Thursday fish wrap

Octomom update: She’s out of the hospital and news crews are fleeing toward her home in Whittier. State wants to know how she got so pregnant..

Landlord wants rent from massacre victim. Local media picked this one up…interesting take on Fox 11 this a.m. — reporter led with “This story, if accurate, …”

Another teen attacked in Baldwin Park..

Jerry Brown speaks at the Quiet Canon. He thinks federal bailout money should be applied to criminal justice programs in California.

Suspect hits deputy with vehicle in Rosemead after dispute over iPOD.

Woman has her purse taken as she stands in front of home.

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Florencia 13 gang members guilty in federal conspiracy case

La Eme connected Florencia 13 members were convicted Monday in a federal RICO case that included allegations of attempte murder, firearm violations and drug charges. A large component of the case rested on the gang targeting blacks, according to a press release from the United States Department of Justice.

Here’s the release:

Ten members and associates of Florencia 13 (F13), a street gang involved in narcotics distribution and shootings of African-Americans, were convicted today on a host of federal criminal charges, including racketeering and narcotics distribution.

The 10 defendants were found guilty today after a 3-month trial. They are among 102 defendants named in four F13-related indictments that were returned by a federal grand jury in the fall of 2007. The investigation into F13, which was called Operation Joker’s Wild, led to the largest gang takedown in American history, with 96 of the 102 defendants being taken into custody. Seventy-six of the defendants have now been convicted, either at trial or as the result of guilty pleas, with the remaining defendants pending trial.

<snip>

“The investigation into Florencia 13 demonstrated the power of law enforcement coming together to combat organized street gangs,” said United States Attorney Thomas P. O’Brien. “This gang – which targeted African-Americans, whether or not they posed a threat to the gang’s drug-trafficking operations – posed an imminent danger. As a result of this prosecution, the residents of South Los Angeles can live a little easier knowing that these dangerous gangsters have been taken off the street.”

John A. Torres, Special Agent in Charge of the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, stated: “We are very pleased with the verdicts today. This sends a clear message that the community will not tolerate the heinous activity perpetrated by Florencia 13. These convictions will go a long way toward reducing violence and returning peace to the neighborhoods.”

Azusa PD and Baldwin Park PD officers took part in the operation, officials said.

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Baldwin Park mayor under investigation

Manny Lozano’s all-expense paid trip to China caught the eye of Dave Demerjian who heads the DAs Public Integrity unit. Apparently he didn’t declare the trip on his form 700 as required by state Campaign Finance law. Here’s the story:

BALDWIN PARK - The District Attorney’s Office is reviewing conflict-of-interest allegations involving Mayor Manuel Lozano, officials said.

The agency received a complaint in September and has been probing the issue since, said Dave Demerjian, head of the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office Public Integrity Division.

Demerjian would not divulge details about the complaint nor say who filed it.

Local businessman Greg Tuttle said though he didn’t file the complaint, the District Attorney’s review stems from a grievance he did file last year with the California Fair Political Practices Commission.

In that complaint, Tuttle alleged Lozano took an all-expenses paid trip to China in 2007, but never claimed the trip on his statement of economic interests.

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Suspected peeper captured in Baldwin Park

Here’s the story as written by Emma Gallegos this morning:

BALDWIN PARK – A man suspected of peering into a young girl’s window and exposing himself to her was arrested this morning after police followed a trail of footprints, cigarette butts and other evidence leading to him.

Jason Francis Orefice, 31, was booked on suspicion of attempted burglary and indecent exposure following the 5:30 a.m. incident.

The girl reported that she woke up to see the silhouette of a man outside her bedroom window in the 14100 block of Olive Street . She told her dad, who went outside and found a man performing a sex act on himself near the window. He chased the suspect away and called police, Lt. David Reynoso said.

There were marks on the window showing that someone had attempted to break into the girl’s room, Reynoso said. Police tracked the suspect’s footprints, fresh cigarette butts and a pry bar that may have been used on the window to a residence one street north in the 14100 block of Masline Street, Reynoso said. They knocked on the door and found Orefice, police said. One witness positively identified Orefice, Reynoso said.

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Notes from a kidnapping case

Here’s my notes from an interview with Baldwin Park police Chief Lili Hadsell regarding Wednesday’s kidnapping at Union Station. What do you make of the story?

There were two vicims. The case was called in last night between 7:30 and 7:50

they had been at union station where they met.

The female victim was walking to the male victim’s car in the US parking lot when she was bumped by a man who was wearing all black clothing –possibly resembling a federal agent.

He forced the couple to drive to the Big Dalton address where a safe with $20,000 and several documents was taken.

THe victims agreed to meet at Union Station. She meets him apparently at his car. SOmeone bumps into her and tells her to getinto the car. He gets inthe back seat and says drive me to your residence. When they arrive all three get out. He has them open the door and says, “close your eyes.” He pushes them inside. THe suspect instructs the victims to tell him where the safe is or he will kill them. Apprently he goes into a room there the safe is.

THis is not a random situation. THere is a possibility that the victim knew the suspect.

AFter the suspect fled, the victims opened their eyes, They run to the car and drive to Glendale. The female decided to wait there until her husband got home.

WHen her husband got home he noticed the home had been burglarized and called the police department., We respond. SHe tells the husband what happened.

It is not clear if there is a video monitoring system at Union Station.

THe suspect was described as a male, of unknown race, approximately 55. He was 6’1″ and weighed 190 pounds. He had a medium build. He was wearing dark clothing and was clean shaven. The victim has not been asked to put together an identi-kit.

Victim #2 is a resident of GLendale. He requested confidentiality.

“We want the residents fo Los Angeles and Baldwin Park to know that this is not a random kidnapping,” hadsell said.

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Two nabbed at Union Station, taken to Baldwin Park and robbed *

Two people were kidnapped at gunpoint from Union Station in Los Angeles and taken to Baldwin Park where they were robbed, officials said. *

Interestingly enough, even though we knew the kidnapping had taken place when we called Baldwin Park’s watch commander this a.m. he said there was nothing going on and the night was quiet.

If this is what passes for a quiet night in Baldwin Park, I’d hate to find out what a busy night is really like:

BALDWIN PARK – Two people who were kidnapped at Union Station were allegedly brought to the 3300 block of Big Dalton Road, where they were beaten and robbed, according to Sgt. Kevin Gauthier of the Baldwin Park Police Department.

Baldwin Park police responded to the overnight incident, but officials had little information this morning.


 

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BP shooting outside High School leaves man wounded

A 15-year-old armed with a shotgun on Puente Avenue accidentally shot his 18-year-old companion, police said.

Anyway, here’s the story as we’re reporting it:

BALDWIN PARK — An 18-year-old man remains in stable condition this morning after being accidentally shot by a friend Thursday, officials said.

Police are not releasing the man’s name but said Friday his wounds are not life threatening, according to Baldwin Park Police Lt. David Reynoso.

Around 3:47 p.m. the man was among friends in the garage of a residence watching television on the 3900 block of Puente Avenue, officials said.

One of the friends – a 15-year-old boy – allegedly had a shotgun, which police believe he accidentally discharged, striking the 18-year-old in the upper torso, Reynoso said.

The 15-year-old was arrested and booked on charges of assault with a deadly weapon and possession of a shotgun, police said.

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A tale of our times

This came in the form of a letter to the editor. We haven’t had time to check it out yet, but it follows the pattern of recent thefts targeting high-value copper wire. A recent burglary happened earlier this year at Highlander Field in Hacienda Heights. Here’s the letter (unedited):

I wasnt sure if your paper had been notified that Baldwin Park
National Little League had been burglarized last Thursday night. The
electrical wiring that powers the outdoor field lights had been
pulled out going all the way back to the electrical panels. This was
discovered friday evening when two girls Softball teams had arrived
to play their game. The lights had last been used Thursday night
around 7pm. The Gate lock had been cut off the week prior but had not
yet been replaced by the school district even after being notified as
soon as it had been discovered.

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Former Baldwin Park cop likely headed to prison

Dave Gunderson, a former member of the Baldwin Park Police Department, is probably headed to state prison after his conviction on several firearm related charges.

From The Eureka Times-Standard:

Former Blue Lake Police Chief David Gundersen faces a state prison sentence of up to three years and eight months for the illegal possession of a submachine gun and a pistol with a silencer, charges a jury convicted him of on Wednesday.

Gundersen will also be sentenced for 11 charges of battery, each of which carry a maximum six month county jail term or a fine of $2,000, or both. He originally faced 24 counts of spousal rape with the use of intoxicant, which carried far longer sentences that might have totaled 72 to 192 years in prison.

The felony firearms convictions effectively end Gundersen’s career as a law enforcement officer, and the misdemeanor battery convictions make would make it illegal for Gundersen to possess firearms.

Gundersen was found not guilty of attempting to dissuade the victim of a crime, but guilty of violating a court order. He will be sentenced on Oct. 22.

On Tuesday, the jury sent a note to Superior Court Judge Bruce Watson shortly before 2 p.m. announcing that it had arrived at a verdict. Since one juror had to leave early, the judge postponed the reading of the verdict until this morning.

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