Crime Beat

POSTERS INFORM PUBLIC HOW TO REPORT SUSPECTED TRAFFICKING

By Rebecca Jefferis Williamson

July 29, 2019 (San Diego) - California Senate Bill 1193 (SB1193), enacted in 2013, added a law that certain businesses such as on-sale beer and liquor establishments, general public premise licenses, type 48are required to post a notice to help and assist victims of human trafficking, and alert the general public, on how to report the sex trafficking.

12-YEAR-OLD RESCUED FROM SUSPECTED SEX TRAFFICKERS IN SPRING VALLEY

By Miriam Raftery
 
July 28, 2019 (Spring Valley) – Yesterday, detectives from the San Diego Human Trafficking Task Force were investigating suspected sex trafficking of a 12-year-old runaway girl. While checking a possible location in the 8500 block of Paradise Valley Rd. in Spring Valley, detectives found and recovered the missing girl.

GANG MEMBERS CONVICTED IN MURDER OF XUSHA BROWN JR. AND AN EARLIER KILLING, BOTH IN LA MESA

By Miriam Raftery

Photo: Xusha Brown, Jr., innocent victim of gangland shooting

 

July 25, 2019 (La Mesa) – “We will continue to fight until justice is done,” Deborah Flores, mother of slain Sycuan tribal member Xusha Brown Jr. said at a press conference in 2016, when the tribe boosted a reward to $100,000 to help find his killer. La Mesa Police also posted the reward information on freeway signs. Three weeks later, three men were arrested for the drive-by shooting of Brown, 22, which occurred on I-8 in La Mesa in 2013.

SHERIFF'S ASTREA DEPUTIES HONORED FOR EAST COUNTY RESCUE

Aviation Association recognizes deputies for saving skier's life

East County News Service

July 24, 2019 (Pine Valley) -- They help keep San Diego County safe from high above the ground. Today, two deputies with the Sheriff's ASTREA (Aerial Support To Regional Enforcement Agencies) helicopter unit have been honored by the Airborne Public Safety Association (APSA) for the demanding technical rescue of a cross country skier near Pine Valley earlier this year.

LEMON GROVE CHECKPOINT RESULTS IN A DUI ARREST AND 22 CITATIONS; 10 VEHICLES IMPOUNDED

East County News Service
 
July 23, 2019 (Lemon Grove) – A DUI sobriety and drivers license checkpoint on July 20th in Lemon Grove resulted in one arrest for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. In addition, 22 citations were issued for suspended, revoked or no driver’s licenses and 10 vehicles were impounded.

STRANGLING SUSPECT ARRESTED AT GROSSMONT CENTER

By Miriam Raftery
 
July 19, 2019 (La Mesa) – A man suspected of strangling his former girlfriend was arrested at 8:20 this morning in the parking garage next to Target in the Grossmont Center regional shopping mall.  The woman called police last night to report the strangling that allegedly occurred at her home in San Carlos on Hyde Park Drive. She was treated at a hospital, according to the San Diego Union-Tribune.

BEN AND JESSICA KALASHO ARRAIGNED ON CONTEMPT OF COURT CHARGES

By Paul Kruze, Contributing Editor

July 18, 2019 (San Diego) – Over two years after a sexual harassment and fraud lawsuit was filed against Ben and Jessica Kalasho, the couple was arraigned last Friday in San Diego Superior Court on multiple counts of contempt of court. The former El Cajon Councilman and his wife are charged with failing to provide subpoenaed documents and actively interfering in the judicial process.

According to legal experts, the punishment for contempt of court can vary greatly. If it is a matter of urgency or if the contempt was done in front of a judge, the punishment can be immediate. Punishment can range from imprisonment of up to five years, to jail time merely until the defendant complies with the order or fine.

SON KILLS MOTHER, THEN SELF IN BORREGO SPRINGS

Update July 19, 2019:  The Medical Examiner has completed the autopsies and identified Ann Sides and her son, Corey Sides. Ann Sides cause of death has been ruled as a gunshot wound, and the manner of death, a homicide. Corey Sides cause of death has been ruled as a gunshot wound, and the manner of death, a suicide.
 
East County News Service
 
July 17, 2019 (Borrego Springs) — A homicide investigation is underway after the bodies of a man and woman were found inside a home at 2909 Double O Road in Borrego Springs this morning. Both had trauma to their bodies, says Lt.Chad Boudreau.

ALLEGED BURGLAR KILLED AT HOME NEAR LAKE MURRAY

By Miriam Raftery

Photo courtesy of ECM news partner 10 News

Update July 19, 2019: Police have identified the decease as Hollis Forman, 38.

 

July 16, 2019 (San Carlos) – An alleged burglar was shot and killed after being confronted by a homeowner and the homeowner’s son in the 6300 block of Lake Shore Drive around 6:30 a.m. 

FBI SEEKS VICTIMS IN INDONESIA SHOWBIZ SCAM INVESTIGATION

Source: FBI

July 15, 2019 (San Diego) -- The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is seeking victims who may have traveled to Indonesia under the promise of a potential job offer from individuals purporting falsely to be well-known entertainment industry professionals. This ongoing transnational fraud scheme targeting U.S. citizens began in approximately 2013. Today, the FBI launched a victim page and form, available at www.fbi.gov/IndonesiaShowbizScam, to identify additional victims of the scam.  Below is information provided by Special Agent Davene Butler, Public Affairs Coordinator for the San Diego FBI.

ADVANCING HEALTHY COMMUNITIES: CRIME FREE MULTIHOUSING

By David R. Shorey, East County Program Manager, Institute for Public Strategies

 

Photo courtesy San Diego County Sheriff’s Department website, other photos via Creative Commons

 

July 10, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) -- Imagine you lived in an apartment complex so riddled with crime and danger, that law enforcement officers would not enter the property until backup arrived. A place where firefighters would not respond to a fire unless they were accompanied by sheriff’s deputies for protection. Where helicopters frequently flew overhead in search of a suspect, or attempting to restore peace. Where drive-by shootings, vandalism, prostitution, thefts, drug dealing, gangs and violence ruled the day.

BB SHOTS DAMAGE BUSINESSES AND VEHICLES IN SEVERAL COMMUNITIES

East County News Service

Photo: ECM news partner 10 News

July 8, 2019 (San Diego) – BB gun pellets fired in the College Area Sunday night damaged at least four businesses on El Cajon Boulevard near 71st street.  The BBs broke windows in an appliance store, an auto body shop, a coffee shop and a plasma center, as well as shattering a window in a vehicle parked nearby, 10 News reports.

JULIAN BURGLARY SUSPECT FROM EL CAJON BUSTED AFTER CRASHING STOLEN BAJA BUG

By Miriam Raftery 

July 5, 2019 (Julian) – A Sheriff’s deputy investigating a burglary that occurred overnight in the 3300 block of Pine Hills Road spotted a Baja Bug (a Volkswagon beetle car altered for off-road use) drive onto the victim’s property this morning.  Realizing this could be the burglar returning to steal more items, the deputy tried to contact the driver, who sped away.

SHOTS FIRED OUTSIDE MOVIE THEATRE IN RANCHO SAN DIEGO

By Miriam Raftery
 
July 3, 2019 (Rancho San Diego) – Last night around midnight, three boys ran into the Regal Edwards Cinema in Rancho San Diego to report a shooter outside, NBC 7 reports.
 
Several people in the theater called 911 and Sheriff’s deputies responded.  The boys told Sheriff’s officials that a man had pulled out a handgun and fired shots in the air after an argument with the boys.  The shooter was reportedly a passenger in a four-door, silver or gray car. 

ANDREW OTERO IN HIS OWN WORDS

By Paul Kruze, Contributing Editor
 
July 3, 2019 (El Cajon) - Andrew Otero on Tuesday released a long written statement on his involvement in a construction contracting scheme. Otero was sentenced Friday in federal court after being found guilty of defrauding the federal government to obtain funds allocated for businesses owned by disabled veterans. Otero states, “I make no excuse, and take full responsibility for what I was convicted of. When you bend rules sometimes you have not even the slightest idea of what the consequences can turn out to be.”

JUDGMENT DAY FOR LOCAL CONTRACTOR ANDREW OTERO

A U.S. District Court judge fines and sentences Otero to federal prison for fraud

 

By Paul Kruze, Contributing Editor

 

July 3, 2019 (San Diego) -- Friday was judgment day for Andrew R. Otero, owner of A&D General Contracting and husband of Cajon Valley Union School District president Tamara Otero.  

 

Otero, a San Diego building contractor, was sentenced by Senior U.S. District Judge John Houston after a federal jury convicted Otero last November of fraudulently obtaining over $11 million dollars in government contracts through his company which had been set aside for small businesses owned by disabled veterans.

CHP OFFICER STRUCK BY DUI DRIVER ON I-8 SUSTAINS MAJOR INJURY

East County News Service 

June 28, 2019 (El Cajon) – A CHP officer who had stopped to aid a disabled motorist in the center divide of Interstate 8 last night at 9:24 p.m. in El Cajon was struck by a Chevrolet Camero driven at a high rate of speed by Richard Chambers, 25.  The accident occurred on I-8 west, just east of West Main Street.

TWO EL CAJON STRONG-ARM ROBBERY SUSPECTS STILL AT LARGE, ONE ARRESTED IN ROLANDO

By Miriam Raftery

June 27, 2019 (El Cajon) – Two suspects masked with black bandanas demanded merchandise from customers at a T-Mobile store at 354 N. Second Street in El Cajon at 11:05 a.m. yesterday. A customer was assaulted, suffering minor injuries before the two robbers fled in a dark Chrysler four-door sedan along with a third suspect.

Two of the suspects were described as black male adult wearing jeans.  One wore a black hooded sweatshirt and is around 6 ft. tall, weighing 200 pounds. The other is approximately 5 ft. 7 inches tall and weighs 170 pounds.  A third suspect is of unknown description.

REWARD OFFERED FOR INFO ON SUSPECT IN SHOOTING OF LA MESA WOMAN

East County News Service

 

June 27, 2019 (La Mesa) – A woman who was shot in the leg at her La Mesa home called 9-1-1 this evening.  La Mesa Police responded at 6:13 p.m. to the residence at 3752 Harris Street, where they found the woman in the front of the home and administered first aid until paramedics arrived.

LEMON GROVE MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO MANSLAUGHTER

East County News Service
 
June 27, 2019 (Lemon Grove) – Gustavo Flores, 39, has pleaded guilty to killing Juan Martinez, 47, after a fight near the Home Depot store in Lemon Grove last year on June 21, 2018. 
 
The charge was reduced from murder to manslaughter.  Martinez could face up to 13 years in prison for striking fatal blows with an unknown weapon.

7 ARRESTED IN RAIDS ON ILLEGAL MARIJUANA DISPENSARIES IN CASA DE ORO

By Miriam Raftery
 
June 20, 2019 (Spring Valley) – Seven people have been arrested following raids yesterday morning on three illegal marijuana dispensaries in the Casa de Oro area of Spring Valley.  An abatement warrant and three search warrants were served at an office complex at 9966 Dolores Street in units 102, 108 and 208. Sheriff’s deputies found over 600 pounds of marijuana along with marijuana edibles, drug paraphernalia, $21,000 cash, and four firearms. 

DRIVER ARRESTED ON SUSPICION OF DRIVING UNDER INFLUENCE AFTER INJURY CRASH IN EL CAJON

By Miriam Raftery
 
June 17, 2019 (El Cajon) – A 22-year-old man has been arrested by El Cajon Police following a collision that occurred shortly after midnight at Jamacha Road and Vista del Valley Blvd. The crash injured two people, one seriously.

SHERIFF SWEEP ARRESTS 36 IN EAST COUNTY

Source: San Diego Sheriff’s Department

 

June 16, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) – Yesterday, 36 adults were arrested in a sweep by the San Diego Sheriff’s court services bureau, clearing 44 misdemeanor warrants and two felony warrants.  The operation focused on apprehending people with outstanding warrants, regardless of charges or bail amounts. It was conducted in Lemon Grove, Spring Valley, Jamul, El Cajon and La Mesa, says Sergeant David Pocklington.

BORDER PATROL AGENTS HOSPITALIZED BRIEFLY WITH SYMPTOMS AFTER STOP FINDS DRUGS IN VEHICLE

By Miriam Raftery

June 14, 2019 (Campo) – After Border Patrol agents stopped two vehicles in Campo on June 2nd that were traveling in tandem and suspected of smuggling undocumented immigrants, drug paraphernalia was observed during examination of the vehicles.  “Shortly after, one of the agents began coughing and complained of nausea,” says Justin Castrejon, public affairs officer for the Border Patrol in San Diego.  The agent reported an odor from inside one of the suspect vehicles.  The San Diego County Hazardous Incident Response Team responded, ECM news partner 10 News has learned.

BOMB THREAT AT POWAY HIGH SCHOOL A HOAX

East County News Service
 
June 11, 2019 (Poway) -- After a Poway High School staff member received an email claiming one or more explosive devices had been concealed on campus, Sheriff’s deputies today responded and secured the campus with cooperation of the school’s staff.  A search was conducted with help from Harbor Police K-9 units.

EL CAJON POLICE TEEN ACADEMY BEGINS JUNE 17

Source:  El Cajon Police Department

June 11, 2019 (El Cajon) - The El Cajon Police Department will be hosting its 4th Annual Teen Academy beginning on June 17, 2018. The academy will run Monday through Friday for two weeks, concluding with a graduation ceremony on Friday, June 28, 2019. Classes will begin at 7:30 am every morning, and conclude at 3:30 pm every afternoon. There are a total of 27 teens in this year’s Teen Academy. 

SHOOTING THREAT PROMPTS DISMISSAL AT BANCROFT ELEMENTARY

By Miriam Raftery

May 30, 2019 (Spring Valley) – A male caller, possibly a juvenile, called Bancroft Elementary School in Spring Valley at 2:44 p.m. today to state that there would be a shooting and warned the school to go on lockdown.  Staff put the school into lockdown and notified the Sheriff.

Sheriff’s deputies and California Highway Patrol officers responded.  There were no further threats or substantiation, but the school dismissed students with law enforcement present.

EAST COUNTY SUPERINTENDENTS AMONG 11 INDICTED IN CHARTER SCHOOL FRAUD SCHEME

By Miriam Raftery

May 30, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) – San Diego District Attorney Summer Stephan yesterday announced indictments against 11 individuals in a statewide charter school scheme that stole over $50 million in public funds.  Those indicted include Nancy Hauer, superintendent of the Dehesa Elementary School District in El Cajon, and Steve Van Zant, former superintendent of the Mountain Empire Unified School District that services Descanso, Pine Valley, Potrero and Campo.

The ringleaders, Sean McManus and Jason Schrock, CEO and president of A3 Education, sought out small school district with limited oversight experience and proposed that they authorize online charter schools to earn oversight fees paid for through public funds, according to the 253-page indictment handed down by a grand jury investigation May 17th after a year-long investigation that involved interviewing over 70 witnesses.

Pages