina Police Officer Eddie Flores said no one was injured during the 7:42 p.m. robbery in the 1400 block of West Garvey Avenue North.
A car pulled into the parking lot of the business which Flores described as a pain management center where acupuncture is available.
Flores said a man got out of the back seat, entered the place, pulled a handgun from his waistband and pointed it at an employee. A second employee was in the back, he added.
Flores said the employee ran to the rear and locked herself in a room with her co-worker.
The robber ransacked the counter area, took a purse, money and left.
He was described as Latino or white, 21 to 25, between 5 feet 6 inches and 5 feet 8 inches tall and weighing between 140 and 170 pounds. There was no description available for the getaway driver. The car they used was described as 4-door black or dark gray sedan.
– By Brian Day and Ruby Gonzales
GLENDORA >> A West Covina man who has worked as a nursing assistant at healthcare facilities throughout the San Gabriel Valley is accused of stealing more than $40,000 from at least two elderly patients in Glendora by fraudulently using their financial information, police said.
Police arrested 29-year-old Maui Berganio at his home Thursday, Glendora police Detective Zach Houser said in a written statement.
He allegedly stole debit card and account information from two elderly guests of Kindred Transitional Care in Glendora to purchase items for himself online, including furniture, Nike tennis shoes and car parts, Glendora police spokeswoman Tricia Ayers said.
“He’s worked at several different care facilities,” Ayers said. Detectives continued seeking any additional victims. “There could be possible additional charges filed,” she said.
In addition to Kindred Transitional Care, over the past 10 years, Berganio has also worked at Arbor Glen Care Center in Glendora, Doctors Hospital in West Covina, West Haven Healthcare Center in West Covina, Citrus Valley Health Partners – Queen of the Valley Camapus in West Covina and Sierra View Care Center in Baldwin Park, police said. And it’s possible he has worked at other Southern California facilities.
Berganio’s alleged identity theft first came to light Jan. 8 when a woman in her 80s staying at the care center noticed some suspicious behavior, officials said.
An elderly guest as Kindred Transitional Care in Glendora awoke to find certified nursing assistant Maui Berganio kneeling by her bedside,” Houser said. “It was later discovered that Berganio had obtained the elderly guest’s debit card information, which he used to attempt numerous fraudulent online transactions totaling over $8,000.”
Investigators ultimately arrested Berganio Thursday afternoon at his home in the 1300 block of East Fairgrove Avenue in West Covina, according to police and Los Angeles County booking records.
The suspect admitted also using the financial information of another woman in her 80s who was staying at Kindred Transitional Care over the past year, police said. The alleged victim died earlier this month.
In that case, Berganio is accused of running up more than $40,000 in online purchases, Ayers said.
Police booked Berganio on suspicion of elder abuse and identity theft, she added.
According county booking records, Berganio was being held in lieu of $50,000 bal. He is scheduled to appear Monday in West Covina Superior Court.
Anyone with information was asked to contact Detective Houser at 626-914-8286.
PHOTOS of suspect Maui Berganio, 29, of West Covina, and photos of goods allegedly purchased with the stolen identities of elderly women, courtesy of the Glendora Police Department.
WEST COVINA >> A mentally ill Glendora man who went missing in West Covina Tuesday turned up safe in Norwalk early Friday, officials said.
The 57-year-old man walked away from Doctor’s Hospital of West Covina Tuesday after exiting the facility for a cigarette, according to West Covina police officials and the man’s sister.
Isidoro “Izzy” Limon, 57, was found safe in Norwalk Friday morning and was being returned to the facility where he lives in Glendora, West Covina police Lt. Dave Lee said.
WEST COVINA >> A Baldwin Park man riding as a passenger in the car of an alleged drunken driver died late Friday in a solo-car crash in West Covina, authorities said.
Aldo Armando Dominguez, 24, of Baldwin Park died at the scene of the 11:45 p.m. crash in the 2700 block of Hillside Drive, Los Angeles County Department of Coroner Lt. David Smith said.
Dominguez was riding as a rear passenger in a Honda sedan being driven by 27-year-old Felipe Lamas-Spino of Baldwin Park, West Covina police Cpl. Rudy Lopez said. Police booked Lamas-Spino on suspicion of felony drunken driving and vehicular manslaughter. He suffered no significant injuries.
Another young man riding as a front passenger in the Honda also escaped significant injury, Lopez said.
Lamas-Spino lost control of the car as he drove west through the residential neighborhood, according to the corporal.
“Speed appears to be a factor,” he said.
The Honda struck the curb and smashed into a tree before overturning and coming to rest against a wall, Lopez said. The impact snapped a tree in half and created massive cracks in a stone retaining wall
Paramedics pronounced Dominguez dead at the scene, Lopez said. He was not believed to have been wearing a seat belt.
Two white candles and a small white cross marked the scene of the crash Saturday.
A nearby resident, who declined to giver her name, said she heard the loud crash from her home but did not know how it happened.
She said she was saddened to learn that a young man had died as a result of the crash.
Family members of Dominguez could not be reached for comment.
The crash occurred on an curving, uphill section of the road.
A cement mailbox pillar next to the destroyed tree had been dislodged by a previous crash about two months ago, the neighbor said.
Lamas-Spino was being held in lieu of $100,000 bail pending a scheduled arraignment Wednesday in West Covina Superior Court, county booking records show.
Witnesses to the crash are encouraged to contact West Covina police at 939-8500, or the department’s 24-hour tip hotline at 626-939-8668.