Coroner: Elderly man found dead in La Crescenta home was beaten to death; case ruled a homicide


LA CRESCENTA >> Coroner’s investigators have determined that a an elderly La Crescenta man found dead at his home last week was beaten to death, and the case was ruled a homicide.
Arthur Palmer, 73, was found dead about 1:30 p.m. on July 24 inside the attached garage of his home in the 3000 block of Frances Avenue, Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials said.
An autopsy determined he died from “multiple blunt force traumatic injuries,” Lt. Kelly Yagerliner said. The death was ruled a homicide.
Deputies discovered Palmer dead after a neighbor asked them to check on him after not seeing him in several days, according to Deputy Juanita Navarro-Suarez of the Sheriff’s Information Bureau. She described Palmer as “a known recluse.”
No further details were released.
Anyone with information is asked to contact the Sheriff’s Homicide 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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Death of elderly man in La Crescenta investigated as homicide


LA CRESCENTA >> The death of an elderly man found dead with serious head injuries in his La Crescenta home Friday is being investigated as a homicide, sheriff’s officials said.
A Friday afternoon call from a concerned resident who hadn’t seen his neighbor for several days prompted deputies to check on man in the 3000 block of Frances Avenue, Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials said. Deputies found a man in his 70s dead inside the home, and summoned homicide detectives to investigate what sheriff’s officials initially described as a “suspicious death.”
“The victim is a male White in his 70’s who died of apparent blunt force trauma,” Deputy Trina Schrader of the Sheriff’s Information Bureau said in a written statement.
“The identity of the victim, and the cause of death will be determined by the coroner,” she said. “There is no suspect information.”
No further details were released. It was unclear whether an intruder had forced entry into the home, or whether anything had been stolen.
Los Angeles County Department of Coroner officials withheld the victim’s name Saturday pending notification of his family, coroner Investigator Mario Sainz said.
It was not clear how long the man had been dead before his body was discovered.
Anyone with information can reach the Sheriff’s Homicide 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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UPDATED: Homicide detectives investigate man’s death in La Crescenta


LA CRESCENTA >> Homicide detectives are investigating the death of an elderly man Friday in a La Crescenta home.
Few details were initially available regarding the investigation, which began about 1:30 p.m. in the 3000 block of Frances Avenue.
Detectives responded the scene, “to investigate the circumstances surrounding the suspicious death of a man,” Deputy Sara Rodriguez of the Sheriff’s Information Bureau said in a written statement.
Deputies first responded to the home after a local resident asked them to “check the welfare” of a neighbor, who had not been seen for several days, Lt. Mohrhoff of the sheriff’s Crescenta Valley Station said.
After discovering the body of a man inside the home, deputies summoned their counterparts in the Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau to take over the investigation, Mohrhoff said.
The man, who was in his 70s, appeared to have suffered “blunt force trauma,” according to deputy Trina Schrader.
“The identity of the victim and the cause of death will be determined by the coroner,” Schrader said.
No further information was released. Anyone with information was asked to contact the Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau at 323-890-5500. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to Los Angeles Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.

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Sunland woman still missing a year after vanishing in La Crescenta

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*Surveillance video show the missing woman arriving at and leaving her sister’s home in La Crescenta before disappearing on June 5, 2015. (Courtesy)
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Friday marks one year since a Sunland woman mysteriously disappeared after leaving a family gathering in La Crescenta, and family members have renewed a $5,000 reward for information leading to her as they continue seeking answers and maintaining hope that she’ll be found safe.
Kimberly Blum, 45, vanished June 5, 2014, after leaving a graduation party for her niece at her sister’s home in the 200 block of Cinco Casitas Lane, according to Los Angeles police officials and family members.
Compounding the pain of missing her daughter is the mystery surrounding what happened to her, said her mother, Rosalie Blum.
“It’s the mystery of it, too,” she said. “It’s really hard to describe. You’re sad, but you don’t know what you’re sad for.”
Kim Blum’s car was never found, and her bank accounts and credit cards have not been used since her disappearance, Detective Cletus Carlton of the LAPD’s Adult Missing Persons Unit said.
“It’s like she just disappeared completely,” the detective said.
The only physical trace left behind was a small bag containing medication and other personal items belonging to Kim Blum found along the side of Angeles Crest Highway, 21 miles north of the 210 Freeway, in the early days of the search.
Nothing has been seen or heard of her since, Carlton said. “We have no new leads.”.
Blum had a cell phone with her when she disappeared, but it was last detected near her sister’s home, Rosalie Blum said.
Carlton said police were working with search and rescue officials and volunteers to organize another search of the area of the Angeles National Forest where Kim Blum’s belonging’s were discovered. Plans for the upcoming search were yet to be finalized, but the family hoped to organize the effort to seek clues around the time of Blum’s 46th birthday on June 30.
Rosalie Blum said after all this time without any sign of her daughter, she wondered if Kim Blum may have disappeared somewhere other than the forest.
“We do know that she had a full tank of gas,” she said.
“They’ve been up there twice with search helicopters. Friends even hired a helicopter and went up to look,” Rosalie Blum said.
“That whole summer, we were up there putting up fliers and posters, and just everything everybody could think of,” she said.
And with a year of hikers and campers traversing the forest, the mother said she found it odd that no additional signs of Kim Blum have turned up.
Family members remained baffled, Rosalie Blum said. “It’s a total, total, disappearance. Even her car,” the mother said.
There was no indication that Kim Blum wanted to be missing, according to her family and police.
She was expecting a friend to visit the following day, and had been making appointments at her personal organizer business, her mother said. And she left behind a beloved pet dog.
Kim Blum, who graduated La Canada high School and the University of Redlands, is white, 5 feet 2 inches tall, 144 pounds, with brown hair and blue eyes. She also wears prescription glasses She was last seen wearing a black tank top, and
Her missing vehicle is a 2004 Honda CRV SUV with California license plate 5JVU774.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Detective Carlton at 213-996-1800. The family has set up a website dedicated to the search for Kim Blum at www.findkim.com.

PHOTO of Kimberly Blum. (Courtesy)

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Police, worried family members seek missing Sunland woman last seen in La Crescenta

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Police and worried family members are asking the public’s help in finding a Sunland woman who mysteriously vanished four weeks ago after stopping by her sister’s home in La Crescenta.
Kimberly Ann Blum, 44, was last seen the afternoon of June 5 as she left her sister’s home in the 2000 block of Cinco Casitas Lane in La Crescenta, according to family members and Los Angeles police officials.
After briefly stopping by the house, where a graduation party was planned for her niece, Blum, suddenly left, her mother Rosalie Blum said.
“She was at a family event, and left, and hasn’t been since,” the worried mother said. “I don’t know if she went to get some air, or what.”
A bag containing some of Kim Blum’s belongings, including medication, was found along Angeles Crest Highway in the Angeles National Forest, about 21 miles north of the 210 Freeway, according to police and family members.
And despite extensive searches of the area, Kim Blum’s silver, 2004 honda CRV SUV with California license plate 5JVU774, remains missing, officials said.
“We’ve exhausted all leads,” Detective Cletus Carlton of the LAPD’s Adult Missing Persons Unit. “We’ve not found her car, which is unusual.”
Finding the SUV may be the key to finding out what happened to Kim Blum, Carlton said.
Police, aided by a Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department helicopter and the Montrose Search and Rescue Team have searched the area where the Kim Blum’s bag was found multiple times since her disappearance, finding no other clues into her whereabouts, Carlton said.
Family members even hired a private helicopter to conduct a search, with no success, Rosalie Blum said. “It’s really, really treacherous terrain up there,” she added.
Kim Blum’ credit cards and bank accounts have not been accessed since her disappearance, police and family members said. “And she didn’t have much cash on her, from what we know,” the mother said.
“She did have a cell phone, a smart phone, but the last ping was at a tower near her sister’s house, so we don’t know whether she turned it off. There hasn’t been anything from that,” Rosalie Blum said.
Rosalie Blum said her daughter has never gone missing before and had been busy making plans at the time of her disappearance.
A friend was scheduled to arrive in town to stay with Kim Blum June 6, Rosalie Blum said. Kim Blum had also made several appointments to meet with clients of her personal organizer business.
Rosalie Blum said she also couldn’t imagine her daughter voluntarily leaving behind her beloved dog, Sadie.
The mother said she planned to head up into the forest again Thursday to pass out fliers with pictures of Kim Blum as far north as Wrightwood.
“You always want to be hopeful,” Rosalie Blum said.
The worried mother asked those who will be recreating in the forest this Independence Day weekend to keep an eye out for Kim Blum or her SUV.
Kim Blum, a graduate of La Canada high School and the University of Redlands, is described as white, 5 feet 2 inches tall, 144 pounds, with brown hair and blue eyes. She was last seen wearing a black tank top, and she also wears prescription glasses.
Anyone with information was asked to contact Detective Carlton at 213-996-1800.

PHOTO of Kim Blum courtesy of the Los Angeles Police Department.

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Drugs stolen in overnight La Crescenta pharmacy break-in

LA CRESCENTA — Two burglars made off with an unknown amount of prescription drugs in an overnight burglary at a Walgreens Pharmacy, authorities said.
Deputies responded to a burglary alarm about 3 a.m. Saturday at the store, 3001 Foothill Blvd., but the burglars had already fled, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Sgt. Randy Tuinstra said.
The two burglars, initially described only as male, smashed the front window of the business to get in, then helped themselves to the pharmaceuticals, the sergeant said.
The type and amount of drugs stolen were not clear Saturday, he added.
Tuinstra said detectives were going over video surveillance footage in hopes of developing a description of the burglars.
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La Canada homes ordered evacuated as storm nears

Evacuations were orders in La Canada Flintridge and La Crescenta. In all 147 homes in La Canada Flintridge and 85 homes in La Crescenta were ordered evacuated. officials did not name the streets involved for “security reasons.”

This from the Los Angeles County Department of Public Works:
The Red Cross has established an evacuation shelter at the Holy Redeemer Church at 
2411 Montrose Avenue, Montrose 91020. The shelter will open at 6:00 p.m. 
‘No Parking During Rain Event’ restrictions are currently in force on posted streets in 
La Canada Flintridge and La Crescenta. Parking will not be allowed on those streets 
during the entire rain event and vehicles will be subject to towing. 
         
Residents are urged to continue to monitor news broadcasts, or visit the CARE website at www.dpwcare.org for further updates as this series of storms approach.
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InciWeb Station Fire update — evacuations, road closures, total acres


Incident Overview

A view of the fire from the Mt. Wislon station cam

Image options: [ Enlarge ] [ Full Size ]

Station Fire Information

August 31, 2009 9:00 a.m.

Fire Status

Fire Name: Station

Geographic Location: Highway 2 North of La Canada – Flintridge, CA

Acres Burned: 85,760

Start Date: August 26, 2009

Time: 3:20 p.m.

Percent Contained: 5%

Estimated Containment Date: 9/15/09

Cause: Under Investigation

Injuries: 3

Threatened:12,000

Commercial Buildings Threatened: 500

Structures Destroyed: 18

Resourses

Cooperators: Forest Service (Lead Agency) with support from Los Angeles County Fire Department, Los Angeles County Sherriffs Department, California State Highway Patrol, Cal Trans, Los Angeles City Fire Department

Approximate Personnel Assigned: 2,575

Helitankers 7

Helicopters 6

Air Tanker 8 (3 additional available as needed)

Engines 290

Hand Crews 54

Dozers 52

Summary: The Station Fire continues to burn within the Angeles National Forest and near surrounding foothill communities of La Canada-Flintridge, La Crescenta, Acton, Soledad Canyon, Pasadena and Glendale. The goals of the firefighters are to keep the fire west of Highway 39 and Angeles Crest Highway, east of Interstate 5, south of Highway 14, Pearblossom Highway, and Highway 138, and north of the foothill communities and the Angeles National Forest Boundary. Steep terrain, decadent old growth brush and hot dry weather are factors that drive fire activity. Firefighters are working to build fireline and protect structures within areas affected by the fire.

Evacuations:

North Side Mandatory

Chantry Flats: evacuations of the Chantry Flats area effective as of 10:00 am

Acton Area: There has been a mandatory evacuation of Soledad Canyon Rd. between Agua Dulce Canyon Rd. and Crown Valley Rd. There is a mandatory evacuation of the area bounded by Soledad Canyon Rd, Aliso Canyon Rd. and Angeles Forest Highway.

National Forest: Soledad Canyon Rd./Bootlegger Canyon Rd. Area AND Little Rock Recreation Area Mount Emma Rd. and Cheseboro Rd.

South Side Mandatory

National Forest: There has been mandatory evacuation of the area along Big Tujunga Canyon Rd. from Mount Gleason to Angeles Forest Highway.

There has been a mandatory evacuation along Little Tujunga Canyon Rd. north of the Little Tujunga Ranger Station and Gold Creek.

La Crescenta: Vicinity of Rosemont, La Crescenta, and Ramsdale AND north of Rockedell, Pineridge, Mountain Pine, and Markridge Rd.

La Canada Flintridge: There has been a mandatory evacuation of all streets east of Ocean View Blvd. and north of Los Amigos St. In addition, all streets north of Jessen Drive and Palm Drive have been evacuated as well. There has been a mandatory evacuation of all streets located west of Briggs Ave. and east of Pennsylvania Ave., in between Harmony Pl. and the foothills. There has been a mandatory evacuation of all streets north of Rockdell St. between Briggs Av. And Pine Glenn Rd.

Altadena: There has been a mandatory evacuation of all streets north of Loma Alta Dr., located between Lincoln Ave. and Lake Ave. In addition, all streets located in “The Meadows” have been evacuated as well. “The Meadows” consists of all streets located above Loma Alta Dr. and west of Lincoln Ave. to Aralia Rd.

Road Closures:

Red Rover Mine Rd. @ SR-14

Soledad Canyon Rd. @ Crown Valley Rd.

Escondido Rd.@ SR-14

Soledad Canyon Rd. @ SR-14 (exit only)

Agual Dulce Canyon Rd. @ SR-14

Placerita @ Sand Canyon Rd.

Big Pines @ SR-2

Aliso Canyon @ Soledad Canyon Rd.

Angeles Forest Highway @ Mt. Emma Rd.

Red Rover Mine Rd.@ Escondido Rd.

Aliso Canyon @ Ave Y-8

Little Tujunga @ Ranger Station

Open to Residents Only:

Effective (time)

Lake Blvd. to JPL and south of Cheyney Tr.

Evacuation Shelters: Located at La Canada High School; La Crescenta Valley High School and Golden Valley High School, Marie Kerr Park, Verdugo High School. Animal Shelters are located at Antelope Valley Fairgrounds, as well as the following special needs shelter. Pierce College (horses, donkeys and mules ONLY), Lancaster Animal Shelter and Agoura Animal Shelter are both accepting small animals.



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 Michael Dietrich

Current Situation

Total Personnel 2,575
Size 85,760 acres
Percent Contained 5%
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 Fir in the drainage bottoms. Fuels have not experienced any significant large fire activity in the past 40 years.

Fire Behavior

Fire behavior was extremely active with rapid rates of spread and flame lenghts up to 80 feet. All thresholds in place for determination of active fire behavior have been exceeded. Hot and dry with afternoon winds, especially over the upper slopes.

Significant Events

Mandatory Evacuations are in effect in many locations. The fire is threatening the Mount Lukens Communications Site, Mount Wilson Communications Facilities and Observatory and may reach these locations this burning period. Unified Command is in place.

Outlook

Planned Actions

Prepare and protect structures when and where necessary. Air operations will be heavy on the northwest perimeter.

Growth Potential

Extreme. The fire in the Acton area has spread down to the lower slopes adjacent to the road.

Terrain Difficulty

Extremely steep and inaccessible

Remarks

Angeles Crest Highway remains closed and is the primary access route for numerous private residences and the Mount Wilson Communication Facility and Observatory. Multiple evacuation centers have been established. The Red Flag warning will expire at 9:00 p.m. the evening.

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FBI seeks Sleeves Bandit

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A takeover specialist targeting banks in central California is being sought by the FBI. The Sleeves bandit has apparently worked as far south as La Crescenta and La Canada Flintridge, according to a press release issued Friday.

Here’s a larger gallery of photos:

Sleeves_Bandit_Photo_Album.pdf

Press release on the jump…

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