Crime Beat

HEARING WED. ON RESTRAINING ORDER SOUGHT BY NAACP AGAINST EL CAJON POLICE AND SHERIFF

 

East County News Service

October 25, 2016 (El Cajon) – A hearing is set for tomorrow at 3 p.m. in U.S. District Court in downtown San Diego on a restraining order sought by the NAACP and several individuals who claim they were falsely arrested for holding peaceful protests and vigils in the wake of the Alfred Olango shooting by an El Cajon Police officer.

ATTEMPTED KIDNAPPING IN SANTEE: $1,000 REWARD OFFERED

 

East County News Service

October 20, 2016 (Santee) — Public help is sought to locate a suspect wanted in connection to an attempted kidnapping of an 18-year-old woman at Mast Park in Santee on October 6th around noon.  Now the San Diego County Crime Stoppers and Santee Sheriff’s station investigators released a sketch of the suspect.

8 ARRESTED AMID CIVIL UNREST IN EL CAJON; PROTESTERS FILE SUIT AGAINST CITY AND COUNTY

 

Update 2 p.m.: Police this afternoon are blocking access to the site that has been the focus of protests where  Alfred Olango was shot on Sept. 27.

East County News Service

October 18, 2016 (El Cajon) — El Cajon Police declared an unlawful assembly and arrested eight protesters last night at 800 Broadway near Mollison, the site where Alfred Olango was shot by police over two weeks ago.

According to a press release, the trouble started last night around 5 p.m. when two people arrived and became angry that a makeshift memorial had been removed. Police say the strip mall’s owner hired a security company to help return to business as usual. Earlier in the day, the release states, ”participants in the memorial, who had been asked to leave the property returned and asked to collect their items. They removed the tents, grills and other memorial and personal items. Neither the property owners nor the police department removed memorial items.

MAN GUNNED DOWN IN BOULEVARD

 

 

 

October 18, 2016 1 p.m. --Update:  Paul David Carr, 61, has been arrested for this crime.  The victim has been identified as Rev. Craig Hodson, 55,  from Grace Baptist  Church in Jacumba, father of 11 children. Cause of death was a penetrating gunshot wound to the torso.  The death has been ruled a homicide.  NBC 7 reports Rev. Hodson was serving an eviction notice on Carr when he was shot.

East County News Service

October 17, 2016 (Boulevard) – Sheriff’s deputies responding to a call of a shooting last night at 7:22 p.m. in rural Boulevard.  They found a 55-year-old white man with multiple bullet wounds to his torso, lying on the ground in front of a garage at 36536 Old Highway 80.  The man succumbed to his injuries at the scene despite medical aid rendered by deputies and later, paramedics who arrived.

FEMALE STUDENT FIGHTS OFF ATTACKER AT SDSU CAMPUS

 

East County News Service

October 16, 2016 (San Diego) — Campus police at San Diego State University have issued an alert warning about a sexual battery that occurred at 2:20 a.m. on Montezuma Road near East Campus Drive. 

According to police, an unknown white man in his mid-30s, wearing a dark shirt and pants, grabbed a female student and touched her inappropriately. The woman was able to fight the man off and run away. She was not injured.

A SURJ OF AWARENESS

 

Story and photos by Byron Croft

Shooting sparks broader conversation on police-citizen relations in East County and San Diego,  facilitated by Showing Up for Racial Justice (SURJ)

October 14, 2016 (El Cajon) -- The recent shooting of Alfred Olango in El Cajon has sparked a surge of conversation on the topic of how police handle people in some sort of mental distress, and how that handling may sometimes be different when the people police encounter happens to be with someone with skin darker than “white.” What for many, until recently, was viewed as a concern for those in larger cities, such as Chicago and New York, has now become a topic of discussion in East County, and surrounding San Diego.

LAKE MURRAY WOMAN MURDERED IN FRONT OF YOUNG SON

 

East County News Service

October 13, 2016 (Lake Murray) — Roderick Lamar Harris, 32, has been arrested on suspicion of fatally shooting his live-in girlfriend, Vanessa Bobo, 29.  According to police, the killing occurred in front of Bobo’s 5-year old son; her 1-year old son by Harris was a lso in the apartment in the 6400 block of Lake Arrowhead Drive.

GUATAY RESIDENT ROBERT MANCINI KILLED IN MOTORYCLE CRASH

 

East County News Service

October 11, 2016 (Guatay) — The Medical Examiner has identified Guatay resident Robert Ceasar Mancini, 54, the victim of a September 18, 2016 motorcycle crash in Alpine.

Mancini was riding his motorcycle westbound on Wildwood Glen Lane in Alpine when he reached the end of a county maintained road and struck a gate.  A resident heard the collision and called 911.

HUMAN SKULL FOUND IN RURAL ALPINE

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo: Clip art

October 11, 2016 (Dulzura) - A Border Patrol Agent tracking a border crosser on Friday made a grisly discovery:  a human skull.  The Sheriff’s office and Medical Examiner’s office were notified and recovered the remains. During the search, a long bone was located near the skull; no other remains were found.

TRUMP BOASTS OF SEXUAL ASSAULT, ON LIVE MICROPHONE

 

By Miriam Raftery

Warning: vulgar language

October 8,2016 (San Diego) – San Diego Mayor Bob Filner resigned in disgrace and was convicted of sexual harassment for forcibly kissing women and putting his hands on their buttocks.   Now , the Washington Post has released audio of presidential candidate Donald Trump making boasts in crude language of kissing women  and putting his hands on their genitals without permission---actions that constitute criminal sexual assault.

As an attractive woman approached, Trump described her as ”hot as shit” then said he needed ”Tic Tacs, just in case I start kissing her. You know I’m automatically attracted to beautiful—I just start kissing them.  It’s like a magnet…I don’t even wait. And when you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything.  Grab  them by the pussy.”

He also boasted of attempting unsuccessfully to have sex with a married woman shortly after his own wedding to his third wife, Melania. 

DETAILS ON PAST SHOOTINGS BY EL CAJON POLICE EMERGE

 

ECM records document 9 of the 12 ECPD shootings in the past decade

By Miriam Raftery

October 9, 2016 (El Cajon)—Yesterday,  the San Diego Union-Tribune reported that El Cajon Police Department had 12 officer-involved shootings in the past 10 years, including five fatal shootings.  According to the U-T,  El Cajon had the highest rate of shooting per 100,000 people of any law enforcement agency in the county.

The U-T story mentioned only two shootings specifically: the recent fatal shooting of Alfred Olango, an African refugee reportedly having a mental health crisis who pointed a vaping device resembling a gun at an officer, and Kelsey Hauser, a white female passenger fatally shot in January 2016 following a high-speed chase of a stolen vehicle that had rammed a police car.

East County Magazine searched our records, which date back to late 2008 when we began publishing,  and found details on a total of nine of the 12 shootings.  At least four of those were fatal, including the two listed above.

SANTEE HOMICIDE VICTIM IDENTIFIED AS LETICIA ARROYO

 

East County News Service

October 8, 2016 (Santee) — The woman found dead by her roommate on October 4th in Santee has been identified as Leticia Arroyo, 34. “The manner of death has been ruled a homicide,” said Lieutenant Kenneth Nelson with the Sheriff’s homicide unit.  “The autopsy for this case has been sealed.”

POLICE: 7TH GRADER MADE KILLER CLOWN THREAT TARGETING MIDDLE SCHOOL IN EL CAJON

By Miriam Raftery

October 7, 2016 (El Cajon )—El Cajon Police provided extra security today at Montgomery Middle School after a series of threats circulated on Instagram by a user named “elcajonclown.”

 ECM obtained a copy of one threat, which read, “Who wants to get hired killing teachers?” 10 News reports an additional threat posted, which stated, "Tomorrow we attacking Montgomery at 9:30 AM send this [expletive] to montgomerys teachers we will kill all teachers and kidnap students we will have 19 people age 17+ be ready.”

SANTEE HOMICIDE INVESTIGATION

 

By Miriam Raftery

October 5, 2016 (Santee) – Sheriff’s homicide detectives are investigating the death of a woman at her home in Santee last night.

The woman’s roommate called 911 to report finding the victim unconscious with trauma to her upper body.  Deputies and paramedics responded at 10:39 p.m. to the residence at 8837 Mission Greens Road #3 in Santee, but the woman was dead.

PROTESTERS ARRESTED IN EL CAJON OVER THE WEEKEND

 

By Miriam Raftery

October 3, 2016 (El Cajon) – Saturday night, El Cajon Police declared an unlawful assembly and arrested 14 people at a makeshift memorial site at 800 Broadway, where Alfred Olango was fatally shot last Tuesday by a police officer.

According to Lieutenant Rob Ransweiler, on Saturday night a vehicle was stopped for a traffic infraction leaving the protest area. The driver, who was under 21, was arrested for driving under the influence. Two passengers were also arrested for being drunk in public.  After the arrest, a small group of protesters gathered near800 Broadway.

MAN ARRESTED FOR STABBING ROOMMATE IN SPRING VALLEY

 

East County News Service

October 3, 2016 (Spring Valley) – Sheriff deputies responded to a report of a man threatening his roommate with a knife early this morning in the 8600 block of Valencia Street in Spring Valley.  At the residence they found John Borja covered in blood.  The victim, Justin Lacsamana, was stabbed multiple times and had been driven to a nearby gas station by a neighbor.

SHERIFF HOSTS COFFEE WITH COMMUNITY IN CASA DE ORO OCT. 27

 

East County News Service

October 2, 2016 (Spring Valley) - Community outreach is a top priority of the San Diego County Sheriff's Department. The Rancho San Diego Sheriff's Station will provide an opportunity for the public to discuss issues related to safety and security at Coffee with the Community on Thursday, October 27 from 8-10 a.m.at Butler’s Coffee House,9631 Campo Road in Casa de Oro.

EL CAJON COUNCIL SOUGHT HELP FROM COUNTY FOR POLICE ON MENTAL HEALTH CALLS IN JUNE, APPROVED BODY CAMERAS IN AUGUST

 

By Jonathan Goetz

October 2, 2016 (El Cajon) -- The shooting of a black man reportedly suffering a mental health crisis in El Cajon by police has led to protests, and police crack-downs. After an officer advanced toward Alfred Olango, gun drawn at close range, Olango allegedly pointed a vape pen, or smoking device, at the officer, who mistook it for a gun and fired the deadly shots.

El Cajon Mayor Bill Wells, a clinician and former Director of Psychiatric Intake Services and Director of Outpatient Services, voiced support and empathy for both Olango’s family and for police in the City’s carefully crafted official response.

But many may not be aware that El Cajon’s City Council has been trying to address problems with the homeless and the mentally ill for quite some time. At its June 14th 2016 meeting, the El Cajon City Council voted to join San Diego County Mental Health and the Sheriffs in the East County Homeless Outreach Team, which embeds social workers with police and travels weekly to homeless hot-spots.

DEMONSTRATIONS CONTINUE IN EL CAJON; LAW ENFORCEMENT EXPERTS OFFER OPINIONS ON SHOOTING

 

By Miriam Raftery

October 1, 2016 (El Cajon)—No arrests were made overnight as protests continued for a fourth night and into today, following the shooting of Alfred Olango by El Cajon Police on Tuesday.

Tensions remain despite video released yesterday and a photo showing Olango in a shooting stance, aiming a vaping device at Officer Richard Gonsalves, who has said he believed it to be a gun. 

VIDEO OF EL CAJON POLICE SHOOTING RELEASED

Unrest continues for fourth night, prompting business closures

By Miriam Raftery

Warning:  Graphic content in video

September 30, 2016 (El Cajon)—At a press conference in El Cajon this afternoon, authorities released two videos  in the fatal shooting of Alfred Olango, 38, by police.  The first is surveillance video from a taco shop; the second is cell phone video taken by a witness.

DEMONSTRATIONS CONTINUE OVERNIGHT IN EL CAJON: TEAR GAS DEPLOYED AS PROTEST TURNS VIOLENT

 

2 men wanted for stealing photojournalist’s $15,000 camera Wednesday night

By Miriam Raftery

September 30, 2016 (El Cajon)--Demonstrations continued overnight in El Cajon over the killing of Alfred Olango Tuesday by police.

  After receiving several 911 calls of 50-70 protesters blocking cars and breaking car windows, police declared an unlawful assembly. 10 News reports that tear gas and pepper balls were deployed by police. The station posted video of the incident and reported that protesters also knocked a motorcyclist off a motorcycle. Glass bottles were also thrown at officers. Two arrests were made, according to police.

 “A large group of demonstrators marched through the streets throughout the evening and into the early morning hours,”said Lieutenant Rob Ransweiler.

Police are also investigating theft of a $15,000 camera taken forcibly from a photojournalist.   A video viewed by 250,000 people on social media has led to identification one suspect, San Diego News Video reports.  Public help is requested to identify a second subject shown at the end of a video here: https://www.facebook.com/SDNVtv/videos/918156954956981/

OFFICER INVOLVED IN EL CAJON SHOOTING HAD BEEN DEMOTED FOR SEXUAL HARASSMENT

 

Women officers have fewer use of force incidents, but only 9% of ECPD officers are women. Could more females on the force have prevented death of Alfred Olango?

By Miriam Raftery

September 29,2016 (El Cajon)—Mayor Bill Wells has confirmed that the officer who fired the fatal shots in Tuesday’s controversial shooting of Alfred Olango was  Richard Gonsalves—the same officer embroiled in a sexual harassment scandal last year. 

Could a culture that encouraged women officers to join the force have perhaps prevented Tuesday’s tragedy, before Olango pulled out a vaping device mistaken for a gun?

Multiple studies over 40 years have shown  that women police officers  are better at defusing tense situations and have significantly lower use-of-force rates than male officers,  the Washington Post recently reported.

For example, A 2002 study by the National Center for Women & Policing of excessive force incidents in seven major city police departments found that “the average male officer is over eight and a half times more likely than his female counterpart to have an allegation of excessive force sustained against him … [and] two to three times more likely than the average female officer to have a citizen name him in a complaint of excessive force.”

But the El Cajon Police Department has long drawn criticism for tolerating sexual harassment  and other sexual misconduct by male officers toward women on the force--hardly a history conducive to attracting women seeking careers in law enforcement.

EL CAJON’S WILD WEEK: OFFICER INVOLVED SHOOTING, NUDITY BAN, PROTESTS AND PARKWAY PLAZA CLOSURE

 

Did lack of mental healthcare “PERT” team response contribute to Olango’s death? 

Suicide Help Resources included below

By Jonathan Goetz

September 29, 2016 (El Cajon) – East San Diego County’s El Cajon was rocked Tuesday with an officer involved shooting of an unarmed black man, Alfred Okwera Olango. The city has remained in the spotlight all week.  Lost amid the blitz of media coverage has been other news, including a nudity ban targeting homeless people.

In chronological order, here are the highlights and lowlights:

UNREST GROWS IN EL CAJON: MAN KILLED POINTED VAPING DEVICE AT OFFICERS,HAD CRIMINAL RECORD

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo, left, by Rebecca Williamson, during vigil at shooting sight this evening

September 28,2016 (El Cajon) –Amid mounting tensions and protests this evening,  El Cajon Police released updates in yesterday’s fatal shooting of Alfred Okwera Olango.  

The updated information reveals the Olango, an El Cajon resident, drew a vape smoking device from his pocket and pointed it at officers. The release also indicates a Psychiatric Emergency Response Team was unavailable due to being dispatched to another call.

A 10 News investigation found  Olango had a criminal record including  a 2005 arrest in Colorado as a felon in possession of a firearm—a semi-automatic pistol in the vehicle he was driving. He also pled guilty to receiving stolen property and driving under the influence in 1999, as well as selling cocain in 2001.

In this confrontation, however, Olango was unarmed.  The Ugandan refugee who came to America  after death threats to his famliy was shot and killed after his sister called officers for help due to her brother's erratic actions.

Tonight, crowds clashed with police.  While organizers of a march and vigil sought to keep the peace, some protesters reportedly threw bottles at police and chased a counter-protester wearing a Trump hat after he shouted racial slurs.

PARKWAY PLAZA EVACUATED, CAR SHOW SHUTDOWN AMID UNREST AFTER POLICE SHOOTING

 

 

By Rebecca Williamson and Miriam Raftery

Photo, left,by Rebecca Williamson: Marchers at Mollison near Broadway

September 28,2016 (El Cajon) – Parkway Plaza regional shopping center is shut down for tonight after protests spilled into the mall over yesterday’s fatal police shooting of Alfred  Olango, 38, an unarmed African-American man with mental health issues.  Marketing director Ken Gray told  ECM the mall shut down for the night on advice of police.

“ Where I work, a lot of people were crying and screaming,” Gage Miller told  East County Magazine shortly after police evacuated the Walmart store where he works and escorted everyone outside. He said around 3 p.m., “lots of people were marching in the mall and going into the movie theatre…Walmart had to put its gates down. Protesters were spraying water from water bottles all around.”

PROTESTS ERUPT IN EL CAJON; BLACK MAN SHOT BY POLICE DIES

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo, left: El Cajon Police

Photos (rest) by Robert Gehr (c)

September 28, 2016 (El Cajon)—A shooting of a mentally ill African-American man by El Cajon Police yesterday  has sparked anger among some community members, though police have released a photo suggesting the man assumed a “shooter’s stance” before he was shot and killed.

Following a press conference this morning by police, civil rights leaders spoke at a press conference calling for a federal investigation.  Marches were held downtown and a candlelight vigil is planned tonight at 6 p.m. the El Cajon Police Station forAlfred Olango, 38.

FUGITIVE ARRESTED IN EAST COUNTY MURDER CASE

 

 

Update:  The victim has been identified as Brandon Deguzman, 21.  Cause of death has been determined to be homicide by shooting,outside the victim's home. 

By Miriam Raftery

September 25, 2016 (Santee) – A fugitive wanted in connection with a deadly shooting in unincorporated El Cajon yesterday morning is now under arrest.

SDSU’S HOMELAND SECURITY PROGRAM DEVELOPS PROGRAM TO STOP ACTIVE SHOOTERS

 

Source:  Press release, SDSU Homeland Security graduate program

September 24, 2016 (San Diego) -- What can be done to stop active shooter incidents such as the one at the Washington Mall this week?  Two San Diegans who recently graduated from San Diego State University’s Homeland Security Program, have developed an innovative mobile app solution for preventing, mitigating and responding to active shooter situations. The Active Shooter Identification (ASI) application has the ability to detect a gunshot that supersedes 125 decibels.

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