Whittier checkpoint nets 1 DUI arrest, 10 citations

WHITTIER >> Police arrested one alleged drunken driver and issued 10 citations during an overnight checkpoint in Whittier, officials said Saturday.
Officers screened 1,216 drivers during the checkpoint, which was held from 7:30 p.m. Friday to 3 a.m. Saturday on Whittier Boulevard at Redman Avenue, just east of the 605 Freeway, Whittier police Lt. Aaron Ruiz said.
Two drivers were given field sobriety tests, however only one of them was ultimately arrested for DUI, he said.
Officers cited nine people for driving without licenses and issued one additional “miscellaneous” citation, Ruiz said.
Police impounded two cars, one of them for 30 days, he added.

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UPDATED: Man arrested following East Valinda stabbing

EAST VALINDA >> A man is accused of stabbing his friend during an argument in East Valinda Friday, officials said.
The alleged attack took place about 3 p.m. in the area of Valley Boulevard and La Seda Road, in an unincorporated county area surrounded by West Covina, La Puente and Industry, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Sgt. David Contreras of the sheriff’s Industry Station said.
Deputies ultimately booked Manuel Castellanos, 22, on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon, Capt. Tim Murakami said. He was believed to be a local resident.
The suspect and his alleged victim, also a man in his 20s, became involved in a dispute, Contreras said. The suspect pulled a knife, stabbing the victim in the torso and slicing his arm.
Contreras said the attacker fled from the scene but was soon captured by deputies.
Authorities said the victim was taken to a hospital, where he was listed in stable condition.
The suspect’s name was not available.
According to county booking records, Castellanos was being held in lieu of $30,000 bail his arraignment, scheduled Wednesday in West Covina Superior Court.

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UPDATED: Missing Pasadena woman found safe in Los Angeles

PASADENA >> A missing autistic woman with bipolar disorder and high blood pressure who went missing Wednesday turned up safe and sound at a Los Angeles bus stop Saturday, police said.
Authorities sought the public’s help in finding Gena Richardson, 46, after she disappeared from her home Pasadena home Wednesday afternoon. She had possibly been spotted at the Memorial Park Gold Line Station the same day.
A woman who recognized Richardson from media coverage saw her Saturday morning at a bus stop at the corner of Adams Boulevard and Figueora Street, Pasadena police Lt. John Luna said. The good Samaritan flagged down a Los Angeles police officer.
Luna said Richardson was unharmed and was being reunited with her family.

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Meth lab discovered in Alhambra apartment


ALHAMBRA >> Police discovered a methamphetamine lab inside an Alhambra apartment Friday, officials said.
Officers checking up on an elderly man at the request of his landlord found the clandestine drug lab about 1:40 p.m. at an apartment in a complex at 110 N. Chapel Avenue, Alhambra police Sgt. Jerry Johnson said.
A landlord asked police to check on the apartment after not hearing from it’s elderly resident for several days, the sergeant said. “He was very concerned.”
Police went to the apartment and found “large pots filled with foul-smelling chemicals” throughout, Johnson said. No one was at the home, and the apartment did not appear as if anyone lived there.
Officials evacuated nine people from nearby apartments as they summoned a hazardous materials crew and a California Department of Justice team specializing in meth lab clean-up, Johnson said.
Preliminary testing confirmed the operation was a methamphetamine lab, he said.
It was not immediately clear who was responsible for the lab, or whether the elderly man police were initially sent to check on was involved, police said. The resident still had not been found Friday evening.
No suspects were in custody as the investigation continued, Johnson said.
The evacuated residents were allowed to return to their homes about 6:30 p.m., Johnson said. The clean-up process continued Friday night.

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Two sought in connection with failed kidnapping of Montebello woman

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MONTEBELLO >> Police released a sketch Friday of one of two men sought in connection with the failed kidnapping of a Montebello woman at the laundry room of an apartment building earlier this week.
The woman and her husband fought of the two attackers, who remain at-large, Montebello police officials said in a written statement.
The crime took place about 9 a.m. Monday in the laundry room of an apartment complex in the 100 block of North 10th Street, Sgt. Marc Marty said.
One of the two men, who was wearing a mask, grabbed hold of the woman by the hair and began pulling her into the laundry room, the sergeant said. The woman, who was in her early-30s, managed to break free. The two suspects ran in different directions.
”The victim’s husband was nearby at the time and saw a male suspect run down his driveway,” according to the police statement.
“The victim’s husband chased and caught the suspect in the street and a fight ensued,” the statement said.
During the fight, the masked suspect who initially grabbed the woman returned to the scene and punched the husband, causing him to release the other suspect.
Both attackers fled in a white, 1995- to 2000-model Chevrolet S-10 pickup truck, Marty said.
Neither the woman or her husband suffered significant injury, police said.
As the suspects fled, they dropped a bag containing rope, Marty said.
Since the crime was not completed, it was unclear what the attackers’ ultimate goal was, the sergeant said. It was unclear if they committed the failed kidnapping as part of an attempted robbery, a sexual assault or some other crime.
Police described the first suspect, who grabbed the woman, as a male, 6 feet 2 inches tall, wearing a mask, gloves and a dark-colored gray and black shirt and blue jeans.
His accomplice was described only as male, wearing a gray hooded sweatshirt and a baseball cap.
Anyone with information was asked to contact Montebello police Detective Zabala at 323-887-1254.

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Police checkpoint planned tonight in Whittier

WHITTIER >> Police plan to check motorists for sobriety and valid licenses at a checkpoint tonight in Whittier.
The checkpoint will take place at an undisclosed location within the city between 7:30 p.m. Friday and 3 a.m. Saturday, Whittier police officials said in a written statement.
“Over the course of the past three years, DUI collisions have claimed three lives and resulted in 135 injury crashes harming 188 of our friends and neighbors,” Sgt. David Elizarraras said.
Funding for tonight’s checkpoint is being provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

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UPDATED: Azusa man fatally shot while walking to work; slaying may have stemmed from robbery


AZUSA >> A gunman fatally shot an Azusa man as he walked to work early Friday during what officials said appeared to have been a robbery gone awry.
The victim, 37, was hospitalized in “extremely critical” condition following the 4:37 a.m. shooting at Azusa Avenue and Russell Street, Azusa police Officer Mike Bires said in a written statement.
He succumbed to his injuries Friday afternoon, Lt. John Corina of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau said. His name was not available pending positive identification by coroner’s officials and notification of his family.
“Based on the initial investigation it appears the shooting might have been the result of an attempted street robbery,” Bires said.
The victim himself called police to report being shot, the lieutenant said. No other witnesses reported hearing or seeing the shooting.
Officers responded to report of a shooting when the found the victim lying wounded on a grass parkway between the street and sidewalk along the north side of Russell Street, just east of Azusa Avenue, officials said.
Paramedics took the gravely wounded man to Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center, where he was ultimately pronounced dead, Corina said.
“The victim was able to make some statements before he went unconscious,” Corina said.
But other than indicating he had been shot during a robbery, the lieutenant declined to discuss what the victim said.
It was not clear if anything had been stolen from the man.
No suspect description or further details were released as detectives continued pursuing leads, Corina said.
The victim was on his way to work when he was shot, Corina said.
“He was on his way to a friend’s house to drive to work together, he added.
Investigators turned to the public for help.
“Since Azusa Avenue is a main thoroughfare through Azusa, there may have been witnesses to this crime,” Bires said.
Once the victim died from his injuries, police turned the investigation over the detectives from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau. Handling investigators could not be reached for comment Friday afternoon.
Anyone with information can reach the bureau at 323-890-5500. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.

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Man killed after crashing car into Caltrans truck on 10 Freeway offramp in Pomona


POMONA >> A man died on an offramp of the 10 Freeway in Pomona Thursday after rear-ending a Caltrans truck while allegedly fleeing the scene of a previous minor collision, officials said.
The crash took place about 1:50 p.m. on the Fairplex Drive offramp of the eastbound 10 Freeway, California Highway Patrol Officer Rodrigo Jimenez said.
The name of the dead man was not released pending confirmation of his identity and notification of family members, he said. CHP officials initially believed to be a 36-year-old Palm Desert man.
He had been involved in a less-severe collision involving only minor injuries on the eastbound 10 Freeway just before the fatal collision, Jimenez said.
It appeared he was fleeing the scene of the first crash when he rear ended an elevated work platform truck stopped in a coned-off section of the offramp to work on electrical lines, the officer said.
The driver of the Caltrans truck was unhurt, he said. There was no one inside the bucket of the elevator truck.
Firefighters cut the Honda driver free of his 2001 Honda Civic before pronouncing him dead at the scene, according to Jimenez.
A 40-year-old Whittier man driving the car that the Honda initially struck and his passenger, a 49-year-old Moreno Valley woman, suffered apparently minor injuries, he added.
Officials shut down the offramp as they investigated the scene, Jimenez said. Traffic on the 10 Freeway was slowed as a result of the crash, though none of the traffic lanes were blocked.
The crash remained under investigation by officers from the Baldwin Park office of the CHP.

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Repeat sex offender from Glendora gets 13-year prison sentence

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GLENDORA >> A repeat sex offender caught viewing pictures of seminude young girls at the Glendora Public Library has begun serving a 13-year prison following his sentencing Wednesday, authorities said.
A Pomona Superior Court Judge sentenced Kirk Brian Eggleston, 49, of Glendora to 13 years and 4 months in state prison after being convicted Oct. 20 of possession of child pornography and attempted child pornography with prior convictions, Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office spokeswoman Sarah Ardalani said in a written statement.
Eggleston was previously convicted of committing lewd and lascivious acts with a child under 14 in 2003, child molestation in 2004 and indecent exposure in 2006, Ardalani said.
At his sentencing Wednesday, Judge Juan Carlos Dominguez also ordered Eggleston, who was already a registered sex offender, to continue registering for the rest of his life, officials said.
The most recent case stems from a Feb. 9, 2014 in incident at the Glendora Public Library, 140 S. Glendora Avenue.
“Library staff noticed the defendant looking at images of seminude young girls and called police,” Ardalani said. “Authorities arrived and also viewed Eggleston looking at the inappropriate pictures.”
Glendora police investigators testified during Eggleston’s trial that they found search terms used to find child pornography had been entered into the library computer while Eggleston was using, officials said. Inappropriate images were also found on the computer.
“Additionally, police inspected the defendant’s home computer and found child pornography search terms, but no pictures,” Ardalani said.

PHOTO of Kirk Eggleston, 49, of Glendora – courtesy

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UPDATED: One dead, one wounded in Norwalk shooting

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NORWALK >> An argument between two acquaintances escalated into gunfire Thursday, leaving one man dead and another wounded at a Norwalk, officials said.
The investigation remained in its early stages, however it initially appeared a man who lived at the home shot and wounded the other man before turning the gun on himself, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. Eric Smitson said.
Deputies first responded about 1:40 p.m. to the shooting at a home at Halcourt Avenue and Mapledale Street, Los Angeles County sheriff’s and fire officials said.
Deputies and firefighters encountered two victims at the scene, officials said. One was found outside home, and the other was inside. Both were initially described only as men.
The specific relationship between the two men was not clear, but they were believed to know each other, Smitson said.
“An argument ensued. It appears the suspect then shot at the victim, who sustained one gun shot wound,” the lieutenant said. The wounded man was taken to a hospital with a leg wound and listed in stable condition.
“Initial reports are the suspect apparently turned the gun on himself,” Smitson said. He was pronounced dead inside the house.
No further details were available.

PHOTO by Leo Jarzomb

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