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Police Recap Week’s Critical Incidents, Including $10 Million Art Recovery

Published on Sunday, September 30, 2012 | 11:12 am
 

On September 26, at about 12:15 a.m., Pasadena Police officer responded to the report of a shooting in the area of McDonald Street and Mentone Avenue. On arrival, officers located a male Black adult who had been shot. Paramedics responded to the scene and provided immediate advance life support (ALS). The victim was transported to a local hospital where he later died as a result of the gunshot. Lieutenant Pete Hettema was the Incident Commander and managed the initial crime scene(s). Hettema was assisted by Sergeants Roger Roldan and Gregory Afsharian. Detective Lieutenant Tom Delgado, Sergeant Jesse Carrillo, Detectives William Broghamer, Ara Bzdigian, Cuong Pham, Jason Van Hecke, Grant Curry, and Keith Gomez also responded. Our investigation is ongoing as detectives continue to interview witnesses and review physical evidence. If you have any information about this case, please call the Pasadena Police Department at (626) 744-4241, or you can report your information through CRIME STOPPERS at 800-222-8477. The homicide was covered by the local media: http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2012/09/fatal-shooting-pasadena.html and http://articles.pasadenasun.com/2012-09-26/the626now/34108252_1_gunshot-wounds-pasadena-resident-pasadena-man.

On September 26, at about 7:30 a.m. several community members arrived at the Pasadena Police Department demanding to speak with the “the chief.” I was in Los Angeles when I was notified of the request. Pasadena Police Office Supervisor Beverly Bogar talked with the community members and determined that they had an urgent need to speak with someone at the executive level. Fortunately, Deputy Chief Darryl Qualls was in his office and met with the concerned community members.

The community members told Darryl that they had personal knowledge that some stolen art pieces were being stored in an auto body shop near Rosemead Avenue and Colorado Boulevard. Darryl determined the information was credible and quickly assembled a team of officers who responded to the body shop to investigate. Subsequent information revealed that the art had been stolen from a residence in Santa Monica last week. Once enough probable cause was developed, several Pasadena Police officers contacted about nine people who were at the auto body shop. The subjects were detained and the Santa Monica Police Department was notified. SMPD dispatched several detectives to the body shop and to the Pasadena Police Department where the community members (witnesses) were interviewed. SMPD detectives secured a search warrant and recovered several pieces of the stolen art from the auto body shop (the art was valued at 10 million dollars). One suspect was arrested at the body shop and another was arrested in San Gabriel. All the art was recovered.

This case underscores the value of law enforcement relationships with our community. The witnesses are courageous and trusted the Pasadena Police Department enough that they initiated contact. If their information had been discounted, the outcome could have been very different. The following Pasadena officers/detectives/employees were involved in this exceptional case: Deputy Chief Darryl Qualls, Commander Lisa Rosales, Office Supervisor Beverly Bogar, Pasadena Burglary Task Force (Dennis Beene, Alex Torres Jack Preston and Joaquin Gurrola), Sergeants William Grisafe, Dave Reavis, Art Chute, Teresa Rojas, Marcia Taglioretti, Rudy Lemos, and Chris Gutierrez, Detectives Robert Mercado, Kim Smith, Carolyn Gordon, David Duran, Andrea Perez, Alonzo Wilkins, James Deal, and Paul Granados. The story was covered by the local media: http://www.kfiam640.com/pages/NEWS.html?article=10452945; http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/sns-rt-us-usa-art-theftbre88r04w-20120927,0,6097104.story; and http://abcnews.go.com/Business/police-recover-10-million-stolen-art-bond-wizard/story?id=17347585.

On September 27 at about 7:30 a.m., Pasadena Police officers responded to the 500 block of Cypress Avenue regarding a death investigation. On arrival, officers talked with the landlord who told them he had discovered the victim unresponsive and called 9-1-1. The officers saw that the victim, a male White adult, had a syringe still in his arm. The Los Angeles County Coroner and Pasadena Police detectives responded to the scene. Our investigation is ongoing.

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