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97-Year-Old Missing Man with Heart Condition and Dementia

Los Angeles:  The family of Andrew James Seba and the Los Angeles Police Department Wilshire Division are asking for the public’s help in finding him.

Yesterday, at around 10 p.m., Mr. Seba was last seen in the 8000 block of Blackburn Avenue.  Mr. Seba also goes by the name “Duke Seba.”

Mr. Seba suffers from dementia and has heart problems.  He is in need of medication for his heart condition.  Mr. Seba is described as a male White with grey hair and blue eyes.  He stands 5 feet 9 inches tall and weighs about 170 pounds.

Mr. Seba has been known to frequent the 1400 block of Orange Drive, 1300 block North Sycamore Avenue and the Holy Cross Cemetery in Culver City.  The Los Angeles Police Department utilized bloodhounds in the search of Seba and the dogs led officers to Hauser and 6th Street and lost the scent.

Anyone with information on the whereabouts of Seba is asked to contact Wilshire Division at 213-473-0476 or Missing Persons Unit at 213-996-1800.  During non-business hours or on weekends, calls should be directed to 1-877-LAPD-24-7.   Anyone wishing to remain anonymous should call Crimestoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (800-222-8477).  Tipsters may also contact Crimestoppers by texting to phone number 274637 (C-R-I-M-E-S on most keypads) with a cell phone.  All text messages should begin with the letters “LAPD.” Tipsters may also go to LAPDOnline.org, click on "webtips" and follow the prompts.

20-Year-Old Man Discovered Dead

Update
August 30, 2010

On Sunday August 29, 2010, Foothill detectives located and detained Miguel Ochoa and his brother Axel Chavez for further investigation in the killing of Jose Arroyo.  Based upon the investigation Ochoa and Chavez were placed under arrest and booked for the murder of Jose Arroyo.

The investigation is ongoing and detectives will continue to seek additional information from witnesses who may have information on this case.  The weapon recovered at the crime scene will be tested for ballistics.  The motive for this crime is unknown at this time.  This case is not gang related.

Los Angeles: Los Angeles Police Department Foothill Division Detectives are asking the public to provide information that would lead to the arrest of a suspect wanted for killing 20-year-old Jose Arroyo.


On August 29, 2010, around 2:37 a.m., Foothill Patrol Officers responded to a radio call of an Ambulance Assault with Deadly Weapon in the 8400 block of Lankershim Boulevard in the North Hollywood area of Foothill Division.  Officers discovered 20-year-old Jose Arroyo, a North Hollywood resident, dead from a gunshot wound.  

Detectives interviewed numerous witnesses who gave accounts of the shooting.  The location is a rental hall that was being used for a wedding reception.  As the event ended for the evening, there was a dispute to the rear of the building between several parties that had attended the reception. The dispute lead to a shooting, and a male Hispanic suspect discharged a firearm killing the victim.  Several persons ran from the scene.  

According to detectives investigating the crime, 28-year-old Miguel Ochoa and his brother 19-year-old Axel Chavez were the two suspects involved in the dispute.  The dispute lead to a shooting and one of the suspects shot Arroyo killing him.  Ochoa and Chavez ran away from the scene.  As they were leaving the area, the suspects were involved in a single motor vehicle traffic accident on the freeway.  Miguel Ochoa is a civilian security officer employed by the County of Los Angeles.

The investigation is still ongoing at this time.   The weapon is in custody and the motive is unknown.  This case is not gang related.      
 
Anyone with information on this crime is asked to call Foothill Detectives Farell and Byers at 818-834-3115.  During non-business hours or on weekends, calls should be directed to 1-877-LAPD-24-7.   Anyone wishing to remain anonymous should call Crimestoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (800-222-8477).  Tipsters may also contact Crimestoppers by texting to phone number 274637 (C-R-I-M-E-S on most keypads) with a cell phone.  All text messages should begin with the letters “LAPD.” Tipsters may also go to LAPDOnline.org, click on "webtips" and follow the prompts.

August COP message

Mid Year Crime Stats

When I became your Chief, I committed to working hard for each and every member of this Department of which I am so proud.  As I write this message and reflect on some of the accomplishments we have achieved together, I am truly even more pleased.  When goals were set at the beginning of the year, I asked for a few things.  I asked for your commitment to continue to work hard to drive crime down, police in a constitutional manner, and prepare for and work to prevent acts of terrorism.  I also asked for your personal commitment to maintain employee wellness, not as a mandate, but because we have a moral and personal obligation to help one another and stay healthy in all aspects of our lives at home and at work.  I recognize each and every day, extraordinary things are expected of you and sometimes a little bit of praise and recognition can go a long way.  As a police officer, I understand the value in knowing deep in your heart you are supported by the community, your supervisors, and most of all, the Department.  When I can demonstrate my support and appreciation for you, through my interactions with you on patrol or through a personal note of thanks, I am reminded this is one of the most important and rewarding aspects of my job.  You continue to demonstrate it is possible for each and every employee of this Department to make a difference.

Thanks to your commitment and hard work we have continued a historic and unprecedented eight years of crime decline.  As the City is faced with the many challenges and choices in balancing the budget, we have been successful and effective at keeping crime down, particularly gang crime.  This is truly an accomplishment you all should be proud of and one that is singular in nature, as crime continues to rise in other large cities across the nation. We never could have done this without the tremendous support of our civilian staff who for the past year have given so much in both commitment and financial sacrifice.  Through their sacrifice of furloughs we have been able to keep police officers in the black and whites.

Before I get to the 2010 mid-year crime numbers, I want to remind all of you why we do this job.  On July 7th, 57-year old Lonnie Franklin Jr. was arrested in 77th Division, ending a serial killing spree that had lasted more than 20-years and giving hope to the families of his 10 victims that justice will be served.  Franklin was dubbed the “Grim Sleeper.”  The use of familial DNA that led to his arrest will become a landmark case that will change the way policing is done in the United States.  RHD Cold Case Detectives, who were part of the 800 Task Force, have been working tirelessly since 2007 to identify and capture Franklin.  Working with the California Department of Justice, DNA from Franklin’s son, who is also a convicted felon, established a familial connection between the family member and DNA that had been collected at the murder scenes.  That connection was used to identify Franklin.  Once we had a sample of his DNA, there was no question we had our killer.  I want to congratulate everyone, sworn and civilian, who worked tirelessly on this case for more than three consecutive days collecting and documenting the evidence at scene.  This investigation is the first of its kind in the United States and brings us on par with the way DNA searches are done in some parts of Western Europe.  Most importantly it will bring justice to victims to which it has been denied.

You have clearly made a difference and saved lives.  Compared to the first six months of 2009, violent crime is down 11.4%, property crimes decreased 5.3% and Part I Crimes fell 6.6%.  While homicides increased from 144 to 150 for an increase of 4.2%, the overall decline from 2005 to 2010 is nearly 40%. 

I have said it before and I will say it again, the cause and reason for the decline in crime is clear, it is the sworn and civilian men and women of this great Department and your dedication to the people of the many communities we protect and serve.  This successful result is undeniable proof LAPD sworn and civilian personnel have an abundance of strength, talent and goodwill.

Particularly impressive is your commitment in battling gangs in their attempts to dominate community life in Los Angeles.  You have been able to use creative gang prevention and apprehension strategies to cripple some of our most violent street gangs.  You kept gang homicides from increasing in the first half of 2009.  You reduced aggravated assaults by 8.5%, rape by 23.5%, and decreased gang crime overall by 9.4%.

I have always understood an essential component of the Department is our civilian workforce.  Civilians are a vital part of the day to day operations of the LAPD.  They are vital to our success and without them we could not accomplish the Department goals and objectives.  I want to say a special thank you to our civilian workforce, because they are critical members of our LAPD team and every bit a part of our success in fighting crime.  I am very thankful for our civilian employees and recognize their remarkable work in keeping the LAPD moving forward.

 iWATCH

As you are aware, one of the goals I set for this year was the prevention of terrorist incidents.  We must be vigilant and steadfast in our efforts to recognize signs and prevent attacks.  As a Department we cannot do this alone.  This is why we are partnering with our communities to launch iWATCH.  The iWATCH program will serve as a valuable asset in our efforts to combat terrorism and prevent a major attack on our City.  This national program will utilize the people we serve in our own communities as additional resources in identifying potential risks.  Members of the public can report suspicious activities and behaviors by calling 1-877-A-THREAT, or reporting online at iWATCHLA.org.   In June, the iWATCH program was rolled out at the Los Angeles International Airport.  This allows us to share potential intelligence information with the Los Angeles World Airport Police to further protect LAX.  Any reports of suspicious behavior or activity will be analyzed by trained LAPD detectives. 

Our Senior Lead Officers and Community Relations Officers have also received training on this “21st century version of Neighborhood Watch” and iWATCH posters will be distributed to police and fire stations throughout the City.  It is important all of you are aware of this critical program.  You can access LAPDOnline.org for more information on iWATCH. 

 Together, We Can

Now that we are just past the mid-year mark and with a new fiscal budget, my staff and I are frequently meeting to identify critical positions within the Department and assess the possibility of promotions for both sworn and civilian personnel.  I remain cautiously optimistic we can create transfer and upgrade opportunities in the coming months.  

 Here’s the latest on the various projects in the works that have been initiated as a direct result of your inquiries and suggestions: 

  • A pilot program has been implemented at Van Nuys Jail to streamline the booking process and actually get officers released faster when arrestees need medical treatment
  • A project has been initiated to assess how we can improve the pertinence of performance evaluations for Reserve Officers
  • A Special Order is in the final stages of the approval process to amend the Investigative Report (IR) face sheet to document an involved person’s email address
  • We are looking at best practices to better track 171 hours when it comes to timekeeping, as the current systems are not developed for this type of management tool
  • We are researching the impact of the educational requirement for promotional exams and attempting to offer college credit for many of our in-service courses
  • In an effort to create consistency in filing requirements via fax, we are looking into how we can make this process easier and establish standardization citywide

69-Year-Old, Alzheimer Man Missing

Los Angeles:  The family of Manuel De Jesus Barrios and the Los Angeles Police Department West Valley Division are asking for the public’s help in locating him.  Mr. Barrios was last seen on Thursday, August 19, 2010, at around 10 am, in the 16000 block of Victory Boulevard.

Mr. Barrios suffers from Alzheimer’s and is in need of his medication.  Mr. Barrios has in the past left his home for one or two days but he has not been seen or heard from in the last eight days.  He is described as a male Hispanic with grey hair and brown eyes.  He stands 5’8” and weighs around 225 pounds.  

Mr. Barrios has been known to frequent the Home Depot and recycling centers near Roscoe and Balboa.  Mr. Barrios also like to hang out with the homeless people in the area and has been seen pushing a shopping cart collecting recyclables.
 
If you have seen, or have any information regarding the whereabouts of Manuel De Jesus Barrios, please call West Valley Division at 818-374-7670 or the LAPD’s Missing Persons Unit at 213996-1800.

Teenager Killed in Lincoln Park

Los Angeles: The Los Angeles Police Department Hollenbeck Homicide Detectives are asking the public to provide information that would lead to the arrest of a suspect wanted for killing 15-year-old Miguel Machuca.

On August 28, 2010, at around 7:30 p.m., Hollenbeck officers responded to a radio call of shots fired in the Lincoln Park area.  When the officers arrived they found a male victim, later identified as Miguel Machuca, lying on the ground with what appeared to be a gunshot wound to the upper torso.

A suspect had pulled out a hand gun, fired several rounds striking Machuca.  A stray bullet hit an 11-year-old girl in the back.

Los Angeles Fire Department paramedics responded to the scene and transported both Machuca and the 11-year-old girl to a local hospital.  Shortly after, Machuca died from his injuries and the 11-year-old girl was listed in stable condition.

According to detectives investigating the crime, Machuca was at Lincoln Park with a friend when two suspects approached them.  One of the suspects described as a male Hispanic opened fire and shot Machuca.

Anyone with information on this crime is asked to call Hollenbeck Homicide Detectives Chavarria or Rios at 323-342-8957.  During non-business hours or on weekends, calls should be directed to 1-877-LAPD-24-7.   Anyone wishing to remain anonymous should call Crimestoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (800-222-8477).  Tipsters may also contact Crimestoppers by texting to phone number 274637 (C-R-I-M-E-S on most keypads) with a cell phone.  All text messages should begin with the letters “LAPD.” Tipsters may also go to LAPDOnline.org, click on "webtips" and follow the prompts.

Serial Burglar Sought

Los Angeles:  The Los Angeles Police Department’s (LAPD) North Hollywood and Van Nuys Area Burglary detectives are asking for the public’s help in locating a burglary suspect identified as 45-year-old Brian Keith Bakke.  

On July 19, 2010 at 9:20 p.m., Bakke entered a Blockbuster video store at 4821 Lankershim Boulevard in North Hollywood with a black duffel bag.  Bakke then filled the bag with numerous DVDs from the store and left without paying.

On August 1, 2010, at 12:55 p.m. Bakke entered a Target Store at 5711 Sepulveda Boulevard in Van Nuys carrying a laundry basket. Again, he filled the basket with numerous DVDs and left without paying.  He returned to that same store on August 6, 2010, at 12:30 p.m., with a garbage bag and once more filled the bag with numerous DVDs and left without paying.  On both occasions, Bakke was seen driving away from the location in a four-door, silver, 1994 Lincoln Town Car with Minnesota plates, 205EAK.  The vehicle has been located and is currently in police custody.

On August 16, 2010, at 5 p.m., Bakke entered a 7-11 Store located at 11666 Burbank Boulevard in North Hollywood.  He opened a box of trash bags, removed a bag from the box and used that bag to steal numerous DVDs from the store.

Bakke is described as a 45-year-old White male with brown hair and brown eyes.  He stands 6 feet 2 inches tall and weighs around 250 pounds.

Anyone with information regarding this case is asked to call North Hollywood Detective Hoover at 818-623-4081 or Van Nuys Detective O’Connor at 818-374-0024.  During non-business hours or on weekends, calls should be directed to 1-877-LAPD-24-7.   Anyone wishing to remain anonymous should call Crimestoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (800-222-8477).  Tipsters may also contact Crimestoppers by texting to phone number 274637 (C-R-I-M-E-S on most keypads) with a cell phone.  All text messages should begin with the letters “LAPD.” Tipsters may also go to LAPDOnline.org, click on "webtips" and follow the prompts.

51-Year-old Missing Woman

Los Angeles:  The family of Donna Jones and the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) are asking for the public’s help to locate Ms. Jones who was last seen July 30, 2010.

Ms. Jones was last seen driving away from her home in the 3000 block of Cimarron Street, in Los Angeles.  She is described as a 51-year-old female Black with black hair and brown eyes.  She stands 5’7” tall and weighs approximately170 pounds.  

Ms. Jones was last seen driving a 1994 GMC black Suburban with unknown California plates.

If you have seen, or have any information regarding the whereabouts of Donna Jones, please call Detective Merrill from the LAPD’s Missing Persons Unit at 213-996-1800.

L.A. County Sheriff's Officers Arrest Two Suspected Graffiti Vandals

By Johannes Boie, Los Angeles Times
August 25, 2010

They're searching for a third man suspected in tagging that caused nearly $340,000 in property damage.
Officers with the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Transit Bureau arrested two suspected graffiti vandals and are searching for a third suspect after serving search warrants Tuesday at their homes in Whittier and El Monte.

The three men are members of a tagging group called PCN, which stands for Painting City Nightly or Painters Causing Nightmares, deputies said. They are accused of causing $338,000 in damage to freeway bridges and L.A. County properties.  They started tagging about 1 1/2 years ago, officials said.

German Lara, 21, was arrested without incident early Tuesday at his home in the 1200 block of Danbrook Drive in Whittier. "This is a message to all taggers," said Lt. Vincent Carter. "If you don't stop tagging, we come to your houses at 7 in the morning, break down your door, wake you up and take you to jail."

Lara's mother opened the front door when deputies arrived and was cooperative. Later, she sat crying on the sidewalk. Lara was smiling as deputies arrested him. Three siblings also were home when deputies arrived.

Lara, who uses the tagging moniker Move, is responsible for $109,000, including $12,000 in damage to a railroad bridge owned by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, deputies said. His brother described him as the family's "black sheep," and one sister said he had refused to attend school, choosing instead to "hang out all night," deputies said.

Deputies seized several spray cans and a computer at Lara's house. Deputies said the computer contained pictures showing his alleged graffiti. They searched a second building in the backyard but found nothing.

Hours later and a few blocks away, Andrew Pineda, 20, of Whittier, who uses the tagger name Bogus, was arrested at his workplace. He is accused of causing about $109,000 in damage, including $30,000 to MTA property and about $79,000 to properties owned by the state of California and Union Pacific.

The third suspect, James Matthew Rivera, 20, whose tagger name is Supa or Supah, was not at his El Monte home when deputies arrived. He is accused of causing $120,000 in damage.

His grandmother, Amelia Reyes, 72, who lives at the house on Fruitvale Avenue with at least three of her 11 children and two other grandchildren, told deputies she did not know about Rivera's alleged tagging activities. His aunts said Rivera was a calm person who did not talk much.

Deputies seized a laptop from the Reyes home.

johannes.boie@latimes.com 

Notes from the August 24, 2010 Weekly Police Commission Meeting

•    Police Chief Charlie Beck informed the Board there were no homicides this past weekend and added the overall homicide rate as compared to last year is down 4.9%.  He added overall Part 1 crime is down across the board and said the Department is in a position to do very well heading into the end of the year. Chief Beck also said there are currently 9,910 sworn officers on the force and 2,889 civilian employees.

•    The Department’s report, dated August 13, 2010, relative to City Council Motion regarding the feasibility of developing a new Stepped Up Citation Program for littering (City Council Motion No. 55), was approved and transmitted to City Council.

•    The Department’s report, dated August 11, 2010, relative to Amendment to the Annual Audit and Inspection Plan Fiscal Year (FY) 2010/2011, was received and filed.

•    The Department’s report, dated August 6, 2010, relative to Department’s response to the Witness Protection Program System Audit, Fourth Quarter, (IAID No. 09-013), dated June 28, 2010, was received and filed.

•    The Department’s report, dated August 9, 2010, relative to Rampart Area Gang Enforcement Detail Command Accountability Performance Audit (IAID No. 10-051), as given by Captain Steve Ruiz, was approved.  Captain Ruiz stated this was the 3rd CAPA audit conducted on Rampart Area Gang Units in the last five years.  Five objectives where evaluated in the audit which include the evaluation of work product, supervisory rolls, gang intelligence information, criminal complaint process and case categorization. Three of the five objectives received 100% compliance, one received 98% compliance and the last received an 83% compliance rate.

COMPSTAT Citywide Profile

Crime Statistics August 21, 2010


VIOLENT CRIMES 
                 2010**           2009**          % Chg

Homicide                              196*                206            -4.9%
Rape                                     475                 550          -13.6%
Robbery                               7097               7887           -10.0%
Agg Assaults **                     6085               7101          -14.3%
Total Violent Crimes           13853             15744         -12.0%

PROPERTY CRIMES


Burglary                                10642            11550          -7.9%
BTFV                                    17931            18380          -2.4%
Personal/Other Theft            16603            17892          -7.2%
Auto Theft                            10765            11717          -8.1%
Total Property Crimes       55,941         59,539          -6.0%
Total Part I Crimes            69,794         75,283          -7.3%


* Numbers reflects a change in reclassification for Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) guidelines and numbers are adjusted accordingly.

** Prior to 2005, Aggravated Assaults included Child/Spousal Simple Assaults