Touching Base: A Message from the Chief (09/01/13)

/assets/0/73/6442452101/6442452104/2d48c434-3d9e-4f00-b898-148a76ec79aa.jpgTouching Base:  A Message from the Chief
September 1, 2013



Dear Community Members and Department Personnel:  

Happy Labor Day!  The dog days of summer are upon us. In recent weeks, the weather has been extreme and it is anticipated temperatures will remain high for the next few days. Please ensure you remain hydrated and as cool as possible.  We need to be mindful of how vulnerable elders, children, and domestic animals can be when exposed to long periods of heat.    

For your Information: 

The Pasadena Police Department is proud to announce the launch of its Spanish CPA (Citizens Police Academy) class, which is scheduled for September 26 – October 17.  The program will be held on consecutive Thursdays and will include a Class Graduation.  The program is tailored to meet the needs of the Pasadena Latino Community and will cover common concerns and questions about how the police department serves the public.  If you know of potential applicants, please have them contact PS Hilda Jurado, Officer Ralph Ordonez, or Officer Cristian Allen at (626) 744-7659, or visit the Pasadena Police Department’s Webpage at:   cityofpasadena.net/Police.   

Our Community: 

In August, the Pasadena Police Department’s Community Services Section met with local community members to share vital information on Neighborhood Watch, home security, and general safety.  Members of the section deployed the Mobile Command Post Curbside Coffee & Chat into four neighborhoods. This month we visited with the residents of: the 900 block of Atchison Street; the 500 block of West Hammond Street; the 500 block of Summit Avenue, and the 3200 block of Florecita Drive.   

The curbside chats offer residents an opportunity to step out of their homes and gather at the curbside to meet with officers, police specialists, and our core of volunteers in an informal, collaborative setting. These brief meetings serve as an opportunity to share crime trends, offer solutions, and plan strategies to improve the quality of life in our fine city.  If you would like to arrange a visit to your neighborhood, business-park, or special event, or for more information on services, please call to make a reservation or email a Team Member:  Police Specialist Kathleen “Kitty” Johnson – Service Areas 1 & 4 (626)744-7650 /  kathleenjohnson@cityofpasadena.net; Police Specialist Hilda Jurado – Service Area 2 (626) 744-7659 / hjurado@cityofpasadena.net; Police Specialist Karla Kauhola – Service Areas 3 & 5 (626) 744-7657 / kkauhola@cityofpasadena.net; Officer Ralph Ordonez – Outreach Unit (626) 744-7651 / ralphordonez@cityofpasadena.net; or Officer Cristian Allen – Outreach Unit (626) 744-7656 / callen@cityofpasadena.net 

On August 23, Pasadena Police Lieutenant Vasken Gourdikian stopped by the Lake Avenue Church Chili Cook-Off and Car Show.  The event was coordinated by Lake Avenue Church Pastor Bill Mead and was very well attended. Over 100 classic cars rolled into the Lake Avenue Church parking lot and I understand the chili was exceptional this year.    

On August 26, more than 80 Pasadena community members, local leaders, and I attended the “Unity Day Concert,” which was held at the Walt Disney Concert Hall to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of  Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech.  As part of the celebration, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors honored 6 local community leaders with the “Spirit of the Dream Award.” Among the honorees were MYPD (Mentoring & Partnership for Youth Development) Founder and Executive Director, Tecumseh “Shack” Shackelford.  MYPD is a noon-time mentoring program for young people on the campus of John Muir High School.  Many young men completing the program have gone on to successful and productive lives after high school. The “Unity Day Concert” also featured the Inner City Youth Orchestra of Los Angeles (Photos @PPDChiefSanchez).   

On August 26, Pasadena Police Sergeant Beene, Officer Ordonez, CSO Jurado, and Lieutenant Clawson attended the Community Arms neighborhood meeting.  District 3 Field Representative Jana West, Regional Manager Mary Ann Oliver, and on-site manager, Eric Nelson also attended the community meeting. Approximately 30 community members attended.  Safety issues were among the topics discussed.  In that regard, Officers Alba and Magat have fostered a strong relationship with the Community Arms Security Team.   

On August 27, several Pasadena Police employees and I, along with several city department representatives, attended a briefing on the Monrovia Fires that occurred in April 2013.  The briefing was comprehensive and the audience received information on Incident Command, Social Media, and other vital components of an emergency operation.    

On August 28, several Pasadena Police employees and I attended the Ceremonial Bell Ringing ceremony to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington, which was held at City Hall.  The brief ceremony was initiated by Pasadena Vice Mayor Robinson. City Manager Beck, Assistant City Manager Julie Gutierrez, City Attorney Michele Bagneris, Fire Chief Wells, District 1 Field Representative Williams, and many others who attended the event (Photos @PPDChiefSanchez).  

On August 29, I spend time with several John Muir High School young men at the MYPD Noon-Time Mentoring Program.  Among other topics, we talked about a career in law enforcement (local, state, and federal).  Many of the young men said they would consider becoming a police officer in the future.  The program was founded by Tecumseh “Shack” Shackelford, who also serves as the Executive Director.   

Pasadena’s Finest: 

On August 19, the Pasadena Police Department’s Traffic Section completed an enforcement program focused on distracted drivers.  Motor officers issued more than 100 citations for distracted driving, which included cell phone usage and texting.  Officers paid particular attention to the areas around schools and commercial businesses.  Pasadena Police Lieutenant Pete Hettema commands the section.  The program was funded by California’s Office of Traffic Safety.    

On August 21, Pasadena Police Lieutenant J. Clawson earned his BA In Criminal Justice Management from Union Institute University.  He graduated with a 4.0 GPA, which is impressive under any circumstances.  What makes Lieutenant Clawson’s achievement extra special is that he completed the course work while maintaining his full-time law enforcement duties.   

On August 22, I received a phone call from a local community member commending Pasadena Police Motor Officer Watkins for his professionalism and exceptional service.   The caller said, “I really appreciate the radar enforcement Officer Watkins did at Arlington & Orange Grove Blvd…”   

On August 22, Pasadena Police HOPE Officer Lee located and arrested a male subject wanted for a parole violation and threats.  The suspect was well known to Pasadena Police officers and had recently made verbal threats toward at least one of our local elected officials.  Officer Lee observed the suspect in the area of Paseo Colorado and arrested him without incident.    

On August 26, I received an email stating that Pasadena Police Officer L. Mercado and her two sisters will participate in the 2013 Avon Walk for Breast Cancer.  The two day event will cover 39.3 miles starting in San Barbara.  Several Pasadena Police employees donated money to support Officer L. Mercado’s efforts.  The money will help support medical research in the effort to find a cure for breast cancer.   

On August 27, I received an email from Sunset Oaks Neighborhood Association commending Pasadena Police Lieutenants Jason Clawson and John Dewar for their presentations at a recent community meeting. The author wrote, “… Thanks for Lieutenant Dewar’s presence at our neighbor meeting and … Lieutenant Clawson has graciously called to establish communications with the neighborhood association.   

On August 27, I received an email from a community member who credits the police department for sobriety.  The author wrote, “… I wanted to thank the entire department! I have 9 years of being clean and sober. I was in the wrong several years ago in the throes of an addiction. I have maintained being clean and sober! With the help of God, and the love from all helpers it has been a journey of victory! Thank you to the police courts and prop 36 I got the help needed. Thank you police for your kindness and diligence! I will continue to make a living amends, as to stay clean and sober. God Bless…”   

Critical Incidents: 

On August 25, at about 11:58 a.m., Pasadena Police officers responded to the 1600 block of North Fair Oaks Avenue regarding a stabbing victim. On arrival, officers learned the victim (Male Hispanic, Fontana Resident) had been stabbed (4” laceration, left armpit) during a confrontation with a known suspect. The suspect (Male Hispanic Adult) fled prior to the arrival of the police.  During the field investigation, PPD officers developed evidence and when the suspect returned to the crime scene, he was arrested without further incident.  The suspect was booked at the Pasadena jail for attempted murder.   

On August 26 at about 8:40 p.m., Pasadena Police officers responded to a stabbing investigation in the 400 block of North Garfield Avenue.  On arrival, officers talked with the victim (Male Black Adult: moderate injuries) who said he was at the apartment complex to visit his sister.  The suspect (Male Hispanic Adult) invited the victim into his apartment so he could “preach” to him.  The victim declined the invitation and an argument ensued, which escalated into a physical altercation.  During the fight, the suspect produced a kitchen knife and stabbed the victim several times on the neck, chest, and arms. PPD arrested the suspect in his apartment without further incident and later booked him for attempted murder at the Pasadena jail.  The investigation was supervised by Sergeant V. Alaniz 

On August 26, police detectives assigned to the department’s Special Investigation Unit (SIU) and Federal Agents completed a complex narcotics investigation resulting in the arrest of two suspects without incident.  During the arrest and investigation, detectives recovered approximately 10 pounds of methamphetamine, $9,000 U.S. currency, and other illegal items. This case demonstrates the Pasadena Police Department’s collaborative relationship with other local, regional, and federal law enforcement agencies and removed dangerous narcotics from our community.   

On August 28 at about 3:10 p.m., Pasadena Police officers responded to a report of a suspicious package and material at 2 North Lake Avenue. On arrival, officers learned an employee received a package and upon opening it, began to experience skin irritation.   Although no one was evacuated, the area was cordoned off and Pasadena Fire Department, Burbank Fire Haz-Mat, and the FBI responded.  The material turned out capsicum.  Our investigation is ongoing. Lieutenant Delgado and Sergeant Villalovos supervised the incident.   

On August 28 at about 3:56 p.m., Pasadena Police Officer Klotz responded to the area of Fair Oaks Avenue and Arlington regarding a traffic collision.  Upon further investigation, Officer Klotz learned the driver (Male White, 60 years old) intentionally struck the victim (Male Hispanic, 24 years old) breaking his ankle. The suspect was arrested without incident and booked at the Pasadena jail for Assault with a Deadly Weapon.    

On August 29 at about 12:31 a.m., Pasadena Police Officer J. Calderon observed a suspicious vehicle and attempted to stop it.  The driver, a Female Asian, failed to yield and a pursuit was initiated.  The chase ended about 1 minute later when the suspect driver collided with the curb near Green Street and Holliston Avenue.  The driver was taken into custody without further incident and later booked at the Pasadena jail for DUI.   


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



Posted: 9/1/2013 01:35:00 PM
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