Montebello man sentenced to death for 2010 Hawaiian Gardens triple-slaying

NORWALK >> A judge sentenced a Montebello man to death three times over Friday for a 2010 AK-47 attack on his ex-girlfriend’s family in Hawaiian Gardens, leaving three people dead and another seriously wounded.
Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Raul Sahagun ordered Joseph Mercado, 32, to death row for the early-morning May 6, 2010 triple-slaying that claimed the lives of his ex-girlfriend Serena Tarin, 23, her brother Alfredo Tarin Jr., 19, and her father Alfredo Tarin Sr., 54, Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office spokeswoman Sarah Ardalani said.
Also critically wounded in the rampage at the family’s home in the 21900 block of Devlin Avenue was Serena Tarin’s mother, who survived. Six additional family members fled from the home, some of them hiding on the roof of the home, which Mercado had doused with gasoline and set afire before breaking in through the back of the home and opening fire with an AK-47 assault rifle, authorities said.
A Norwalk jury convicted Mercado in November of 10 felony counts. They included three counts of first-degree murder, three counts of attempted murder, first degree burglary, shooting at an inhabited dwelling, arson of an inhabited structure and child abuse.
The jury also found true the special circumstances of multiple murders, lying in wait and engaging in arson — each one making him eligible for the death penalty. The jury also found true the special allegations that Mercado personally used a firearm in the crimes and personally inflicted great bodily injury.
He was acquitted of a single count of assault with a deadly weapon.
The jury recommended Mercado be put to death for his crimes during the penatty phase of the trial, Ardalani said.
Following the shooting, Mercado was arrested after being shot by a sheriff’s deputy after exiting the home with his rifle still-in hand, officials said.
Mercado and Serena Tarin had an infant son together, sheriff’s investigators said. The 9-month-old child was unharmed in the incident.
Authorities said the shooting took place amid a custody dispute between Mercado and Tarin, who had been separated for several months.

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UPDATED: Three wounded in Bassett drive-by shooting


BASSETT >> A drive-by shooting in residential neighborhood in Bassett late Thursday left two men and a woman wounded, officials said.
Deputies sought three suspects in connection with the 7:30 p.m. shooting in the 13600 block of Moccasin Street, in the unincorporated county area, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. Robert Tubbs said.
The victims, a man in his 20s, a woman in her 20s and a man in his 30s, were all hospitalized with stable vital signs, the lieutenant said.
Three men were inside a passing older-model, black, four-door Nissan Maxima with tinted windows when one of the occupants opened fire with a semi-automatic handgun fitted with a laser sight, officials said.
Initial reports from the scene indicated the shooter was a Latino man of about 30 years old, wearing a black mask and a black shirt.
Tubbs said the victims were standing in front of a home when shot, Tubbs said.
The investigation remained in its early stages Thursday night, however the shooting appeared to be gang-related, Tubbs said.
Anyone with information can reach the sheriff’s Industry Station at 626-330-3322. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.

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Shooting death in Whittier ruled a suicide

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.

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Man sought in armed robbery of woman at Hacienda Heights park

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HACIENDA HEIGHTS >> Investigators Thursday released a sketch of a man who robbed a woman of her purse at gunpoint inside the women’s restroom at a Hacienda Heights park last week.
The crime took place about 3:35 p.m. Jan. 22 at Countrywood Park, 16817 Copper Hill Drive, Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials said in a written statement.
“The victim was exiting the restroom stall when she was confronted by the suspect, who was holding a black handgun and demanded her purse,” according to the statement.
The woman handed over her purse, and the robber fled in an older-model, tan or brown, four-door Toyota Camry. He was described as a Latino man between 30 and 40 years old, 5 feet 8 inches tall, 180 pound, with black hair, brown eyes and a goatee. He wore a gray shirt and dark blue pants.
Anyone with information is encouraged to contact Detective Steven Lanigan of the sheriff’s Parks Services Bureau at 661-294-3544.

SKETCH courtesy of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.

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Charges filed against man accused of beating nephews to death in Arcadia

Arcadia High students and parents attend a vigil for slain students Anthony Lin, 15, and William Lin, 16, at the Arcadia, Calif. campus January 25, 2016. The brothers were allegedly beaten to death in their home by their uncle. (Photo by Leo Jarzomb/Pasadena Star-News)

Arcadia High students and parents attend a vigil for slain students Anthony Lin, 15, and William Lin, 16, at the Arcadia, Calif. campus January 25, 2016. The brothers were allegedly beaten to death in their home by their uncle. (Photo by Leo Jarzomb/Pasadena Star-News)

ARCADIA >> Prosecutors have filed murder charges against a San Gabriel Valley man accused of beating his two teenage nephews to death with a bolt cutter at their home in Arcadia last weekend, officials said Thursday.
Deyun Shi, also known as Jeff Shi, 44, was charged with two counts of murder, along with a count of domestic violence causing great bodily injury, as he awaits extradition proceedings in Hong Kong, where he was captured the day after the double-slaying, Los Angeles County District Attorney’s officials said.
Deyun_ShiThe murder charges listed in an extradition arrest warrant obtained Wednesday are accompanied by “an allegation that the defendant used a deadly and dangerous weapon, a bolt cutter, in the commission of the crimes,” district attorney’s office spokesman Ricardo Santiago said in a written statement.
The domestic assault charge stems from an alleged attack on Shi’s estranged wife at her La Cañada home on Jan. 21, the day before the bodies of his nephews Anthony Lin, 15, and his brother William Lin, 16, were found by their mother at the family’s home in the 400 block of Fairview Avenue in Arcadia.
In the domestic attack, Shi is accused of striking his estranged wife with a maul, or wood-splitting hammer, according to Los Angeles County sheriff’s and district attorney’s officials.
Arraignment was to be scheduled later pending extradition proceedings, officials said.
“If convicted as charged, Shi faces a maximum sentence of life in state prison,” Santiago said.
Deputies began seeking Shi late Jan 21, after he allegedly attacked his wife with a wood-splitting tool, Lt. Eddie Hernandez of the sheriff’s Homicide Bureau said. The woman suffered serious but non-life-threatening injuries.
The parents of the Lin brothers had gone to check on the injured victim late on Jan. 21, Hernandez said. They returned home in the early morning hours Jan. 22 and did not notice anything wrong before they went to bed.
About 12:40 p.m., Anthony and William’s mother awoke and discovered her sons dead, officials said. One of the boys was found on the first floor of the two-story apartment situated on top of a parking garage. The other brother’s body was found upstairs.
Shi is married to the sister of the slain brothers’ father, Hernandez said.
The manhunt for Shi intensified following the discovery of his nephews’ body.
His alleged violent crime spree began after he learned his wife had filed for divorce and obtained a restraining order against him, investigators said.
He was detained when his airplane landed in Hong Kong, officials said. Detectives initially said his ultimate destination may have been Beijing.
Officials said Shi had been staying with a friend in Alhambra and conducted business in San Gabriel at the time of the crimes.
Community members honored the Lin brothers Monday during a vigil at their school, Arcadia High School, where Anthony was a freshman and William was a junior, according to Arcadia Unified School District officials.

DONATIONS: https://www.gofundme.com/neverforgetlin

 

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Would-be robber pulls gun on gardeners in Pasadena


PASADENA >> Police are seeking a man who pulled a handgun on two gardeners in Pasadena during a failed robbery Thursday.
The two victims, a 51-year-old man and an 18-year-old man, were sitting on a curb in the 2400 block of Lambert Drive eating their lunch about 11:30 a.m. when the would-be robber approached in a white compact car, Pasadena police Lt. Mark Goodman said.
“He drove up beside them and he pointed a chrome semi-auto handgun at them and demanded their money,” Goodman said. The gardeners replied that they had no money.
The robber again demanded cash, and the victims again told him they had none, before the gunman drove off empty-handed, Goodman said. He was described as a Latino man between 30 and 35 years old, with a mustache.

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Teen accused of robbing woman of cell phone in Pasadena


PASADENA >> Police arrested a teenage boy Wednesday afternoon on suspicion of robbing a woman of her cell phone on a Pasadena sidewalk, officials said.
The strong-arm robbery unfolded about 12:20 p.m. as the victim, a 36-year-old woman, was standing in the 600 block of Mar Vista Avenue when a group of four young men passed by, Pasadena police Lt. Mark Goodman said. As the group passed her by, one of them grabbed the woman’s Samsung Galaxy cell phone from her hand.
The group ran to nearby McDonald Park, where police soon found them, Goodman said.
The suspect was found to still be in possession of the victim’s cellular telephone, and was positively IDd by the victim,” the lieutenant said.
The 17-year-old Los Angeles boy was booked on suspicion of robbery and taken to a juvenile hall, Goodman said.

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Dog found in Montebello dumpster had to be euthanized

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MONTEBELLO >> A small white dog pulled from a dumpster by Montebello police Tuesday night had to be euthanized after it was determined the animal had been badly wounded in an attack by a coyote or another dog, officials said.
Police found the dog Tuesday night, abandoned in a dumpster behind a business in the 600 block of West Whittier Boulevard, Montebello police Sgt. Marc Marty said.
“We were saddened that someone would do such a thing, but we were happy that we were able to rescue the dog,” police said in a written statement. “The dog appeared to be in good condition at the time and was taken by our partners at (the South East Area Animal Control Authority) to be cared for.
But upon calling SEAACA to check on the dog, police received sad news.
“We were extremely saddened to find out that after the dog was cleaned up several untreatable puncture wounds were located on his neck, possibly from a coyote or a dog,” according to the police statement. “Due to these wounds, the dog had to be humanly euthanized.”
Officials thanked community members who expressed concern for the dog and eagerness to adopt it, as well as their partner’s at SEAACA.
A listing of animals available for adoption is available online at www.seaaca.org.

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UPDATED: Hacienda Heights woman goes missing in Monterey Park found safe in Rosemead

MONTEREY PARK >> A 68-year-old Hacienda Heights woman with Alzheimer’s disease and other medical problem who vanished from a Monterey Park restaurant Wednesday afternoon was reunited with her worried family Wednesday evening, officials said.
Su Zhen Liao was dining with family about 4 p.m. at the Ocean Star dim sum restaurant, 145 N. Atlantic Blvd., when she went to use the restroom, Monterey Park police Lt. Eric Kim said. She failed to return, and worried family members soon reported her missing.
“(Liao) suffers from Alzheimer’s disease and takes various medications for various medical conditions,” police said in a written statement.
A family member spotted Liao walking along San Gabriel Boulevard near the 60 Freeway in the Rosemead area, Kim said. She was unharmed.

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Man flees with computer following Craigslist transaction-turned-robbery in Arcadia

ARCADIA >> A man trying to sell his laptop computer online ended up getting robbed when he met the purported buyer in Arcadia Wednesday afternoon, officials said.
The victim had arranged to sell his laptop on Craigslist.com and went to meet another person who had responded to the advertisement about 2:30 p.m. in the parking lot of a business in the 100 block of East Huntington Drive, near 1st Avenue, Arcadia police Sgt. Tony Juarez said.
“As the victim approached the suspect with laptop in hand, the suspect struck the victim and took the laptop,” Juarez said in a written statement. “The suspect then entered a newer red Ford Mustang with paper plates and fled the area.”
The victim suffered a minor injury from the punch but declined to be taken to a hospital, officials said. Officers searched the area but did not find the robber, described as a Latino man of 25 to 30 years old, about 6 feet tall and of heavy build. He wore a black hooded sweatshirt during the crime.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Arcadia police at 626-574-5150. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.

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