La Mesa Police

POLICE AND FIRE BASKETBALL SHOWDOWN MAY 7 BENEFITS HELIX ATHLETICS

 

East County News Service

May 4, 2017 (La Mesa) – La Mesa Police and local firefighters invite you to a police and fire basketball showdown at the Helix High School gym on Sunday, May7 at 2 p.m.  Police and Fire department vehicles will also be available for tours.

POLICE, CHP JOIN STATEWIDE EFFORT TO STOP DISTRACTED DRIVING

 

East County News Service

April 7, 2017 (La Mesa) -- April is recognized as National Distracted Driving Awareness Month.  In California, the Office of Traffic Safety (OTS), the La Mesa Police Department, CHP, local law enforcement, and community partners throughout the state are working together to make the roads safer by highlighting the dangers of being distracted while driving, especially by cell phones.

LA MESA COUNCIL REFUSES GRAND JURY REQUST TO CREATE CITIZENS’ POLICE OVERSIGHT BOARD, ACCEPTS RECOMMENDATIONS ON HOMELESSNESS

By Tasha Matthews

ECM Editor Miriam Raftery also contributed to this report

August 4, 2016 (La Mesa)--Councilmember Guy McWhirter opened the La Mesa City Council meeting on Tuesday, July 26th by expressing concern for our country in the wake of recent shootings of police officers. He thanked police for their brave work helping to protect citizens—two days before two San Diego Police officers were shot, one fatally.

But the Council rejected a Grand Jury recommendation to create a police oversight board aimed at assuring that citizens’ rights are protected if officer misconduct is alleged. The Grand Jury made its recommendations to La Mesa and other local cities in a report on Citizens Oversight Boards of Police Behavior.

PHOTOS RELEASED OF AM/PM ROBBERY SUSPECT IN LA MESA

 

November 11, 2015 (La Mesa) – La Mesa Police have released surveillance photographs of the suspect who robbed the AM/PM Gas Station in La Mesa this past weekend. The suspect was armed with a rifle when he entered the store at approximately 1:25 AM on 11/07/15.

ARMED ROBBERY AT LA MESA AM/PM GAS STATION

 

East County News Service

November 7, 2015 (La Mesa) – A man armed with a rifle similar to an assault weapon entered the AM/PM gas station at 3775 Massachusetts Avenue in La Mesa at 1:25 a.m. and demanded cash.  After the clerk turned over money, the suspect left on foot and was last seen running eastbound on Waite Drive, according to La Mesa Police.

Officers from La Mesa Police Department searched the surrounding areas with assistance from the San Diego Police Department helicopter ABLE and a San Diego Sheriff’s Department canine team, but were unable to locate the suspect.

The suspect is described as a light-skinned black male adult in his 20s, approximately 5’9” tall, with a thin build. He was wearing a blue and gray hooded sweatshirt, blue jeans, and a baseball cap. The suspect also wore dark sunglasses and had the hood of his sweatshirt up over his head.

SNAKES ALIVE! MOM FINDS 8-FOOT BOA IN LA MESA HOME

 

 

Photo, left to right:  Heartland & Rescue Firefighter/Paramedic Neil Carter, Captain Tom Brown, and Firefighter/Paramedic Sean Finley. 

By Miriam Raftery

October 16, 2015 (La Mesa) – A woman who recently moved into a rental home at 7000 Colony Drive in La Mesa with her children got a big surprise on Saturday. Walking out of the family’s bedroom, she found a huge snake in the kitchen.

The startled mother called 9-1-1 and barricaded herself in the bedroom with her children while waiting for help to arrive. Heartland Fire & Rescue in La Mesa, along with La Mesa Police and the El Cajon Animal Control soon came to the rescue.

MISSING TEEN, 14, LAST SEEN IN LA MESA FRIDAY NIGHT

 

Update Oct. 6, 2015 - La Mesa Police report that this missing juvenile has been found with friends in Imperial Beach and has been returned to her family.

Update Oct. 4, 2015 1 p.m. - Olivia's mother confirms that a friend received an Instragram message that appears to be from Olivia.  The message indicates she is safe but does not want to come home.  It is not certain whether the message was sent by Olivia or possibly by someone with access to her account.

East County News Service

October 4, 2015 (La Mesa) – Public help is sought to locate Olivia Miller, 14, A Guatay resident who vanished Friday night in La Mesa. She was last seen at 7 p.m. at the Journey Community Church at 8363 Center Drive.

According to La Mesa Police dispatch, Olivia is 5 feet 1 inch tall, weighs 110 pounds, has black hair and green eyes. She was last seen wearing a white baseball cap, black shirt and black pants. She may also have been wearing a white cardigan and carrying a brown backpack, her mother has advised East County Magazine.

Olivia’s mother, Sherrie Jockell, says Olivia had a picnic dinner with family at the church before services.  An assistant teacher in a class at church, Olivia never made it to class after dinner.  Family realized she was missing after the service, when she did not return to their car.  Olivia made no mention of going anywhere after church to her friends or family.

VEHICLES SHOT IN LA MESA

 

By Miriam Raftery

September 10, 2015 (La Mesa) – La Mesa Police received a call at 10:06 p.m. last night reporting shots fired in the 4400 block of Parks Avenue, only a block from La Mesa Dale Elementary School.   

Responding officers “rolled out to the scene and found three cars with bullet holes,” Sergeant Brian Stoney told East County Magazine.

Thus far police have no suspect and no motive. 

ARMED ROBBERY AT WALMART IN GROSSMONT CENTER POLICE SEEK SUSPECT WEARING ANGELS CAP

 

East County News Service

August 27, 2015 (La Mesa)—La Mesa Police seek public help to locate Hispanic male suspect who robbed the WalMart store’s garden center in Grossmont Center at gunpoint on August 24 at 4:10 p.m.

PEDESTRIANS ROBBED AT GUNPOINT IN LA MESA

East County News Service

June 28, 2015 (La Mesa)--Two pedestrians in the 4300 block of Rosebud Lane in La Mesa were robbed at gunpoint at 12:50 this morning by a suspect armed with a handgun.

The unknown suspect approached the male and female victim as they were standing on the sidewalk. The suspect produced a silver semi-automatic handgun and demanded the victims’ money and cell phones. After the victims complied, the suspect ran away southbound on Rosebud Lane.

CHIEF ED ACEVES PASSES THE BATON AND WALKS INTO RETIREMENT

By Bonnie Baranoff

April 12, 2015 (La Mesa) -- On Tuesday, April 14 at 2 p.m., 30-year La Mesa Police Department veteran and outgoing Police Chief Ed Aceves will “walk out” in what has become a traditional retirement ceremony at the La Mesa Police Department. Though officially retired in December 2014, he stayed on until his replacement, Chief Walter Vasquez, had a week to transition into the job.

In an ECM exclusive, Aceves shares how he got into law enforcement, how technology and communications have changed the field, his most memorable moments, and his plans for the future.

LA MESA SELECTS A NEW POLICE CHIEF

 

East County News Service

March 13, 2015 (La Mesa)--La Mesa City Manager Dave Witt has announced the selection of 28 ½ year City of San Diego Police Department veteran Walter (Walt) Vasquez, as the City’s new Chief of Police.

Witt said that Vasquez competed against candidates from outside the organization and proved that he has exceptional qualities that will help him succeed in his new position. Vasquez is currently serving as Assistant Chief of Police with the City of San Diego overseeing the Canine Unit, SWAT, Communications Division, Information Services, Property Room, and the Chief’s Community Advisory Boards. Vasquez will replace La Mesa Chief of Police Ed Aceves, who retired in December 2014 after 30 years of service.

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CHAMBER’S “CABARET” EVENT SHINES SPOTLIGHT ON LOCAL HEROES

 

By Miriam Raftery

February 26, 2015 (La Mesa)—The La Mesa Chamber of Commerce celebrated the accomplishments of local police, fire, medical response and senior volunteers at its annual “Salute to Heroes” banquet on February 18th at the Town and Country Hotel’s Golden Ballroom. 

The event also featured installation of officers and a “Come to the Cabaret” theme complete with New York cabaret singer Devlin, pianist Chris Drury, and a cabaret cake cooked up by Grove Pastry Shop.

This year’s honorees were:

SERIAL BURGLARY SUSPECTS BUSTED

 

East County News Service

February 20, 2015 (San Diego’s East County) – Two men suspected of a series of 15 commercial burglaries in La Mesa from are under arrest.  Both are also connected to burglaries in El Cajon and Oceanside, according to a statement issued by La Mesa Police.

LA MESA POLICE INVESTIGATE BEATING OF TROLLEY RIDER BY MTS SECURITY EMPLOYEES

 

 

View video of beating (warning, disturbing content):  http://www.10news.com/news/investigations/video-security-officers-beat-man-on-trolley

By Miriam Raftery

August 22, 2014 (La Mesa) – Two security officers for Metropolitan Transit System have been suspended after security video revealed the officers knocking a man across the aisle and then beating him for nearly seven minutes, 10 News reports.  10 News obtained the video through a public records request after receiving a complaint from Lynn Riggs, a passenger who witnessed the beating aboard the trolley in La Mesa on August 18. 

“He was not trying to get away, he was just trying to avoid getting further injured,” she said.  “I just watched them beat him and beat him and beat him with the baton.”  At one point, officers paused, then began violently beating the man again, seemingly without provocation.  The witness called the behavior “out of control.”

LA MESA POLICE ARREST SDPD OFFICER FOR DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AGAINST HIS WIFE

 

 

April 23, 2014 (La Mesa) – San Diego Police Officer Gilbert Anthony Lorenzo has been arrested by La Mesa Police yesterday for felony domestic violence against his wife. La Mesa Police Chief Matt Nicholas said that the victim did not require medical attention.

Officer Lorenzo, who has worked for SDPD for seven years, was released on $50,000 bail and has been suspended from duty, SDPD Chief Shelley Zimmerman said.

LA MESA WOMAN STABS BOYFRIEND AFTER BEING CHOKED, POLICE SAY

 

March 24, 2014 (La Mesa)--On March 24 at 5:19 am, La Mesa Police were notified by Grossmont Hospital staff that a stab victim had just been brought into the hospital. Minutes before the hospital report, La Mesa Police received reports of a disturbance at a residence in the 3800 block of Murray Hill Drive, La Mesa.  When officers arrived on Murray Hill, they determined the two incidents were related and the stabbing was believed to be in self defense.

SUSPECT ARRESTED FOR KIDNAPPING AFTER VICTIM ALERTED LA MESA POLICE

 

February 1, 2014 (La Mesa)—After receiving a call from a male victim stating he was being held against his will in a black Ford Expedition vehicle traveling west on University Avenue near Park Avenue, La Mesa Police responded. The victim gave location updates to a police dispatcher, presenting he was talking to a friend, and reported that the suspect had a gun.

SHOPPER SURPRISES INTRUDER IN VEHICLE AT GROSSMONT CENTER

 

October 13, 2013 (La Mesa) – A shopper returning to his Ford Ranger  at 7:32 p.m. last night saw a man inside the vehicle going through belongings in the parking lot at Grossmont Center. 

The victim confronted the intruder, who fled.  An officer responding near Walmart pursued the suspect on foot and apprehended him. Lance Rodgers of El Cajon, 31, was booked into County jail on charges or burglary, possession of burglary tools, and resisting arrest.

SUSPECT ARRESTED FOR ASSAULTING LA MESA POLICE OFFICER

 

 

September 15, 2013 (La Mesa) –Loren Montoya, 32, of Spring Valley has been arrested for assaulting a La Mesa Police officer responding to a call reporting a fight in the 5600 block of Jackson Drive shortly before 4 p.m. yesterday.

According to Police, when officers arrived on scene, the suspect refused to comply with commands and rushed at one officer. A taser was deployed, but the suspect continued to fight with officers. During the struggle, the suspect reportedly grabbed onto and attempted to remove the officer’s firearm from the holster.

EL CAJON, LA MESA POLICE DEPARTMENTS TO PARTICIPATE IN NATIONAL NIGHT OUT AGAINST CRIME ON AUGUST 6

 

August 1, 2013 (San Diego's East County) – On Tuesday, August 6, the El Cajon Police Department will be holding a National Night Out community event in the parking lot of the El Cajon Police Station located at 100 Civic Center Way from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m.  Enjoy a wide variety of booths and displays from numerous organizations offering health and safety information with a special emphasis on ways you can better protect your family, your home and your vehicle.  Emergency vehicles will be on display and there will be a K-9 demonstration. For more information, please call (619) 579-4227.

MAN SLASHED IN FACE WITH KNIFE IN LA MESA

 

July 15, 2013 (La Mesa)—La Mesa Police responded to a 9-1-1 call on July 12 at 7:40 p.m. in the 7400 block of Colony Drive. A witness reported that a suspect slashed the face of a victim with a knife and then fled west through the residential complex.

Officers arrived on scene and located the victim on the ground with a laceration to his nose and face. The 50-year-old victim was transported to the hospital with wounds that were not life threatening.

Officers searched the area with assistance from San Diego Sheriff’s helicopter ASTREA and El Cajon Police Department canine units, but were unable to locate the suspect. The suspect is described as a white man in his 40s or 50s, between 5’4 and 5’6 tall, approximately 160 pounds, with “salt and pepper” hair. He was wearing a t-shirt and brown shorts and carried a large black trash bag when he fled the scene.

SCHOOL BURGLARS LEARN A LESSON IN LA MESA

 

June 10, 2013 (La Mesa) – Crime didn’t pay for a pair of burglars caught fleeing the scene of a break-in at Vista La Mesa Academy.  On June 6 at 2:28 a.m., La Mesa Police responded to an alarm activation at the elementary school, located at 3900 Violet Street.  As officers arrived, they heard glass breaking inside.  More officers, including a canine team, responded.

Two suspects were seen carrying computer equipment out of the school and fleeing south through the playground area. Both were taken into custody as they jumped a fence at the south end of the school grounds. The property taken was recovered.

MAN IN SPIDERMAN MASK ROBS GAS STATION AT GUNPOINT, KICKS CUSTOMER

 

May 24, 2013 (La Mesa) –La Mesa Police responded to a robbery report at 1:24 a.m. at the USA gas station in the 7900 block of University.  A suspect wearing a Spiderman mask pulled a black, semi-automatic pistol out and told a customer to lie on the floor, then began kicking the customer, according to police.

The suspect demanded money from the clerk.  The masked man was last seen running northbound on La Mesa Boulevard. The loss was approximately $300 and the clerk was not injured. The male customer left on a bicycle after the robbery and before police arrived; he has not been located.

LA MESA POLICE OFFICER INJURED, DRAGGED BY RUNAWAY SUSPECT VEHICLE

 

May 8, 2013 (La Mesa) – La Mesa Police Sergeant Bret Richards was injured early this morning when a stolen vehicle abandoned following a pursuit rolled backward, dragging the officer over 50 feet down Maryland Avenue.  Police still seek the suspect, who was not apprehended.

EMPLOYEES INJURED IN ROBBERY AT LIQUOR STORE IN LA MESA

 

April 28, 2013 (La Mesa) --  Responding to a report of a fight last night in the 5900 block of Severin Drive, La Mesa Police officers arrived and found that the fight was actually an altercation between liquor store employees and suspects who reportedly stole alcohol. The employees chased the four suspects, two men and two women, out of the store and a fight ensued.

Both employees were hit in the face by the two male suspects and sustained bruising, but refused medical attention. The loss was a bottle of alcohol.

SUSPECTS AT LARGE AFTER ROBBERY OF LOS PIÑOS TACO SHOP IN LA MESA





April 25, 2013 (La  Mesa)—Three robbers, one armed with a handgun, held up the Los Piños Taco Shop at 5660 Lake Murray Boulevard in La Mesa last night at approximately 9:52 p.m. They remain at large despite a search by the Sheriff’s ASTREA helicopter and a canine unit.

All three are described as African-American men in their late teens or early 20s, wearing bandanas over their faces.  Each was approximately 5’10 and weighs around 165 pounds.  One wore eye glasses and another had a dark gray hooded sweatshirt. All wore dark clothing.

LA MESA POLICE SAY "NO" TO SPEEDERS

March 2, 2013 (La Mesa) – The La Mesa Police Department, in an effort to keep everyone safe, was aggressively enforcing the state’s speed laws during the fourth “Traffic Safety Enforcement Program” operation, which took place Saturday February 23, 2013. The program relies on heavy enforcement and public education as a means to help reduce deaths and injuries on our local roadways.

When caught speeding, driver’s often ask for just a verbal warning.  Though sometimes appropriate based on the overall circumstances, La Mesa Police Officers said “no” to that request at least 27 times and issued them speeding tickets during Saturday’s operation.  One speeding driver was also driving on a suspended driver’s license, and his vehicle was impounded. 

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