Crime Beat

EL CAJON POLICE SEEK DRIVER WHO HIT AND SERIOUSLY INJURED CHILD

 

ECM photographer who aided victim gives eyewitness account of accident he calls "heartbreaking," calls for more funds for police to enforce traffic laws

By Miriam Raftery

Photo: Suspect vehicle, from surveillance footage

Update October 5, 2018 -- An arrest has been made in this case.  Read details here. 

October 4, 2018 (El Cajon) – A 9-year-old boy on a bicycle was hit and seriously injured this morning while crossing an intersection at Main Street and Sunshine Avenue. Police are seeking a woman described by witnesses as possibly blond and driving a blue hatchback or SUV, possibly a Honda Fit, who fled the scene of the accident.

ECM photographer Robert Gehr was walking home from the post office between 7:30 and 8 a.m. when he saw the boy ride past him, press a button and wait for the green light, then ride across the intersection. He witnessed the vehicle strike the child.

WHY ARE DEPUTIES WEARING PINK PATCHES?

 

Source: San Diego Sheriff’s Department

October 2, 2018 (San Diego) - During the month of October, Sheriff’s deputies have the option of wearing a pink version of their uniform patch. The patches are a great way to spark a conversation with the public and bring attention to the fight against breast cancer during the awareness month.

CHASE IN LAKESIDE RESULTS IN SCHOOL LOCKDOWN, INJURY TO DEPUTY

 

By Miriam Raftery

September 26, 2018 (Lakeside) – On Monday, September 24th, Sheriff’s deputies conducting traffic enforcement at Ashwood Street and Willows Road in Lakeside pulled over a vehicle that ran a stop sign. A male passenger ran out of the vehicle and jumped the fence into the El Capitan High School campus just as students were being released.

EL CAJON POLICE SEEK HIT AND RUN ALTIMA DRIVER WHO SERIOUSLY INJURED MAN IN WHEELCHAIR

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

September 22, 2018 (El Cajon) – El Cajon Police seek public help to find the driver of a silver Nissan Altima that struck and seriously injured a 58-year-old man in a wheelchair Thursday night around 9:25 p.m. in the 1000 block of East Main Street.

Officers and paramedics responding to a call of a pedestrian struck by a vehicle found the victim unconscious near the center left turn lane, alongside his wheelchair.  He was transported to a hospital with life-threatening head injuries, says Lt. Steve Kirk.

DUI DRIVER ARRESTED AFTER FLEEING SCENE OF FATAL CRASH IN SPRING VALLEY

 

Update September 22, 2018: The victim has been identified as Melanie Alexandra Feliciano, 24, who died of blunt force injuries to her head and neck, according to the San Diego County Medical Examiner.

By Miriam Raftery

Photo: ECM news partner 10 News

September 20, 2018 (Spring Valley) – Rene Ruiz, 27, has been arrested after fleeing the scene of a fatal crash that occurred on September 17th at 1:50 p.m. on State Route 94 in Spring Valley. He has been charged with felony manslaughter with gross negligence, felony hit and run, and felony driving under the influence of drugs.

CHP ENFORCEMENT FRIDAY TO TARGET MOTORISTS WHO ILLEGALLY PASS SCHOOL BUSES WHEN LIGHTS ARE FLASHING

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

September 17, 2018 (San Diego’s East County) - California Highway Patrol officers will be riding on school buses this Friday, September 21st to catch drivers who fail to stop when a bus flashes red lights and/or extends a stop arm. The enforcement operation will take place in unincorporated areas of East County.

DRUNK DRIVER SENTENCED TO 15 YEARS FOR KILLING HOMELESS PEDESTRIAN IN EL CAJON

 

By Miriam Raftery

September 12, 2018 (El Cajon) – Joshua Colby Ness, 33, of Lakeside was sentenced to 15 years in state prison for hitting and killing Michael Rourke, 60, a homeless man I El Cajon.  Ness, who fled the scene but later turned himself in to police, pled guilty to gross vehicular manslaughter.

LEMON GROVE CHECKPOINT LEADS TO 1 DUI ARREST, 11 CITATIONS FOR UNLICENSED OR SUSPENDED DRIVERS

 

 

East County News Service 

September 8, 2018 (Lemon Grove) — Following numerous hit and run collisions where drivers fled the scene and evidence of drinking and driving was found, the Sheriff’s department conducted a checkpoint on September 7th in the 8000 block of Broadway.

 

POLICE SEEK MAN WHO ACCOSTED YOUNG GIRLS IN KAISER-ZION HOSPITAL ELEVATOR

 

East County News Service

September 7, 2018 (San Diego) — Crime Stoppers is offering a $1,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of a man who made lewd comments to two 13-year-old girls in the elevator at Kaiser Permanente Zion Medical Center on the morning of August 25th.

SHOOTING DEATH IN LEMON GROVE

 

By Miriam Raftery

September 7, 2018 (Lemon Grove) --  Shortly after midnight, sheriff's deputies saw a man and woman inside a vehicle parked in the middle of the street  in the 7400 block of Pacific Avenue, in  Lemon Grove. When the deputies investigated, they found the man bleeding from what a witness described as a gunshot wound, says Lt. Rich Williams with the Sheriff’s homicide unit.

Deputies called for Lemon Grove Fire Department personnel to assist and began providing first aid.

“The man was seriously injured and soon stopped breathing. Deputies performed CPR until relieved by fire department personnel,” says Lt. Williams. However dDespite lifesaving efforts, the man was pronounced deceased at about 12:39 a.m.

BODY OF MISSING EL CAJON TEEN FOUND IN ARIZONA

 

By Miriam Raftery

September 5, 2018 (El Cajon) – The body of Kiera Bergman, 19, a graduate of Valhalla High School who has attended Cuyamaca College, was found September 3rd along state route 85 in a rural area outside of Phoenix, Arizona. Her family and authorities are asking for public help to find her killer.

FORMER GROSSMONT COLLEGE FOOTBALL COACH KILLED BY WIFE IN MURDER-SUICIDE

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo: Dave Jordan in 2012, courtesy of Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College District

September 2, 2018 (El Cajon) – A Blossom Valley couple, David Wesley Jordan, 82, and his wife, Jean Adele Jordon, 83, died of gunshots to their heads in an apparent murder-suicide, the Medical Examiner’s office has concluded.

A physical therapist told Sheriff’s homicide investigators that upon arrival at the home on Toya Lane in unincorporated El Cajon at 8 a.m. Friday, a note was on the sliding glass door.  The therapist entered the home and found the couple’s bodies in the living room.  A revolver was in Jean Jordan’s hands.

David Jordan was a long-time football coach at Grossmont College, where he led the team to a statewide championship title in 2005 and won many honors for his coaching.

CAL FIRE SAN DIEGO OFFICERS MAKE ARREST FOR ARSON IN LAKESIDE

 

Source: Cal Fire

August 30, 2018 (Lakeside) -- On Monday, San Diego Unit CAL FIRE law enforcement officers arrested Daniel Reyes Ortega, 21, a transient in Lakeside. Ortega was booked on charges of willfully and maliciously setting fire to forest land. The arrest and was made with cooperation of the San Diego Sheriff’s Department.

THIS LABOR DAY AND EVERY DAY: DRIVE SOBER OR GET PULLED OVER

 

 

By Sgt. K. Trotter, El Cajon Police

August 28, 2018 (El Cajon) — As we enter the final stretch of summer spending time at the pool or barbequing with friends and family, El Cajon Police Department is driving home the importance of celebrating responsibly by not driving, or riding a motorcycle, impaired. 

SANTEE JOGGER KILLED; DRIVER ARRESTED FOR DUI

 

Update August 29, 2018: The victim has been identified as Susana Gotell, 41, of Santee.

By Miriam Raftery

August 28, 2018 (Lakeside) – A woman jogging on North Woodside Avenue near Riverford Road in Santee was struck by a Chevy work truck driven by Michael Woodfill, 46, tonight at 6:40 p.m.  

Susana Gotell, 41, was transported to Sharp Memorial Hospital with major injuries, but died shortly after arrival.  She was the mother of two teens, ages 16 and 18, Fox 5 News reports.

HYUNDAI DRIVER KILLED AFTER CHASE THROUGH EL CAJON

 

East County News Service

August 26, 2018 (El Cajon) — A suspected drunk driver died after crashing into a tree and a retaining wall near the intersection of East Main and North Second Street in El Cajon early Saturday morning. The driver of the vehicle, a Hyundai, fled from California Highway Patrol Officers who tried to pull him over after they spotted him speeding and weaving on eastbound Interstate 8 near Severin Drive around 2 a.m.

SERIAL RAPIST PROPOSED FOR PLACEMENT IN JACUMBA: HEARING SET FOR OCTOBER 12

 

East County News Service

August 22, 2018 (Jacumba Hot Springs) – The Department of State Hospitals has proposed the release of Alvin Quarles, a sexually violent predator, at 43050 Desert Rose Ranch Road in Jacumba Hot Springs.  A serial rapist, Quarles attacked victims at knifepoint while they were sleeping in their homes or hotel rooms. He sometimes raped women in front of their husbands or boyfriends, and at times forced them to have sex while he watched.  Investigators suspect he was responsible for over a dozen assaults in San Diego County during the 1980s. In 1989, he was sentenced to 50 years in prison under a plea bargain.

COUNCILMAN BEN KALASHO PLED GUILTY TO CRIMINAL WORKERS' COMP FRAUD IN 2015, REMAINS ON PROBATION

 

By Paul Kruze, Contributing Editor

Photo: Bessmon "Ben" Kalasho, August 2015

August 9, 2018 (El Cajon)--An exclusive investigation by East County Magazine has uncovered a criminal case in which El Cajon Councilman Bessmon “Ben” Kalasho pled guilty to two counts of workers’ compensation fraud in October 2015 (court case #MD094871).  View full documents.

Kalasho was on probation for his crimes, both misdemeanors, when he ran for and won his seat on the City Council in 2016. He remains on probation until October 1, 2018. He was also fined.

Kalasho has pulled papers to run for El Cajon City Council again in November.   

WITNESS SAVES EL CAJON POLICE OFFICER ATTACKED BY HAMMER-WIELDING SUSPECT

 

East County News Service

August 8, 2018 (El Cajon) — A witness helped save an El Cajon Police officer today after a man attacked the officer with a hammer.

Police had been called to a Jack-in-the-Box regarding Robert Dille, 30, who was reportedly smashing windows and threatening people with a hammer. Officers found Dille a few blocks away at West Main Street and Van Houten around 11:20 a.m.

COPPER WIRE THIEVES ROB SANTEE SPORTSPLEX AND SANTANA HIGH

 

East County News Service

August 1, 2018 (Santee) - Thieves left Santee Sportsplex in the dark last week, making off with about $200 worth of copper electrical wiring stolen out of power boxes late Thursday night or early Friday morning.  But the theft cost the complex around $8,000, forcing cancellation of 15 youth and adult baseball and soccer games, NBC 7 reports.

POLICE SEEK HELP TO IDENTIFY SECOND POSSIBLE SUSPECT IN FATAL EL CAJON STABBING

 

By Miriam Raftery

July 29, 2018 (El Cajon) – A man stabbed in front of a 7-11 store in the 700 block of Jamacha yesterday afternoon died after being transported to a local hospital, says Lt. Walt Miller with the El Cajon Police Department. 

Soon after the stabbing, reported at 2:05 p.m. Saturday, officers responded to a burglary at an apartment in the 1200 block of north Mollison.  They took a burglary suspect to a hospital  for medical issues unrelated to his arrest, according to Lt. Miller.

“Investigators are exploring the possibility that this suspect may be related to the stabbing based on a physical description provided by witnesses,” said Miller. That suspect’s identity has not been released. However a second suspect may still be at large.

RED SUV DRIVER WANTED FOR BACKING OVER AND KILLING WOMAN ON HIGHWAY 94 NEAR STEELE CANYON, THEN FLEEING SCENE

 

By Miraim Raftery

July 27, 2018 (Jamul) – California Highway Patrol seeks public help to find the driver of a red or burgundy small SUV who reportedly backed up and killed a woman in her 30s who had gotten out of the vehicle. She was walking west on the shoulder of highway 94 near Steel Canyon Road in Spring Valley early Friday morning when the driver struck and seriously injured her. He reportedly remained at the scene for several minutes, and then fled.

The driver is described as an African-American man in his mid-30s, 5 ft. 7 to 5 ft. 8 inches tall, weighing 275-300 pounds with short hair and no visible tattoos. He was wearing light-colored clothes and a sweatband around his head.

CITIZENS HELP POLICE NAB SUSPECT AFTER STABBING OF 75-YEAR-OLD MAN IN EL CAJON

 

By Miriam Raftery

July 26, 2018 (El Cajon)—A 75-year-old man suffered multiple non-life threatening stab wounds tonight in an attack at Second Street and East Madison Avenue in El Cajon. Witnesses called police at 7:55 p.m. to report the victim was on the ground near the intersection.

The suspect fled west on Madison, says Lieutenant Jason Taub, adding, “Witnesses were able to keep the suspect under observation and advise the police department of his current location.”

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