Sheriff’s unsure about Evacuation area in Altadena

There is no clear boundaries to the area being evacuated in Altadena. 

Watch commanders at both the Altadena station and Crescenta Valley are not taking phone calls. 
No one has communicated with the HQ Bureau about the boundaries of the area in Altadena under mandatory evacuations. Sheriff’s are enforcing some sort of mandatory evacuation nonetheless. 

Here’s what seems to be happening. Homes north of Loma Alta are under orders to evacuate. The eastern and western boundaries remain unclear, although the La Vina neighborhood at the top of Lincoln Avenue has been evacuated.

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Inciweb: Station Fire continues to grow — 5 percent contained

Basic Information

Incident Type Wildfire
Cause Under Investigation
Date of Origin Wednesday August 26th, 2009 approx 03:30 PM
Location Los Angeles River Ranger District / Angeles National Forest
Incident Commander Jim Hall

Current Situation

Total Personnel 751
Size 5,000 acres
Estimated Containment Date Tuesday September 08th, 2009 approx 06:00 PM
Fuels Involved

Very heavy fuels of ceanothus, chamise, scrub oak and manzanita across the entire fire area, 15 to 20 feet in height with Big Cone Douglas Fier in the drainage bottoms. Fuels have not experienced any significant large fire activity in the past 40 years.

Fire Behavior

Friday behavior was very active to extreme, with rapid rates of spread and flame lenghts up to 80 feet. There is a potential for Saturday’s fire behavior to be similar to Friday. Around noon Saturday, after the inversion has lifted, expect actively spreading fire with upslope runs. Spotting may occur from 1/4 mile up to 1/2 mile.

Significant Events

3 Mandatory Evacuations as of early Saturday morning include Starlight Crest Drive north to Green Ridge Court, including Forest Green Drive, two, Big Briar Way at Haskel, and third, Donna Maria Lane, Indian Drive, Hacienda Drive, Alta Canada Rd., North of Linda Vista, La Canada Blvd. north of El Vago Street. Evacuation Center: La Canada High School, 4463 Oak Grove Drive, La Canada, CA. Angeles Crest Highway remains closed.


Planned Actions

Prepare and protect structures when and where necessary. Construct handlines and dozer lines.

Growth Potential


Terrain Difficulty

Extremely steep and inaccessible


1800 homes threatened. 27 commercial properties and 52 other stuctures threatened.

Current Weather

Wind Conditions 5-8 mph E
Temperature 80 degrees
Humidity 30%

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Station Fire heads toward Altadena

ALTADENA – Sheriff’s Search and Rescue team members are heading for Altadena neighborhods in Millard Canyon, La Vina and The Meadows warning residents to be ready to leave if the Station Fire continues to spread east.

“You can’t help but be worried,” said Sheriff’s Law Enforcement Technician Ruby Kinkle. “We’re advising people they should be ready to evacuate.”

Meadows resident Lee Stapensky said it appeared to him that the fire was getting close to Gould Mesa, which he estimated is a mile from The Meadows, a semi-rural enclave in West Altadena reached by a single road.

“It looks as if it’s approximately at the ridge west of Gould Mesa,” said Stensky, who has been monitoring the fire since Friday morning.

Fire Service spokesman Bruce Quintelier said that, based on other hearsay reports, what Stepensky has seen “in a general fashion, may not be too far from being correct – spot on.”

The fire has been burning so rapidly throughout the day that it’s been difficult to keep up with mapping its perimeters, Quintelier said.

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Altadena OIS reported

This from reporter Robert Hong in Pasadena:

ALTADENA – A man was shot by a Los Angeles County Sheriff’s deputy at about 9:30 p.m. Tuesday in the 3000 block of Highview Avenue, authorities said.

No deputies were harmed in the incident, and the man was taken to a local hospital.

No details were released as to why the man was shot.

No further information was available.

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Teen shot in Altadena gang attack

A gang shooting laft a 19-year-old wounded in Altadena early Thursday. Few deatils are available. Police are seeking the shooter. Here’s our story:

ALTADENA – A 19-year-old man was shot in front of a liquor store in Altadena Thursday morning, authorities said.

The man was shot twice in front of Johnny’s Liquor at the corner of Fair Oaks Avenue and Harriet Street at 7:54 a.m., said Lt. Greg Sisneros with the Altadena sheriff’s station.

The victim was transported to Huntington Hospital, Sisneros said.

The suspect fled on foot with a handgun, possibly a revolver. He is described him as a black male in his mid-twenties, wearing a gray sweatshirt and blue jeans. He is 5’6″ and 180 pounds, Sisneros said.

Sheriff’s deputies are treating this as a gang-related shooting, Sisneros said.

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LAPD picks up suspected Altadena molester

This from staff and wire reports:

LOS ANGELES  — An Altadena man made his first court appearance today on
charges that he molested two 9-year-old girls, including one of his students,
while he was working as a teacher about 20 years ago.

Mark Walter Sonnenburg, 53, is scheduled to be arraigned Oct. 20 on three
felony counts filed last Friday involving the two alleged victims, according to
Sandi Gibbons of the District Attorney’s Office.

One of the girls was a student at Eagle Rock Montessori School,
where he taught at the time, Gibbons said.

He had more recently taught at The Walden School in Pasadena where he worked until March, according to a statement released by that

“We have determined that these allegations do not involve any former or current
student from our school and are based on a time more than two decades ago,”
Walden School’s statement says. “Prior to learning of the allegations, the
school never received any information, complaint or allegation of this kind
involving Mr. Sonnenburg — before or during his tenure at the school.”

The Walden School said it had been contacted by authorities during the last
school year, had been fully cooperating with the investigation and conducted
its own independent investigation.

Sonnenburg was arrested last Friday by officers from the Los Angeles Police
Department’s Northeast Division. He has remained jailed since then in lieu of
$300,000 bail.

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