Touching Base: A Message from the Chief
February 9, 2014
Dear Community Members & Department Personnel:
For your Information:
The Pasadena Police Department is planning to open
the police officer application process on or about February 13, 2104.
Prior to the opening, interested people should use the following link (http://agency.governmentjobs.com/pasadena/default.cfm?action=openjobrequest)
to access the City of Pasadena Human Resources Department “Job Interest Cards” webpage
and check the law enforcement and public safety boxes. Interested people
will receive an email from the city announcing the next steps.
Pasadena Police Department’s Mobile Command Post,
Curbside Coffee & Chat, is on the move in 2014. The police
department has received several requests for the mobile command post from
neighborhood watch groups and other local stakeholders. The mobile command post
is being utilized as a highly visible platform to engage our community members.
If you would like the Mobile Command Post Curbside Coffee & Chat to visit
your neighborhood, please call Officer Ralph Ordonez at (626) 744-7651, or
The Pasadena Police Department offers home &
vehicle burglary crime prevention tips. Burglary victims often feel
vulnerable and violated when their personal space has been invaded. Records
show that home burglaries often occur during the day while residents are away
from their dwelling. While residential burglaries seem random, predators
usually choose their targets. Unoccupied homes with easy or concealed
access and quick escape routes are targeted. If you See Something, Say
Something. Reporting suspicious activity when you first learn of it gives
police officers a greater chance of disrupting criminal activity.
Together we can impact crime and make it a safer place for all who live in,
work, or visit Pasadena. For more information, please visit the police
department’s webpage at http://www.ci.pasadena.ca.us/Police.
On February 15, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.,
our community will celebrate the 32nd Annual Black History Parade
and Festival. The parade is one of the biggest and longest-running Black
History parades in California. The festive celebration is free and fun
for the entire family. This year’s theme is “Black History: A
Legacy of the Present and Our Future.” The 2014 parade and festival are
sponsored by Wells Fargo Bank and Miller Coors. Media sponsors include:
Pasadena Journal; Beacon Media Inc., publisher of the Pasadena Independent and
On March 1, the West Pasadena Little League will
host Opening Day at Robinson Park, 1081 North Fair Oaks Avenue. The celebration
starts at 8:00 a.m. with a Pancake Breakfast (pancakes, sausage, juice or
coffee, $5.00) and the program at 10:00 a.m. For tickets, please call: (626)
235-0761, or (626) 484-648. I hope to see you there – it is a great cause in
support of our local youth.
On February 1, Pasadena Police Lieutenant Cheryl Moody and
Administrator Gena Persons attended the Association of Black Law
Enforcement Executives Black History Month Celebration, which was held at the
Renaissance, Los Angeles. The Keynote speaker was Areva D. Martin, Esq.,
an award-wining attorney, children’s rights advocate, and author. I
understand from Cheryl the event was well attended and Mr. Martin gave an
excellent presentation. Los Angeles Council Member Bernard Parks,
Riverside Police Chief Sergio Diaz, LAX Police Chief Patrick Gannon, and
USC Department of Public Safety Chief John Thomas also attended.
On February 1, Deborah Kay and I attended Bill
Leishman Celebration of Life, which was held at the University Club of
Pasadena. The celebration was packed with family, friends, Rotarians,
Tournament of Roses Representatives, a number of Pasadena Police Foundation
Board Members, and local leaders. There were several speakers who all
underscored Bill’s talents, dedication, and “love of Pasadena” he demonstrated
over the years. Among many accomplishments, Bill was a founding member of the
Pasadena Police Foundation. Bill will be missed by all.
On February 1, Deputy Chief Qualls, Lieutenants Tracey
Ibarra, Cheryl Moody, Ed Calatayud, Vasken Gourdikian, Phlunte Riddle (PPD
ret.), Office Supervisor Beverly Bogar, and I attended the Black
History Parade & Festival’s Red, Black & Green Honors Celebration. The
event was held at the Hilton Pasadena and was very well attended. Vice
Mayor Jacque Robinson, Councilman Terry Tornek, and Councilman John
Kennedy were among the elected officials at the celebration. 2014
Black History Parade Honorees included: The Black Male Forum, Georgia
Holloway, Lola Osborne, City of Pasadena Youth Ambassador Program, Ralph Poole
(in memoriam), Mack Robinson (in memoriam), and Jordan Tagnes. This
year’s community Grand Marshalls are NAACP Pasadena Branch President Gary
Moody and Businesswoman Shirlette Butler-Flder (Photos
February 4, 23 Beijing China High School students visited the Pasadena
Police Department as part of an education tour to the United States, hosted by
Pasadena High School. The students were very engaging and had a strong
command of the English language. They were accompanied by PHS Principal
Gilbert Barraza and his staff. Pasadena Police Sergeants Bobby Lomeli
and John Luna, Officers Louie Luevano, Richard Vindiola, Sal Ramos, Roxanne
Haines, and Police Specialist Hilda Jurado provided police building
tours for the students. They visited the Communication Center, the Jail,
and other major areas (Photos @PPDChiefSanchez).
On February 5, Pasadena Police Lieutenants John Dewar and
Pete Hettema attended a special meeting of the San Rafael Neighborhood
Association (SRNA) concerning the closure of the La Loma Bridge for
retrofitting. At the meeting, Lieutenant Hettema represented the police
department on a panel along with personnel from the Department of
Transportation, Fire, and Public Works to answer residents’ questions following
an update from Project Manager Steve Walker. The bridge is scheduled
to be closed for eighteen months during the construction and the residents are
concerned about emergency access and traffic impacts in their neighborhoods.
Stan Clark moderated the well-attended meeting for the SRNA.
On January 31, I received a copy of an email from a
community member commending Pasadena Police Officer Ralph Ordonez and
his “teammates” (Park Safety Officers Nick Ortiz and Michelle
White, Sergeant Max Dahlstein, Officers Steve Thurston and Irvin Myles,
PS Hilda Jurado) for hosting the Curbside Coffee & Chat at Singer
Park. The author wrote, “…It was very informative meeting and enjoyed by
all who attended from our neighborhood and area. Your continuous support in
striving to maintain Pasadena as a safe and beautiful place in which to live is
sincerely appreciated….” (Photos @PPDChiefSanchez).
On February 5, Pasadena Police Officer Jorge Salazar
was hired by the police department. He participated in a badge-pinning
ceremony, which was held in the City Council Chambers in front of family,
friends, and police employees. City Clerk Mark Jomsky issued the
oath of office. Mayor Bogaard and Assistant City Manager Steve Mermell
were present. Officer Salazar biography states: “… Jorge Salazar grew up in
Baldwin Park and graduated from Bishop Amat High School. He earned an
Associate of Arts Degree in Administration of Justice from East Los Angeles
College and recently completed his course work for his Bachelor’s Degree in
Administration of Justice from California State University, Los Angeles. He
enjoys playing soccer, football and basketball. Prior to being hired by the
Pasadena Police Department, Jorge worked as a Public Safety Officer for the
University of Southern California….” (Photos @PPDChiefSanchez).
On January 31, I received information regarding a
sexual assault on a minor. Pasadena Police Detective Cuellar received
information from the victim’s mother that a Male Subject (Pasadena Resident, 24
years old) had befriended her daughter (Female Hispanic, 14 years old). The
suspect and the victim had met online at “OMEGLE” and later agreed to meet.
On February 1, I received an email from a citizen
commending Pasadena Police Officers Matt Morgan and Tim Mossman
for their assistance. The author wrote that she was disoriented and confused
when she called the police department asking for assistance. Matt and Tim
arrived and called for the Pasadena Fire Department (the author was in need of
medical assistance). The author was subsequently transported to a local
hospital where she received help.
On January 30, at about 1:29:00
p.m., a Pasadena Police Officer responded
to the 900 block of South Marengo Avenue regarding a domestic dispute. On
arrival, the uniformed officer attempted to contact the residents by knocking
on the front door. Without warning, a male inside the dwelling pointed a
handgun (later determined to be loaded) at the officer through a window.
The officer quickly retreated to a safe location and requested
assistance. When the other units arrived, they ordered the suspect (Male
White, 43 years old, Pasadena Resident) to surrender. The suspect complied with
the orders and was arrested without incident. The suspect was later booked at
the Pasadena jail.
The preliminary investigation
revealed that the suspect pointed a loaded semi-automatic pistol at the
officer. The firearm was recovered near the front door of the dwelling and
investigating officers observed several other firearms in the house. A search
warrant was subsequently secured and officers recovered $21,000 in US
Currency, 416 grams of marijuana, 29 handguns, 16 rifles (to include 3 on the
banned assault rifle list), 5 shotguns, 1 multi-launcher with various tear
gas/anti-personnel rounds, numerous assault rifle receivers and high capacity
magazines, 1000s of rounds of ammunition, several tracer rounds, and numerous
canisters of explosive target compound. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco,
& Firearms (ATF) was also contacted and assisted with this investigation.
The evidence and weapons were booked at the Pasadena Police Property
Room. Not only did the officer demonstrate tremendous restraint , good
judgment and tactics when the suspect pointed a loaded firearm at him – the
seizure underscores the types of firearms that can find their way into our
community. This case highlights the challenges facing Pasadena Police
Officers as they go about their daily duties to protect and safeguard Pasadena.
I am including a few photos of the weapons PPD officers seized during this
On January 30, at around
midnight, Pasadena Police officers
received information that a Male White subject was maintaining a marijuana farm
at his residence, located in the 200 block of Chester Avenue. Special
Enforcement Officers (SES) responded to the area and detected a strong
order of marijuana emitting from the dwelling. The officers developed further
probable cause and applied for a search warrant. Based on the totality of
the investigation, a superior court judge authorized the warrant. The warrant
was served and SES officers recovered approximately 66 marijuana plants in
various stages of growth, as well as equipment used to cultivate weed. The
suspect was arrested without incident and booked at the Pasadena Police jail.
The investigation was supervised by Pasadena Police Sergeant Aguilar.
On January 31, at about 10:50
p.m., Pasadena Police officers assigned
to the Special Enforcement Section (SES) responded to Community Arms
regarding a fight. As the officers were approaching a group (the source
of the fight call) they observed a Male Black (active gang member) running way
holding his waistband. Officers ordered the male to stop; however he
failed to comply. SES officers chased after the suspect, who tossed a loaded
semi-automatic pistol outfitted with a 30-round magazine. The suspect was
detained and arrested without further incident. The pistol was recovered
and the suspect was later booked at the Pasadena Police Department Jail.
On January 31, Pasadena Police
Detective Christian received information
that a female suspect was selling methamphetamine from a residence located in
the 100 block of Rosemead Boulevard in Pasadena. Detective Christian developed
further information during his investigation and secured a search warrant.
Detective Christian and other Special Investigations Unit (SIU) investigators
served the warrant and detained three suspects in the location. The
primary suspect was conducting a narcotics transaction at the time of the
warrant service. During execution of the search warrant, Pasadena
detectives recovered approximately 2.6 ounces of crystal methamphetamine, 64
grams of heroin, and US Currency. The suspects were transported to the Pasadena
jail and booked for narcotics charges.
On February 1, the Pasadena Police Department’s Traffic Division
conducted a DUI/CDL Checkpoint near Arroyo Parkway and Fillmore Street. Almost
1500 vehicles passed through the checkpoint. Officers arrested 11 drivers
for operating a motor vehicle without a driver’s license and three additional
drivers were arrested for operating a motor vehicle on a suspended
license. The checkpoint was funded by a traffic safety grant from UC
Berkley. Sergeants Ortiz and Dahlstein supervised the
On February 3, at about 5:17 p.m., Arcadia Police
Department (APD) pursued a vehicle into our jurisdiction. APD officers
were on surveillance in their city when they observed a suspicious person.
APD officers attempted to stop him and he fled in a 2012 Jeep 4x4.
The vehicle pursuit entered Pasadena on California Street at
Madre. The suspect lost control of his vehicle and entered the front yard
at 3000 East California, ultimately crashing into the side of the residence.
No one was home at the time of the collision and the damage to the dwelling
was minimal. Pasadena Police officers assisted APD with a felony stop.
The lone suspect immediately exited the vehicle and attempted to flee;
however, when he observed the Pasadena Police helicopter overhead (piloted
by TJ Gonzalez, TFO Tommy Corralez) he surrendered and was taken into
custody without further incident. Sergeant Sharma supervised the
Phillip L. Sanchez, Chief of Police
Pasadena Police Department
207 N. Garfield Ave., Pasadena, CA 91101
Office: (626) 744-4545
Mission First, People Always