SOUTH WHITTIER >> A 21-year-old Whittier man is accused of attacking a 93-year-old man and threatening him with a knife after the elderly victim tried to intervene in an argument between the suspect and another man, officials said.
Deputies jailed Mario Luiz Sanchez on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon, elder abuse and criminal threats about 2:30 p.m., shortly after the confrontation at Amelia Mayberry Park, 13201 Meyer Road in the unincorporated county area of South Whittier, according to Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials and booking records.
The nonagenarian was at the park when he noticed to men arguing and tried to defuse the situation, sheriff’s officials said in a written statement.
“(Sanchez) became aggressive and repeatedly pushed the victim, causing him to fall to the ground,” according to the statement. “The suspect stood over the victim while holding a knife, threatening to harm him if he did not stop interfering. The suspect fled the scene, promising to return with friends.”
Deputies from the sheriff’s Parks Bureau quickly found and arrested the suspect, officials said.
The elderly victim was treated for injuries at a hospital and had since been released, authorities said Thursday.
According to county booking records, Sanchez was being held in lieu of $75,000 bail his initial court appearance, scheduled Friday in the Downey branch of Los Angeles County Superior Court.
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.