Touching Base: A Message from the Chief (10/21/12)

/assets/0/73/6442452101/6442452104/2d48c434-3d9e-4f00-b898-148a76ec79aa.jpgDear Community Members and Department Personnel: 

Save the Date: 

The Pasadena Community Gardens Conservancy announced that three new garden projects in the city will receive Community Gardening Awards at the Conservancy’s first annual Sustainable Sunday Supper, Can U Dig It?, which will be held on November 4.  The awardees are: 

  • John Muir High School’s Muir Ranch Community Supported Agriculture project 
  • Harambee Ministries’ Harambee Community Garden in Northwest Pasadena 
  • Pasadena Community Gardens’ community Garden in Southwest Pasadena 

For more information, please contact Pasadena Community Gardens Conservancy President and CEO, Eileen Read, at eileenwhiteread@hotmail.com, or phone (202) 641-0779.  

The Pasadena Youth Center will host their 2nd Annual Adelante Young Men Conference on November 10, from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. The conference will take place on the campus of Pasadena City College (PCC) and will feature Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF) President/General Counsel, Thomas A. Saenz, as the keynote speaker.  The conference features lectures, interactive workshops, career and academic planning, and much more.  For more information about the conference, please call (626) 798-1538, or visit http://pasadenayouthcenter.org/aym_conference/adelante_young_menStella R. Murga is the founder and Executive Director for the Pasadena Youth Center.  

Youth for Human Rights International, Pasadena High School Chapter, will host Education and Responsibility Human Rights Day Forum 2012, on December 8, 2012 at Louis Creveling Lounge, Pasadena City College. Youth for Human Rights International is dedicated to teaching youth about human rights, specifically the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and inspire them to become valuable advocates for tolerance and peace.  For more information on Youth for Human Rights International, please visit: http://www.youthforhumanrights.org. Tim Bowles is the Executive Director for Human Rights International and is accepting forum RSVPs at tbowles@tbowleslaw.com 

Our Community: 

On October 13, Debora K. Sanchez and I attended the 2012 Women at Work Gala, which was held at the Pasadena Senior Center.  The event was very well attended as we celebrated the achievements of several community leaders. The theme for this year’s gala was, “Trailblazing Women of the Wild West.”  As part of the program, several community members put on a dancing exhibition, which was entertaining and well received.  Line dancers included:  Mayor Bill Bogaard, Vice-Mayor Margaret McAustin, Cynthia Kurtz, Linda Wah, Glen Dawes, James Okazaki, Claire Covington, Miss Claire, and John McAustin. Honorees included Ada Gates, Jane Caughey, Kaiser Permanente, Margaret McAustin, Sally Bixby, Lilia Villarreal, Rollie Asprer, Keith Boyd, Virgil Esmerial, and Ed Lozano & Masood Rad.  

On October 14, Deborah and I attended “A Day at the Races” to benefit young women in foster care.  The event was very well attended by local community members and leaders.  Michaela Pereira served as Mistress of Ceremonies. Later, we stopped by the “Love Armenia” Concert to benefit Armenian Youth Groups, which was held at the Noor-Sofia Ballroom.  The event was well attended and Nat Nehdar coordinated our participation.  The audience listened to several talented musical and dance artists.  

On October 15, Deputy Chief Darryl Qualls, Commanders John Perez and Lisa Rosales, Lieutenants Phlunte Riddle and Tracy Ibarra, Administrator Gena Persons, Office Supervisor Beverly Bogar, Deborah K. Sanchez, Sergeant Ed Calatayud, and I attended the 10th Annual YWCA Women for Racial Justice Breakfast.  Beverly White served as Mistress of Ceremonies.  The keynote speaker was Dr. Dolores Huerta, President, Dolores Huerta Foundation & Co-Founder, United Farm Workers. There were a number of local, state, and federal elected officials in the audience. Tamika Farr is the YWCA Executive Director.  

On October 17, Deputy Chief Darryl Qualls, Commanders Lisa Rosales and Chris Russ, Lieutenants Rodney Wallace and Phlunte Riddle, Corporal Glenn Thompson, HOPE Officer William Shipman, and I attended Passageways’ Homeless Connection Day, which was held at the Salvation Army.  Nonprofit organizations provided health care assistance, counseling, and lunch.  Throughout the day, several members of the Pasadena Police Department stopped by the event to help in one way or another.  The event was sponsored by Pacific Clinics, the Salvation Army, Union Station Homeless Services, Wells Fargo, Kaiser Permanente, and Mijares Mexican Restaurant.  Pasadena Fire Department was on hand to BBQ burgers for the clients.  

On October 17, several members of the Pasadena Police Department attended the Swearing-in Ceremony of Pasadena Police Reserve Officer Pedro “Pete” Covarrubias.  The ceremony was held in the City Hall Council Chambers and City Manager Michael Beck, Transportation Director Fred Dock, and City PIO William Boyer attended the event. Pete’s family was present to witness his oath of office, which was given by City Clerk, Mark Jomsky.  

On October 18, Deputy Chief Darryl Qualls, Lieutenant Phlunte Riddle and I attended the 2012 Wells Fargo Community Support Breakfast.  Wells Fargo District Manager, David DiCrstofaro, opened the program with a few brief remarks.  Wells Fargo Executive, Jonathan Weedman, provided a recap of the bank’s community involvement.  About 62 nonprofit organizations received grants from Wells Fargo, including the Pasadena Police Department’s PAL program.  The Pasadena Police Department was introduced by Wells Fargo Manager, Diana Nesheiwat. Local, state, and federal elected officials also participated in this exceptional community event.  

On October 18, Commander John Perez, Lieutenants Pete Hettema and Phlunte Riddle, and I attended the El Centro de Accion Social Annual Gala, which was held at the Pasadena Westin Hotel.  The event was well attended and Co-Founder and Director of the Advancement Project Molly Munger, served as Mistress of Ceremonies.  Dr. Terrence Roberts was the keynote speaker and several community members were honored for their leadership. Honorees included:  Congressman Adam Schiff, Manuel Torres-Contreras, Cynthia Kurtz, Bob Baderian, and Monica Lozano. There were a number of local, state, and federal elected officials attending the gala. Randy Ertll serves as the Executive Director for El Centro. For more information about El Centro’s programs and outreach efforts, please visit:  www.elcentropasadena.org. 

On October 19, Pasadena Unified School District Board Member, Ramon Miramontes, and I met with John Muir High School Freshman students to discuss career choices, personal safety, educational opportunities, and other related topics.  The students were well behaved and asked some great follow-up questions. Special thanks to JMHS Principal, Timothy Sippel, for coordinating our participation.  

Pasadena’s Finest: 

On March 3, 2010, Pasadena Police officers responded to the area of Fair Oaks Avenue and Tremont Street regarding a shooting.  On arrival, officers discovered a Male Hispanic (minor) who had been shot.  He later died as a result of his wounds. Detective Grant Curry was assigned the case and was assisted by Keith Gomez, William Broghamer, Ara Bzdigian, Jason Van Hecke, and Cuong Pham.  After a comprehensive investigation, a suspect was identified and arrested for murder.  After Grant confronted him with overwhelming physical evidence, the suspect admitted to shooting and killing the victim. On October 9, the suspect agreed to a plea and received 38 years in state prison.  This case underscores the skills, dedication, and professionalism of the detectives assigned to the Homicide Unit.  The Unit is under the command of Lieutenant Tracey Ibarra, and is supervised by Sergeant Ernesto Devis.  

On October 16, Pasadena Police Officer Veronica Burris attended a financial literacy workshop, hosted by the YWCA.  The workshop featured several subject matter experts who provided informative tips on financial security, fund management, and associated topics.  Tamika Farr serves as the Executive Director for the YWCA. Tamika sent me an email saying, “Officer Burris was just what we needed…”  

On October 18, I received an email from Pasadena Water and Power General Manager, Phyllis Currie, commending the Pasadena Police Department for their assistance during a power outage that shutdown several traffic lights.  Pasadena Police Officer and Volunteer Coordinator, Nicole Bazzo, helped coordinate a core of volunteers who responded to assist with traffic control.  Volunteers included: Keith Chow, Oren Gray, David Kilgore, Shar Stafford, and Vic Baliozian.  

On October 19, the Pasadena Police Athletics Association (PPAA) hosted their Annual Golf Tournament to benefit the Pasadena Police Department’s PAL (Police Activities League) program.  Assistant City Manager Steve Mermell was among the many golfers participating in the tournament and KCAL-9 News Reporter, Joy Benedict, was the Mistress of Ceremonies. Special thanks to PPAA Board President, Tracey Ibarra, John Perez, and the many Pasadena Police employees and volunteers who assisted with the tournament.  The proceeds raised from the event help support the PAL, which is a comprehensive program focused on education, athletics, and artistic activities to develop strong young people in our community. The local media covered the tournament: http://losangeles.cbslocal.com/2012/10/08/charity-golf-tournament-benefits-youth-crime-prevention-program 

On October 19, the Pasadena Police Department was recognized for its role in the Great Shake Out Exercise. At the prescribed hour, emergency managers encouraged police personnel to leave the building.  We collected nearby and once employees were accounted for, returned to our normal duties.  Personnel assigned to the department’s heliport also participated in the emergency evacuation exercise.  Lieutenants Kelly Evans, Bruce George, Mike Ingram, Administrator Wendy Petry, Office Supervisor Beverly Bogar, Sergeant Chris Gutierrez, Officer Andrea Perez, and Sergeant Marcia Taglioretti, assisted and helped coordinate the department’s participation.   

Critical Incidents: 

On October 11, from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., Special Enforcement Section (SES) Officers conducted a quality of life / robbery suppression program in the areas of Fair Oaks Avenue and Washington Boulevard; the area surrounding PCC; the Orange Grove corridor; and North Lake Avenue.  The program was initiated in part on community concerns. SES officers arrested 11 suspects, for mostly misdemeanor violations.   

On October 13 at about 4:48 p.m., Pasadena Police officers responded to the area of Green Street and Orange Grove Boulevard regarding a female lying near her vehicle.  On arrival, officers discovered an unconscious female adult.  Paramedics responded; however, they could not revive the victim and she was pronounced dead at the scene.  The passenger in the victim’s vehicle told PPD officers that the female had a long term medical issue and was feeling ill while driving.  The victim safely stopped her car, exited, and collapsed. There were no signs of foul play and the Los Angeles Coroner’s Office responded for the deceased.  

On October 13 at about 11:30 p.m., an adult female was sexually assaulted after leaving a restaurant / bar in the area of Colorado Boulevard and Holly Street.  The victim was walking alone when she was approached from behind by the suspect and forcibly taken to Legge Alley, where the assault occurred.  The suspect then fled the alley on foot.  He is described as a Male Hispanic, 30–40s, 5’8,” medium build and wearing dark clothing.  Pasadena Police detectives responded to the scene and the investigation is ongoing. If you have any information about this incident, please contact Detective Schuyler Sandeen at ssandeen@citofpasadena.net, or (626)744-7099.  You can also call the Pasadena Police Department at (626)744-4241, or report your information anonymously through CRIME STOPPERS (800) 222-8477.   

On October 16 at about 3:43 p.m., Pasadena Police officers responded to the 900 block of Summit Avenue regarding an assault in progress.  On arrival, officers quickly detained three suspects standing on Summit Avenue.  A total of five people were assaulted during the incident. The suspects were ultimately booked at the Pasadena jail for Assault with a Deadly Weapon (245 PC).  Sergeant John Luna was the on-scene supervisor.  

On October 17 at about 6:00 p.m., Pasadena Police detectives assigned to the Pacific Southwest Regional Fugitive Task Force (PSWRFTF) assisted Inglewood Police officers and Los Angeles County Sherriff’s Homicide detectives in the apprehension of two Inglewood gang members.  They were wanted for the attempted murder of two teenagers in Los Angeles and the attempted murder of an Inglewood Police Officer.  The PSWRFTF detectives developed information about the location of the suspects in the City of Hawthorne.  A traffic stop was initiated, and the suspects were arrested without incident.  During the search of the suspects’ residences, detectives recovered a loaded .357 revolver, ammunition, two silencers, and high-capacity .233 magazines.  The suspects were handed off to the Inglewood Police Department.  Pasadena Police Sergeant Victor Alaniz supervises the PSRFTF.   

On October 18 at about 10:48 p.m., Pasadena Police Volunteers were patrolling the area of Victory Park in a marked unit.  As the volunteers drove through the parking lot, a vehicle approached them head-on, driving against the traffic pattern.  As the vehicle approached, it sped up and veered directly toward their unit, turning at the last moment and passing within inches of the police car.  The suspect’s vehicle continued at a high rate of speed out of the parking lot, and was last seen eastbound on Paloma Street. Fortunately, no one was injured in the incident.  If you witnessed this incident, or have information about the driver of the suspect car, please call the Pasadena Police Department at 626-744-4241.  You can also report your information anonymously through CRIME STOPPERS (800-222-8477). 

On October 18, Pasadena Police Special Enforcement officers and the Los Angeles County Probation Department conducted a parole and probation compliance enforcement program in the city.  Pasadena Police Lieutenant John Dewar managed the enforcement effort and Sergeants Bobby Crees and Jason Clawson supervised the line officers. Approximately eight locations were checked, resulting in one felony and three misdemeanor arrests.  You may recall that in 2010, the United State Supreme Court mandated the early release of approximately 33,000 prisoners throughout California. In 2011, about 8,900 prisoners were released and the same number of incarcerated subjects are scheduled for release during the next 12 months.   

On October 19, at about 10:15 a.m., Pasadena Police officers assigned to the Special Enforcement Section (SES) conducted an enforcement stop for a traffic violation in the 500 block of North Marengo Avenue.  Through their investigation, the officers discovered illegal drugs in the vehicle.  As the officers continued their investigation, a passenger exited the vehicle.  The officers immediately contacted the passenger and discovered he was in possession of a loaded handgun.  The suspect was arrested without incident and booked at the Pasadena jail.  


Phillip L. Sanchez
Chief of Police
Pasadena Police Department
207 N. Garfield Avenue
Pasadena, CA 91101
(626) 744-4545
Mission First, People Always


Posted: 10/21/2012 11:40:00 AM
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