Touching Base: A Message from the Chief
May 13, 2012
Dear Community Members and
Happy Mother’s Day!
The majority of countries that
celebrate Mother’s Day do so on the second Sunday of May. On this day, it
is common for Mothers to be lavished with presents, special attention from
their families, friends, and loved ones. The highly traditional practice
of honoring of Motherhood is rooted in antiquity, and past rites typically had
strong symbolic and spiritual overtones; societies tended to celebrate
Goddesses and symbols rather than actual Mothers. Only in the past few
centuries did celebrations of Motherhood develop a decidedly human focus.
Regardless of how you celebrate Mother’s Day, please take time to honor your
mother (Source: Mother Day Central).
Save the Date:
Pasadena Police and Fire Departments are
hosting their first annual Police and Fire Memorial Service, to
honor the brave Pasadena men and women who have made the ultimate sacrifice in
the performance of their duties. The event will be held on May 15,
from 6:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. in front of City Hall (Garfield Avenue side) and
the public is welcome. The month of May is the time of year
when public safety departments remember their fallen first responders. To
date, six Pasadena police officers and seven Pasadena firefighters have lost
their lives protecting our community. The solemn ceremony will include
the presentation of colors, the national anthem, a 21-gun salute, ringing of
the bell, taps, and a fly-over. Please consider attending this special
commemorative ceremony so that together, as a community, we can honor
Pasadena’s Finest. For more information, please contact Pasadena Police
Sergeant Michael Bugh at MBugh@cityofpasadena.net or 626-744-3871 (Source:
Sergeant Michael Bugh).
2012 NOBLE Region VI Conference is
scheduled for May 16 – 18 at the Pasadena Convention Center.
Please consider attending this fun and educational training experience, which
will bring together law enforcement professionals from across the Western
United States. Cutting edge ideas for reducing crime and ensuring
fairness and equity in the judicial system will be the highlight of the
event. For more information, please contact MHP Events co-owner Jill
Hawkins at (626) 791-1225 (Source: SGV NOBLE).
The Pasadena Police Foundation invites you to an all-day fundraiser at El Portal
Restaurant on May 23. You can enjoy wonderful Yucatan / Mexican
cuisine in this landmark Pasadena restaurant while supporting the Pasadena
Police Foundation (PPF). Fifteen percent (15%) of all sales will be
donated to PPF. El Portal Restaurant is located at 695 East Green
Street. For more information, please contact PPF Board Member Sandra
Greenstein at Greenstein@charter.net
or landline at 626-577-5842 (Source: Sandra Greenstein).
The Pasadena Police Department,
Air Operations Section will host its
annual Open House on June 2, from 10:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. The event will
take place at Benedict Heliport and will feature the Pasadena Police
helicopters and a motorcycle skills demonstration. The event is free to the
public and food and beverages will be served. For more information,
please contact Lieutenant Michael Ingram at MIngram@cityofpasadena.net.
(Source: Lieutenant Michael Ingram).
The Pasadena Police Classic Car
Show is scheduled for June 17, 10:00
a.m. – 3:00 p.m., at the Paseo Colorado, 300 East Green Street.
The event is supported by the Pasadena Lions Club and will include awards in
several categories, including: Police Chief’s Favorite, Paseo’s Favorite,
People’s choice, Best in show, and many others. For more information
about the Pasadena Police Classic Car Show, please contact Pasadena Police
Sergeant Michael Bugh at MBugh@cityofpasadena.net or 626 744-3871 (Source:
Sergeant Michael Bugh).
On May 3, Deputy Chief Darryl Qualls, Commanders John
Perez, Lisa Rosales, and Chris Russ, Lieutenants Randell
Taylor, Phlunte Riddle and Rodney Wallace, Administrator Gene
Persons, Office Supervisor Beverly Bogar and I attended the
2012 Pasadena Mayor’s Prayer Breakfast. Preston Howard was the Master of Ceremonies
and Mayor Bogaard provided opening remarks. Pasadena Health
Director, Dr. Eric Walsh, was the keynote speaker. His topic was “The
Prescription for a Healthy City.” In addition to the City’s Executive
Staff, there were a number of local, state, and federal elected officials
and/or their representatives attending the event.
On May 5, Pasadena Police Lieutenant Phlunte Riddle, Deborah
K. Sanchez, and I attended the 9th Annual “A Kentucky Derby”
Awards Dinner at the Blinn House, Women City Club. The Dr. Robert
Winter Award was presented to John Merritt and Dr. Robert P. Kneisel, for
their efforts to preserving many of Pasadena’s wonderful historical
homes. A special thanks to WCC President Maria Schweitzer,
for including the Pasadena Police Department in this exceptional community
event, which was also attended by Mayor Bill Bogaard.
On May 5, Lieutenant Phlunte Riddle, Deborah K.
Sanchez, and I attended a fund raiser for Hamilton Elementary School, which
was also attended by PUSD Superintendent Jon Gundry. Special
thanks to Hamilton Elementary School Event Coordinator Kayleen
Maya-Aviles for including the Pasadena Police Department.
On May 7, Sergeant John Luna participated in a fund raiser
at California Pizza Kitchen, Pasadena. The funds raised supported
Neighbors Acting Together Helping All (NATHA). John serves as
a NATHA Board Member.
On May 8, Commander Lisa Rosales attended the clergy
Community Coalition monthly meeting, which was held at Fuller Theological
Seminary. Lisa provided a public safety overview and co-presented (with
Human Services and Recreation Director Mercy Santoro) information on the
exciting new summer program, Parks after Dark.
On May 9, Deputy Chief Darryl Qualls and Lieutenants
Pete Hettema and Phlunte Riddle attended a Welcome Ceremony
for Tournament of Roses Executive Director, William Flinn. Elected officials
and city staff included: Vice-Mayor Margaret McAustin, Council Member Victor
Gordo, City Manager Michael Beck, Assistant City Manager Steve
Mermell, and Transportation Director Fred Dock. Also in
attendance were John McAustin and Clair Bogaard.
On May 11, I attended the Mental Health Day, which was held at
the Senior Center. Councilmember Chris Holden opened the event with a few
brief remarks and presented the coordinator with a City Council Proclamation.
Pasadena Police Officer Victor Cass was recognized for his
long-time service assisting mental ill people in our community.
On May 11, Lieutenant Phlunte Riddle, Deborah K.
Sanchez, and I attended the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority’s 24th
Annual Scholarship Luncheon, which was held at the Glendale Hilton. This
year the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority honored Pasadena Community Leader Lena
Kenney with the 2012 Mother of the Year Award. I have come to know
Lena sine my arrival in Pasadena and she is a valued community partner and
On May 11, Lieutenant Phlunte Riddle, Office Supervisor Beverly Bogar
and I attended the Women at Work “Afternoon High Tea” and Fashion Show.
The event was held at Noor-Sofia Ballroom and was very well attended.
Women at Work Board of Directors President Marsha Rood opened the event
with a few remarks. Women at Work Executive Director Robin McCarthy
remarked on value of women in the work force. The fashion show was
presented by TRUU-Designs.
On April24, I received a letter from Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee
Baca commending the Pasadena Police Department for assisting with a
barricaded suspect incident on Lake Avenue, in Altadena. The letter
states, “Your officers were a vital part of the operations and assisted
Altadena Sheriff’s personnel in providing a tactical containment of the area until
our Special Enforcement Bureau arrived.” Sheriff Baca concluded the
letter by saying he was grateful for the partnership between the Pasadena
Police Department and the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
On May 2, Pasadena Police Detectives William Broghamer, Keith
Gomez, Ara Bzdigian, Jason Van Heck, Carolyn Gordon, David
Duran, Sergeant Ernesto Devis, and Lieutenant Tracey Ibarra
apprehended a suspect involved in an attempted murder that occurred on March 27th
in the 1600 block of Fair Oaks Avenue. The arrest occurred after a
comprehensive investigation and service of a search warrant.
On May 3, the Pasadena Police Department Detective Section conducted
a training class for the Alhambra Police Department on the implementation of a
volunteer financial crimes investigations unit. Detective Joe Allard,
Detective Paul Granados, and Pasadena Police Volunteers Liz Diotta
and Larry John, lectured on investigative techniques and other necessary
material. Identify theft is still considered the “fastest-growing crime
On May 5, Members from Pasadena Police Department’s Explorer Post
participated in the 1st Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department
Competition. The event was hosted by the Sheriff’s Department North
County Region and was attended by 13 explore teams. The Pasadena
Police Explorers performed very well securing 1st and 3rd
Place awards. The following Explorer Advisors helped prepare the Explorer
Cadets for the competition: Corporal Dustin Gomez, PSS Michelle
White, Officers Anthony Riley, Sheri Schwab, and Anthony
On May 8, I received a letter from Dr. I. Juliana Christy, from
the California Institute of Technology, commending Pasadena Police Officer Darin Craddolph
for his professionalism while assisting with a non-emergency incident at the
college. Dr. Christy said Darin’s deportment and communication skills
On May 8, Pasadena Police Park Safety Specialists Nick Ortiz, Tony
Ambroze, Maria Huerta, Police Specialists Laura Morris, and
Volunteer Lou Oronoz, conducted a Park Watch in the area of the Lower
Arroyo/Casting Ponds. The group handed out literature to approximately
400 joggers, walkers, and horse-back riders. The Pasadena Police
Reserve Equestrian Unit also assisted in the effort to education our
community about appropriate use of our open spaces.
On May 9, I learned that Pasadena Police Officer Domino Scott
received her Master’s Degree in Clinical Psychology. She completed the 2
year program in about 18 months. Her course work included a professional
thesis project, 24 hours of personal psychotherapy, and 150 clinical
hours. The course work was completed on her personal time. Domino is
currently assigned to the Field Operations Division.
On May 9, I learned that Pasadena Police Officer Edgar Sanchez
received his B.A. Degree in Sociology: Law and Society. Edgar
maintained a 3.46 GPA while working full time as a Pasadena Police
officer. Additionally, Edgar was accepted into a Master’s Program at California
State University, Northridge (CSUN). He is currently assigned to the
department’s Special Enforcement Section (SES).
On April 24, a female adult walked into the Pasadena Police Department
and reported that she had been sexually assaulted. The victim said she
met the suspect on April 22 while walking her dog. The suspect
befriended the victim, securing her personal contact information. At a later
date, the suspect met the victim at her residence and assaulted her. The
case was assigned to Corporal Monica Cuellar, who immediately initiated
a comprehensive investigation. Monica eventually secured several felony filings
from the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office, charging the suspect
with residential burglary and sexual battery. The suspect was arrested and on
March 1st, pled guilty to the charges.
On May 1 at about 2:45 p.m. the Pasadena Police Department received a call regarding
an 88 year old female who had walked away from her residence. According
to family members, the female victim suffers from Alzheimer’s Disease.
Several PPD officers were dispatched to look for the victim.
Additionally, the Pasadena Police Department notified adjacent police agencies
and local area hospitals. Council Member Steve Madison was
driving home at about 5:00 p.m., and observed a woman matching the description
of the missing adult walking on San Rafael Avenue. Steve called the
Pasadena Police Department and stopped to assist the victim. He remained
with the victim and talked with her (the victim is Spanish speaking; however,
Steve managed to effectively communicate with her) until the police
arrived. Steve noted that although the victim had been walking for
several hours, she did not appear to be distressed.
On May 5, from 8:00 p.m. to
2:00 a.m. Pasadena Police Department’s
Traffic Section conducted a DUI Saturation program throughout the city.
Fifty-nine (59) vehicles were stopped for suspected DUI driving, which resulted
in thirteen (13) Field Sobriety Test and five (5) DUI arrests. The following
personnel were involved in the DUI enforcement effort:
Lieutenant Randell Taylor, Sergeant Vasken Gourdikian, Officers Hsu,
Watkins, Blanchard, Blumenthal, Karg, Bozarth, and Marquez.
On May 7 at about 2:06 a.m. Pasadena Police Officers Robert Christian and Brian Petrella
were conducting an investigation at a hotel in the 2800 block of East
Colorado Boulevard. Robert and Brian developed sufficient probable cause
and contacted several people who were staying in one of the hotel rooms. The
officers determined that one of the occupants was on active parole, which led
to a search. Robert and Brian subsequently found a stolen handgun,
methamphetamine, various burglary tools, numerous credit cards, a credit card
reader, and a credit embossing machine. Several suspects were arrested
and booked at the Pasadena jail.
On May 7, at about 5:49 p.m. Pasadena Police officers were conducting an investigation
at the Pasadena Residential Care Center (1400 block of North Garfield Avenue)
when they were advised of a patient not breathing. The officers quickly
responded to the patient’s room and called the paramedics. Despite the medical
efforts of the paramedics, the patient could not be revived. While
investigating the cause of death, another patient approached the officers and
admitted to killing the victim. Pasadena Detectives responded to the
scene and the suspect was arrested. The suspect was transported to the
Pasadena jail and booked for murder. On May 10, the Los Angeles
County District Attorney’s office filed murder charges against the suspect, who
remains in custody on $1,000,000 bail. The local media reported the
On May 9, California Parole Agent Gory contacted the Pasadena
Police Fugitive Apprehension Unit (FAU) regarding three registered sex
offenders who were out of compliance. Upon receiving the suspect
information, FAU task force officers immediately began their
investigation. Subsequently, FAU officers located and arrested the
suspects without incident at three different locations.
On May 9, the Pasadena Police officers, in conjunction with
the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), the United States Secret
Service, and the California Department of Alcohol Beverage Control (ABC),
served search warrants in the cities of Pasadena, Burbank, and Glendale,
following a comprehensive welfare fraud investigation. The joint investigation
had been on-going since 2011, after Pasadena Police received complaints about
possible welfare fraud at Sunshine Liquor, 3360 East Colorado Boulevard, in
Pasadena). Three suspects were arrested without incident and booked at the
Pasadena jail for Conspiracy to Commit Welfare Fraud. The Los Angeles
County District Attorney’s Welfare Fraud Unit field charges against the
suspects. The arrest was covered by the local media: http://www.pasadenasun.com/the626now/tn-pas-0509-welfare-fraud,0,1743238.story.
Until Next Week,
Phillip L. Sanchez
Chief of Police
Pasadena Police Department
207 N. Garfield Avenue
Pasadena, CA 91101
Mission First, People Always