Touching Base: A Message from the Chief (06/23/13)

Touching Base:  A Message from the Chief
June 23, 2013

Dear Community Members and Department Personnel:  

Our Community: 

On June 16, the Pasadena Police Department and Paseo Colorado hosted it annual Classic Car Show, which was held next to the Chalk Walk Festival.  The events were well attended and there were more than 77 classic cars in the show.  The department’s static show featured the MD 500 Helicopter and the Bear-Cat Tactical Rescue Vehicle.   Special thanks to the men and women who volunteered to make the car show a huge success. PPD Community Services Section Officer Cristian Allen was lead coordinator for the Car Show, assisted by Officer Ralph Ordonez, Sgt. Bobby Lomeli, and supported by Lieutenant Ed Calatayud. Significant contributions were made on the part of PD Explorers and their advisors, Officer Dave Thomas and Corporal Glenn Thompson, Special Enforcement Section Officer Anthony McGlade, Air Ops Section Pilot Steve Thurston, and Jose Valdez. Special thanks to the numerous PD Volunteers and PAL Board Members for their contributions while managing the information center.  

On June 20, Pasadena Police Lieutenant Ed Calatayud, along with personnel assigned to the department’s Community Service Section & Safe Schools Team, hosted a BBQ lunch for local students attending the Lake Avenue Church Summer Skills Program.  I understand the event was very well attended by students and staff.   

On June 22, Commander Chris Russ, Sergeant Dennis Beene, Officer Matthew Chavarin, Deborah K Sanchez and I attended the “Happy Birthday Pasadena” celebration, which was held at the Pasadena Museum of History.  Several VIPs attended the cake-cutting ceremony.    

On June 22, Deputy Chief Darryl Qualls, Commander Chris Russ, Lieutenants Diego Torres and Pete Hettema, Sergeant Dennis Beene, Officers Shannon Reece and Jamie Robinson  attended the “Evening with the Star Chefs” to support Rosemary Children’s Services. The event was held at Pasadena City Hall and was well attended.   

On June 22, Commander John Perez and Norma Perez, Deborah K. Sanchez and I attended the Pasadena Mental Health Center’s “Change the Beat” fund raiser.  The event was well attended and helped raise issues associated with mental health.  Pasadena Mental Health Center has been a long-time community partner in the effort to assist those suffering from mental health issues.   

Pasadena’s Finest: 

On June 13, I received an email from Pali Mountain Retreat and Conference Center Director Jennifer Sirekia, commending PPD Officer Sahak Nersesyan for his professional attitude and energy during a recent meeting.  Jennifer wrote, “…thank you all for your time and hard work that you put into planning the retreat.  From the beginning to the end, you were professional, organized, and communicated all your needs to me in a timely manner…”  

On June 17, I received an email from a Pasadena community member commending several Pasadena police officers and dispatchers for their efforts to recover a stolen I-Phone.  The author wrote, “… I couldn’t be more pleased with their consideration and promptness, especially while so many officers were dealing with the tragic events at Del Mar and Michigan…”   

On June 17, I received an email from a Pasadena community member commending Pasadena Police Motor Officer Gil Ortiz for his efforts during a “hit and run” traffic investigation.  The author wrote, “…Officer Ortiz handled the matter in such a professional way….”   

On June 22, Commander Chris Russ, Lieutenant Ed Calatayud, Corporal Glenn Thompson, Officers Veronica Burris, Darryl Harris, David Thomas, PS Michele White, and I attended the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Explorer Academy graduation, which was held in Whittier.  More than 40 police explorers graduated from the academy program as family, friends, and police personnel watched.  The Pasadena Police Department has an exceptional Explorer program, which is facilitated by Corporal Glenn Thompson, Officer Anthony Riley, and Officer Darryl Harris.   

On June 22, Police Commander Chris Russ, Lieutenant Ed Calatayud, Explore Advisors and others attended the Pasadena Police Explorer Post 19 Awards Luncheon, which was held at Eden Garden Grill.  The lunched honored our explorers for their achievements and accomplishments over the past year.  To learn more about the Pasadena Police Department’s Explorer Program, please visit our webpage at: cityofpasadena.net/Police.   

Critical Incidents: 

On June 15 at about 5:40 p.m., Pasadena police officers responded to the area of Del Mar Avenue and Michigan regarding a vehicle vs. bicyclist traffic accident.  The victim was riding alongside his girlfriend when he was hit by a driver traveling on Del Mar Avenue.  The victim was transported to a local hospital where he later died.  The accident is under investigation.   

On June 16, Pasadena Police Corporal David Llanes arrested a Male Adult fugitive in Los Angeles after several weeks of investigation.  David is assigned the U.S. Marshal Southwest Regional Fugitive Task Force.   

From June 16 – June 17, the Pasadena Police Department investigated a string of four armed street robberies.  During the commission of the first robbery, the victim recorded part of the license plate number of the suspect’s car. On June 17, the suspects robbed another victim who also recorded a partial license plate number. Pasadena Police Officer Mathew Jones conducted some “good old fashion police work,” and pieced together a likely license plate number.  Additional investigation led to several solid leads, which included the suspect’s vehicle registration information.  Matt shared his findings with Sergeant Vic Alaniz, who requested the assistance of the Fugitive Apprehension Unit (FAU).   

FAU detectives observed a Male Black Adult matching the physical description of one of the armed robbery suspects, enter the vehicle.  Officers Alex Torres and Panfilo De La Cruz stopped the vehicle and detained the suspect driver.  During the field investigation, Alex and Panfilo discovered a BB pistol and several pieces of property.  A field show up was conducted and one of the victims positively identified the driver as one of the suspects involved in the string of robberies.  Additional investigation revealed the names of the remaining two suspects, who were juveniles.  Officers later arrested the outstanding suspects without incident.  The suspects were booked at the Pasadena jail. The investigation was assigned to Pasadena Detectives David Duran and Anthony Russo, who prepared the case for review by the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.  The DA filed several felony charges against the suspects.   

On June 20 at about 4:30 p.m., Pasadena police officers assisted PFD at a structure fire in the 200 block of East Montana Street.  PPD officers assisted with traffic control while fire fighters knocked down the fire.  The origin of the fire is under investigation.  


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


Posted: 6/23/2013 08:10:00 AM
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