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Dinner at Kiku Sushi


 
Dinner at Kiki Sushi, in the Huntington Oaks shopping center. Got the Geisha Combo (8 pieces of Sushi) for $15.99 and a medium beer for $4.99. It came with a little salad,  a bowl of miso soup, and a tiny scoop of ice cream for desert. The fish was very fresh and good. 

- Brad Haugaard 

Monrovia to Offer CPR Training


Monrovia Fire & Rescue will provide free hands-only CPR training on Sidewalk CPR Day, Thursday, June 1, at Library Park (321 S. Myrtle Ave.), from 8 a.m. to noon Last year, more than 17,000 people in Southern California learned how to save a life in just five minutes with a quick lesson from local firefighters and medical professionals through the coordinated LA County- wide Sidewalk CPR Day program.

"Thanks to easy access to training, Citizen CPR is rapidly growing as a way to empower bystanders to save a life when someone suffers sudden cardiac arrest," said Captain Chris Huson. "We are glad to team up with the Los Angeles County Emergency Medical Services Agency and the American Heart Association to bring Sidewalk CPR to our local community. With 80 percent of all cardiac arrests occurring at home, we need to help family and friends learn how to double or triple their loved one's chance of survival."

Learning hands-only CPR helps local emergency responders by focusing on the first few critical minutes following a cardiac arrest.  Since the lungs and blood contain only enough oxygen to keep vital organs healthy for that amount of time, bystanders become heroes until emergency responders arrive on scene. With each chest compression using hands-only CPR, ordinary citizens can easily provide the ongoing blood flow needed to give the patient a much better chance of survival once responders arrive.

Once trained, citizens are encouraged to download the PulsePoint app, which was activated in Los Angeles County last August. More than 33,000 CPR-trained citizens have downloaded this lifesaving app to receive notifications that someone nearby is in need of CPR.  To learn more, visit the PulsePoint Foundation website at www.pulsepoint.org.

Only 32 percent of victims receive CPR from a bystander. Don't be a bystander in a cardiac emergency, be a lifesaver. For more information about this upcoming training, contact Captain Chris Huson at 256-8119 or chuson@ci.monrovia.ca.us.

Source: City of Monrovia press release

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Police: Car Is Stolen, Recovered, Then It Burns; Student Doesn't Have Gun; Under the Influence


[Monrovia Police activities from the Police Department's Neighborhood Watch Report for April 24-26. - Brad Haugaard]

During the last seven-day period, the Police Department handled 453 service events, resulting in 76 investigations.

Theft – Suspect Arrested
April 24 at 1:11 p.m., a theft was reported at a business in the 700 block of E. Huntington Drive. The suspect entered the business, selected merchandise and fled on a bicycle without paying for the merchandise. Officers located the suspect a short distance away. The investigation revealed the suspect was on parole and he admitted to the theft. The suspect was arrested and is being held pending a court appearance.

Wanted Person – Suspect Arrested
April 24 at 2:33 p.m., an officer was on patrol in the 100 Block of S. Primrose when he recognized a subject who he knew had an active felony WANT for his arrest. The officer made contact with the suspect and arrested him without incident. He was held pending his court appearance.

Warrant – Suspect Arrested
April 24 at 2:38 p.m., an officer was dispatched to the 200 block of S. Myrtle regarding subjects loitering near the park. The officer recognized one of the subjects and knew he had outstanding warrant. A computer check confirmed an outstanding bench warrant for his arrest. The suspect was arrested and taken into custody. He is being held pending his court appearance.

Residential Burglary
April 24 at 4:38 p.m., a residential burglary was reported in the 200 block of S. Myrtle. The home was burglarized while the victims were away for the day. The suspects forced entry through a back window and ransacked the home. Jewelry and miscellaneous property was taken. The investigation is continuing.

Under Influence of a Controlled Substance – Suspect Arrested
April 24 at 7:48 p.m., an officer was dispatched to the 400 block of S. Myrtle regarding a male subject in his 20s, lying in the street. When the officer arrived, the subject jumped up and ran. Additional units responded to the area and the suspect was apprehended in an alley in the 100 block of W. Lemon. The suspect was arrested for being under the influence of a controlled substance.

Theft of Purse
April 24 at 9:05 p.m., a theft of a purse was reported at a business in the 100 block of W. Foothill. An elderly female victim was shopping for approximately one hour when she realized her purse was missing from her shopping cart. The victim believes someone removed her purse from her cart while she was shopping. The investigation is continuing.

Stolen Vehicle Recovered / Fire
April 24 at 9:15 p.m., an officer responded to California and Duarte regarding a vehicle on fire. Duarte Sheriffs deputies arrived on scene prior. A check of the license plate revealed the vehicle was reported stolen out of San Bernardino. The driver of the vehicle was the registered owner, who had reported his vehicle stolen on April 1. He saw his vehicle at a business in San Bernardino that day and took his vehicle. He did not call San Bernardino Police Department to let them know he recovered his vehicle. He said he was driving on the 210 Freeway when his front tire started smoking. He exited Mountain and drove to Duarte Road, where the vehicle caught on fire.

Felony Vandalism
April 25 at 3:43 a.m., a vandalism incident was reported in the 800 block of W. Olive. The victim reported that someone shattered the windows on his vehicle. A tall subject was seen throwing bricks through the windows and running east on Olive. The investigation is continuing.

Under the Influence – Suspect Arrested
April 25 at 9:37 a.m., a male subject was reported huffing something from a bag in the 600 block of W. Myrtle. Officers arrived and detained the subject. The investigation revealed the suspect was inhaling the propellant gas from an aerosol can, and he was under the influence. The suspect was issued a citation and taken to a hospital for medical treatment.

Vehicle Burglary
April 25 at 1:22 p.m., an officer was dispatched to the 800 block of Oceanview regarding a vehicle burglary. The victim called to report that she parked and locked her vehicle and returned later to find someone had burglarized it. Miscellaneous items were taken and the investigation is continuing.

Fight in Progress
April 25 at 10:42 p.m., dispatch received several calls reporting a fight in progress in the 800 block of W. Olive. Prior to police arrival, three subjects jumped into a white Lexus and fled east on Olive. Officers stopped the vehicle in the 700 block of W. Walnut. One of the subjects inside the vehicle was injured in the fight and was treated by Monrovia Fire Department paramedics. All three subjects were uncooperative with police. Officers did not locate the other subjects involved in the fight. The incident does not appear to be gang related.

Under the Influence of a Controlled Substance – Suspect Arrested
April 26 at 7:18 a.m., officers responded to the report of suspicious drug activity in the 400 block of W. Huntington. The officers arrived and contacted the person in question. After speaking with the subject, it was determined he was under the influence of a controlled substance. He was arrested and held for a sobering period.

Suspicious Activity Reported
April 26 at 7:49 a.m., a citizen called police and reported seeing a male juvenile exit a vehicle with a handgun. The juvenile appeared to be a student at Monrovia High School. Officers responded and located the unoccupied vehicle. The registered owner of the vehicle was a new student at the high school. The student was located in a classroom and the school was placed on soft alert; staff is notified to keep students in class and no change of class or bells are activated. The student was removed from class and questioned. Officers learned he had a brother in another class. The sibling was located and questioned. The juveniles’ backpacks, vehicle and lockers were searched and no weapons were found. Police then contacted the parents and confirmed there was no way they could have any weapons.

Monrovia Firefighters Pancake Breakfast - Demonstrations and More ...


Monrovia Firefighers' Pancake Breakfast May 13 from 7-11 a.m. at Fire Station 101, 141 E. Lemon. Jr. Firefighter Challenge, displays, bounce house, live demonstrations. Proceeds benefit Monrovia charities. For more information call 256-8181.

- Brad Haugaard

Help Package Cookies for Children With Illnesses



Help package cookies to be delivered to children in homes and hospitals at the Butterfly Kisses Foundation First Annual "Cookies of Love" Day on April 30 and May 1 at St. Luke's Episcopal Church at the corner of Foothill Blvd. and California Ave. This new foundation is based in Monrovia. Contact the foundation at 824-1416 or at caring@butterflykissesfoundation.com to let them know the time, day, and number of people in your party. Foundation President and Executive Director Kelly Quezada writes: "Since I began my own cookie company in 2012, I have always wanted to find a way to help families and their children who are dealing with critical and ongoing illness." More about the foundation: http://www.butterflykissesfoundation.com/

City Letter to Monrovia Community


An Open Letter to the Monrovia Community

April 25, 2017

As you may have heard by now, on the evening of Saturday, April 22, 2017, there was a violent and tragic shooting at 134 West Cypress Street in Monrovia.  The incident left one 18-year-old Monrovia resident dead, and another 17-year-old resident of unincorporated Monrovia in critical condition.  Additionally, we are aware at this time that both of the shooting victims were Monrovia Unified School District students, and our thoughts and prayers are with their families at this time.

Given the active investigation that is ongoing, there are few details about the shooting that the City can share.  However, we are aware that this violent incident has inspired a great deal of speculation, which has resulted in the spread of inaccurate information being distributed in the news and across social media about gang crimes occurring in our City and region.  To that end, we wanted to provide some factual information about the context for this incident and details about the City’s substantial and continuing efforts to curb gang violence in our community.

Regarding the most recent shooting, we do know that a Hispanic male in his early to mid-20s is the suspected shooter that law enforcement authorities are currently looking for.  It appears that the shooter entered the rear garage located at 134 West Cypress Street through a back alley on the evening of April 22, 2017, at around 11:30 p.m.  Upon his entrance, the suspected shooter encountered three individuals gathered in the garage, including the two Hispanic males and one Hispanic female.  It is unknown at this time what the suspected shooter’s motivations were.

However, after a brief verbal exchange, the suspect proceeded to open fire and shot the two male victims, killing one individual and injuring the other.  After opening fire, the suspected shooter fled the scene on foot into the alley located at the rear of the residence.  Homicide investigators from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department are now investigating the case, which is the standard protocol for most murder investigations in our region because of the sophisticated tools and resources available at the County.

We recognize that any shooting causes real and legitimate fear in the community.  However, as news of this recent incident has been shared, unrestrained speculation has resulted in reports that Monrovia has a significant gang problem.  Such accounts are simply inaccurate.  In reality, our community has very little gang activity, due primarily to proactive gang violence reduction efforts that the City has instituted during the past 10 years.  As a result, there are virtually no gang members living in Monrovia today.

Back in 2007, Monrovia, Duarte, and the surrounding unincorporated Los Angeles County areas did experience a significant spike in gang violence and hundreds of gang members lived in the region.  Much of the gang activity at that time was race-based, with significant conflicts between African American and Hispanic gangs.  When confronted with this issue, Monrovia began working to remove criminal street gang members from our community.  One of the City’s most effective measures was implementation of a preliminary gang injunction in 2009, which was eventually expanded to serve as a permanent injunction against the gangs in 2010.  The injunction is still in place today and serves as a critical tool in the City’s efforts to identify and remove gang members from our community.

In addition to the gang injunction, the City has also worked for years alongside our neighborhood leaders to develop strategies to eliminate gang elements from Monrovia.  For example, our Police Department has coordinated with community members to put pressure on landlords who rent to criminals, and in every case we have pursued, that pressure from residents and the City resulted in landlords evicting criminal tenants.  Our Police Department staff have also assisted landlords in their efforts to evict criminal tenants by appearing in court to testify in contested evictions, while also providing landlords with information about ways to rent to responsible individuals.

After years of hard work, we have seen results here in Monrovia.  Today, there are less than 10 gang members who live in our community, and because of our efforts, we have seen a major drop in both violent crime and gang crime in Monrovia during the past decade.

Unfortunately, the rest of our region has not been as proactive in working to remove gang members from their communities.  For example, Duarte did not participate in the gang injunction.  This means that the Hispanic gang and the Crip gang in Duarte have been unaffected by our injunction.
Also, while Los Angeles County did participate in the injunction (which applies to gang members living in the unincorporated areas surrounding Monrovia and Duarte), the County does not have the same type of focused community policing programs that we have in Monrovia, and they have not had the same success that we have had in removing gang members from the unincorporated areas surrounding our City.

These regional factors have resulted in many gang members still living in the areas to the south and to the east of Monrovia.  And beginning in 2016, similar to the violence we saw in 2007, gang activity has erupted in our region.  The gang violence has primarily been between the Crip gang in the unincorporated areas surrounding Duarte / Monrovia, the Hispanic gang in Duarte, and a Blood gang in Pasadena.  And there have been multiple gang related shootings and homicides in Duarte, Pasadena, and the unincorporated Los Angeles County areas.

Throughout this recent surge in gang activity, Monrovia has avoided most of the violence because we have so few gang members living in our community.  In fact, the City experienced very little gang crime in 2016.  However, the reality is that gang members living in the region drive through Monrovia, visit friends / family in our City, and shop at our businesses.  These factors, coupled with the few gang members who still live in town, leaves open the possibility that gang violence may occur here in Monrovia.

To that end, in addition to the most recent shooting we experienced on April 22, 2017, there have been three other recent instances of violent activity in Monrovia, which include:

1. On February 9, 2017, a male Hispanic gang member shot at a subject who was not a gang member in the 100 block of Los Angeles Street.  Fortunately, the victim was not hit and Monrovia Police Officers quickly apprehended the shooter, along with two accomplices.  In addition, City investigators were able to locate the gun that was used in the shooting, and the suspect is now awaiting trial.  It is important to note that the shooter had been convicted of assault with a deadly weapon in Ontario, California in 2015.  Because of California’s early prisoner release policies, he was out of prison in 9 months and had come to visit a friend in Monrovia when he committed another assault, this time with a handgun.

2. On March 29, 2017, a subject was at a store in the 400 block of East Duarte road when he was shot at by a gang member while sitting in his vehicle.  The victim, who was hit, fled the scene to his residence in the unincorporated area of Duarte, where his family then called for help.  This was a case where rival gang members from areas outside the City were involved in a shooting at a business in Monrovia.  The victim will survive his injuries and the investigation is ongoing.

3. On April 7, 2017, a drive by shooting occurred in the 100 block of East Los Angeles Street.  During the incident, no one was hit and no one was injured.  The shooting took place at a residence where Crip gang members associate, and the investigation is continuing.  At this time, it has not yet been determined if the shooting was gang related or if the incident was provoked because of a drug related deal.  Furthermore, while the Monrovia Police Department has been aware of the issues at this location, we have been unable to evict the residents because they own the home.  However, the City has taken proactive measures in an attempt to resolve the issues at this problem address, including the installation of high definition surveillance cameras that monitor the entire street on a 24/7 basis.

It is always unacceptable when a shooting occurs in town, and last weekend’s shooting that resulted in the death of a Monrovia resident is a tragedy that will be thoroughly investigated.  As we move forward, additional public information will be released when possible.  However, as the process unfolds, we did want to make the community aware that there is a lot of inaccurate information about the shooting incident that is being spread on social media, including statements made that the second victim had died, which is not true.

There are also many inaccurate sentiments being shared that Monrovia is centrally involved in the regional gang violence that has been occurring since 2016.  We have outlined in this correspondence all of the possible recent gang-related shooting incidents that have occurred in Monrovia.  While it is true that gang activity spills into our City at times, the facts illustrate that gang violence is primarily originating from other areas where Monrovia has no jurisdiction.  Furthermore, with regard to the latest April 22, 2017, shooting incident, it has yet to be determined if the matter is even gang related.

While social media can be a helpful way to share accurate information, it also frequently causes the spread of false information, as has been the case recently.

Here in our Monrovia, we have taken, and we continue to take, great efforts to reduce gang violence.

And our efforts have produced real results.  As the chart below illustrates, violent gang crime in Monrovia has been significantly reduced over the years.



As we have worked together over the past ten years, Monrovia was able to reduce the number of gang members living in our community to make our City a safer place.

As we continue working together as a community, all of us here at the City are confident that we will be able to solve the real public safety issues that Monrovia faces today.

If you have any questions regarding this matter, please feel free to contact City Manager Oliver Chi (626-932-5501, ochi@ci.monrovia.ca.us) or Police Chief Jim Hunt (626-256-8095, jhunt@monrovia.laclen.org).

Source: City of Monrovia

- Brad Haugaard

Concern Over Unity Center Moving to World Vision Building; $300 - Easy as Pie


~ A Planning Commission decision to grant a conditional use permit for Foothill Unity Center to purchase the World Vision building on Chestnut has been appealed to the city council. Some neighbors expressed concerns that it could cause increased traffic, that it will encourage the homeless to loiter in the area, and that there could be an increase in shopping carts in the area.

~ Sign up for the pie eating contest taking place at 5 p.m. on Saturday, May 20, as part of Monrovia Days. The Public Services Department is looking for teams of 5 people. The team that can finish eating their pies first (without the use of their hands) will win a $300 cash prize.  The second-place team will win $150, and the third-place team will take home $50. Here's the application form: https://goo.gl/5NZgjK

Update from City Manager Oliver Chi: "I was writing tonight to let you know about a correction regarding the Foothill Unity Center!  In our last City Manager’s Update, I incorrectly indicated that an appeal had been made of the Planning Commission decision to grant the Foothill Unity Center a conditional use permit to move to 790 West Chestnut Avenue.  I was informed by staff today that although there were individuals who indicated their intention to appeal the decision, ultimately, there was no formal appeal filed.  Therefore, the Planning Commission decision to grant a CUP allowing the Foothill Unity Center to move will stand, and the City is looking forward to working with the Foothill Unity Center on coordinating their move to the new facility, which will certainly enhance the ability of the Foothill Unity Center to continue making a positive impact here in Monrovia"

- Brad Haugaard

Canyon Oaks High Mourns Loss of Classmate Oscar Garcia


Monrovia's Canyon Oaks High School mourns the killing of classmate Oscar Garcia in a Saturday night shooting. A video report: https://goo.gl/YRq0mU

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Police: Homicide; Bicyclists Injured; New Phone Scam; Etc.


[Monrovia Police activities from the Police Department's Neighborhood Watch Report for April 20-23. - Brad Haugaard]

Following are the weekend’s highlighted issues and events.

Injury Traffic Collision
April 20 at 8:47 p.m., a traffic collision was reported in the 2000 block of S. Myrtle. A subject was riding a bicycle heading east across Myrtle without the proper lighting equipment. A vehicle traveling north on Myrtle did not see the subject and struck his front tire, causing the bicyclist to fall and hit his head. The bicyclist was taken to the hospital for treatment.

Parking Problem / Warrant – Suspect Arrested
April 21 at 9:52 a.m., officers responded to the report of a parking problem in the 1300 block of Orange Avenue and discovered several subjects inside the vehicle. They contacted the subjects and discovered one was semi-unconscious and required medical attention. A second subject had a warrant. The person with the warrant was arrested and the person needing medical attention was treated by Monrovia Fire Department and taken to the hospital.

Vehicle Burglary
April 21 at 4:00 p.m., a vehicle burglary was reported in the 800 block of Genoa. The victim reported that his truck had been parked on the street in front of his residence overnight. When he returned to his vehicle the next afternoon, he saw the locked tool rack had been pried open and several of his tools were missing. The investigation is continuing.

New Phone Scam
April 21, police dispatch received three calls reporting a new phone scam. The suspects are calling residents and claiming to be affiliated with the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department. They are informing people that if they don't arrange to have gift cards delivered to a particular location, deputies will come to their residence and arrest them. All three callers said LASD Alta Dena was listed on the caller ID from the suspects. None of the callers sent gift cards.

Traffic Collision / Driving Under the Influence – Suspect Arrested
April 22 at 1:17 a.m., an officer was dispatched to a traffic collision in the 700 block of W. Huntington. A driver was traveling west on Huntington in the number two lane and he claimed to have fallen asleep. He rear-ended a semi-truck that was in the left lane of westbound Huntington, turning right onto the freeway. The investigation determined the driver was driving under the influence. The driver was arrested.

Family Disturbance / Warrant – Suspect Arrested
April 22 at 8:27 a.m., officers responded to a residence in the 500 block of Parkrose Avenue to investigate a disturbance between a father and his adult son. During the course of the investigation, the officers discovered the adult son had an outstanding warrant. He was arrested and taken into custody.

Hit & Run Traffic Collision
April 22 at 12:00 p.m., the victim called police to report a hit and run traffic collision in the 200 block of W. Cypress. The victim parked his vehicle on the street in front of his residence. When he returned to his vehicle, he saw it had been side-swiped. The incident occurred sometime between 12:45 a.m. and 12:00 p.m. The investigation is continuing.

Public Assist
April 22 at 5:47 p.m., three male adults decided to ride electric unicycles from Azusa to Monrovia, across the foothills. One of the subjects became dehydrated. He was exhausted and could not continue, so another subject rode to Canyon Park to get help. He told the Monrovia Fire Department staff that his friends were approximately one hour into the foothills. The Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department and Sierra Madre Search and Rescue took the lead and the subjects were found at approximately 10:00 p.m.

Hit & Run Traffic Collision / Driving Under the Influence – Suspect Arrested
April 22 at 10:06 p.m., a traffic collision involving a vehicle versus bicyclist was reported at Mayflower and Colorado. The driver of the vehicle fled. Officers responded and conducted an area search. They located the suspect vehicle as the driver was parking in the northern part of the city. Officers conducted an investigation and concluded the driver was under the influence of alcohol. He was arrested and taken into custody. A passenger in the vehicle confirmed they had hit a bicyclist. The bicyclist sustained only minor scratches.

Homicide
April 22 at 11:35 p.m., officers responded to the 100 block of W. Cypress on a call of shots heard. Officers found two male victims with gunshot wounds inside a rear garage. One victim was pronounced dead at the scene by paramedics. The second victim, a 17 year old, was taken to the hospital in critical condition. The suspect is described as a male in his 20s, who fled the scene on foot. The Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department Homicide Bureau was asked to come conduct the investigation.

Domestic Violence – Suspect Arrested
April 23 at 11:49 a.m., a domestic violence incident was reported in the 200 block of N. Alta Vista. A male and female were involved in a verbal argument that turned physical. The male battered and strangled the female, causing visible injuries. The subjects are not married, but have several children together. The suspect was arrested and is being held pending his court appearance.

Possession of a Controlled Substance – Suspect Arrested
April 23 at 10:30 p.m., officers observed a female subject sleeping near some bushes at Myrtle and Cherry, and they stopped to check on her to see if she was okay. She was found to have drugs in her possession and was arrested.

Oscar Garcia Was Victim in Saturday Night Shooting in Monrovia


The 18-year-old man who was shot and killed late Saturday night has been identified as Oscar Garcia, who attended Canyon Oaks High School. https://goo.gl/e0FguC . if you have any information that could help the investigation, please contact the Sheriff's Department's homicide bureau at (323) 890-5500. You can also leave at tip by calling Crime Stoppers at (800) 222-8477.

- Brad Haugaard

Man Shot and Killed and Juvenile Injured in Monrovia Saturday Night


An adult man was shot and killed and a juvenile was shot and wounded late Saturday night on West Cypress, just off Myrtle. https://goo.gl/g9apxr

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia's Hippie Bots Go to Netherlands; Remembering Victims of Genocide


At its next meeting, on April 26, the Monrovia Board of Education will consider ...

~ Approving an extended field trip for the Clifton Middle School robotics team, the Hippie Bots, from May 13-23 to compete in the FTC Dutch Open Robotics Tournament. The cost, $12,500, will be entirely paid by donations. Best wishes, Hippie Bots!

~ Approving a resolution, "In Remembrance of Those Lost to Genocide and Man's Inhumanity to Man," which will commemorate "the Armenian Genocide, the Holocaust, the Rwandan Genocide, and the atrocities perpetrated by ISIL against religious and ethnic minorities in Iraq and Syria," among others. April 24 marks the 102nd commemoration of the Armenian Genocide.

- Brad Haugaard

Dinner at Black Angus


 
Dinner at Black Angus, on Huntington. Got the 3/4 pound prime rib with baked potato soup and a dinner salad for $24.99, and a beer for $8.45. Very good 

- Brad Haugaard 

Monrovia Police Warns Public of Telephone Scams


The Monrovia Police Department would like to alert the public to several telephone scams that are currently targeting the public. The scams are known as the IRS Scam, the Southern California Edison Scam, the Grandparent scam, and the Telephone Scam Targeting the Elderly.

Internal Revenue Service Telephone Scam
As the 2014 filing season nears an end, the Internal Revenue Service today issued another strong warning for consumers to guard against sophisticated and aggressive phone scams targeting taxpayers, including recent immigrants, as reported incidents of this crime continue to rise nationwide. These scams won’t likely end with the filing season so the IRS urges everyone to remain on guard.

The IRS will always send taxpayers a written notification of any tax due via the U.S. mail. The IRS never asks for credit card, debit card or prepaid card information over the telephone. For more information or to report a scam, go to www.irs.gov and type "scam" in the search box.

People have reported a particularly aggressive phone scam in the last several months. Immigrants are frequently targeted. Potential victims are threatened with deportation, arrest, having their utilities shut off, or having their driver’s licenses revoked. Callers are frequently insulting or hostile - apparently to scare their potential victims. Potential victims may be told they are entitled to big refunds, or that they owe money that must be paid immediately to the IRS. When unsuccessful the first time, sometimes phone scammers call back trying a new strategy.

Other characteristics of this scam include:
• Scammers use fake names and IRS badge numbers. They generally use common names and surnames to identify themselves.
• Scammers may be able to recite the last four digits of a victim’s Social Security number.
• Scammers spoof the IRS toll-free number on caller ID to make it appear that it’s the IRS calling.
• Scammers sometimes send bogus IRS emails to some victims to support their bogus calls.
• Victims hear background noise of other calls being conducted to mimic a call site.
• After threatening victims with jail time or driver’s license revocation, scammers hang up and others soon call back pretending to be from the local police or DMV, and the caller ID supports their claim.

If you get a phone call from someone claiming to be from the IRS, here’s what you should do:
• If you know you owe taxes or you think you might owe taxes, call the IRS at 1.800.829.1040. The IRS employees at that line can help you with a payment issue, if there really is such an issue.
• If you know you don’t owe taxes or have no reason to think that you owe any taxes (for example, you’ve never received a bill or the caller made some bogus threats as described above), then call and report the incident to the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration at 1.800.366.4484.
• You can file a complaint using the FTC Complaint Assistant; choose “Other” and then “Imposter Scams.” If the complaint involves someone impersonating the IRS, include the words “IRS Telephone Scam” in the notes. Taxpayers should be aware that there are other unrelated scams (such as a lottery sweepstakes) and solicitations (such as debt relief) that fraudulently claim to be from the IRS.

The IRS encourages taxpayers to be vigilant against phone and email scams that use the IRS as a lure. The IRS does not initiate contact with taxpayers by email to request personal or financial information. This includes any type of electronic communication, such as text messages and social media channels. The IRS also does not ask for PINs, passwords or similar confidential access information for credit card, bank or other financial accounts. Recipients should not open any attachments or click on any links contained in the message. Instead, forward the e-mail to phishing@irs.gov. More information on how to report phishing scams involving the IRS is available on the genuine IRS website, IRS.gov.

Southern California Edison Telephone Scam
Utility bill scammers are once again targeting customers throughout the United States by phone and sometimes even email. In both scenarios, the scammers often request personal information and threaten to cut off electrical service if they do not receive immediate payment.

Some Southern California Edison (SCE) customers have reported receiving these suspicious emails that look like a bill. Others have reported aggressive phone scams threatening immediate service disconnection if customers don’t pay a purported overdue bill.

“SCE never uses high-pressure tactics to collect or demand money for past due bills,” said Marlyn Denter, SCE’s manager of Consumer Affairs. “We are not in the business of threatening our customers with the immediate termination of service.” This latest email scam follows a recent utility phone scam where more than 2,000 SCE customers were targeted. Unfortunately, more than 300 customers have fallen victim to the scam, many of them mom and pop business owners and entrepreneurs whose first language is not English. The scammers often demand immediate payment through a prepaid cash card or debit card. The average loss for SCE business customers last year was between $800 and $1,000; residential customer lost an average of between $300 and $500. Overall, the total losses so far for SCE customers are estimated at $225,000. “We ask our customers to be alert to these scams that demand immediate payment and threaten service disconnection,” said Denter. If SCE customers receive suspicious emails, they should never click on any links or attachments, and never send a reply. Customers should also delete the email. If a customer has been victimized, they can report it online to the U.S. Department of

Justice’s Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force at StopFraud.gov.
SCE customers suspecting a fraudulent call should ask for the caller’s name, department and business phone number. If the caller refuses to provide this information, customers should terminate the call and report the incident immediately to local police. In either situation, customers should contact SCE at 800-655-4555.

Southern California Edison Scam
This particular scam targets businesses. The Suspects in this scam call the business claiming to be in billing or collections for SCE and/or Verizon. The caller tells the business their services are going to be shut off within 45 minutes to an hour, and a crew has been dispatched to cut off service unless a same-day payment is made immediately. They claim their records show the business is late on their payment and the service to the business will be affected within the hour. The caller then requests payment by a prepaid VISA or Money Pak Card and tells the business where they are available. A number of businesses in Monrovia have been taken by the scam and the loss is usually about $500-$800. The suspects sound seemingly legitimate and are targeting businesses, as businesses typically cannot afford to be without phones or power over the weekend. This is NOT normal SCE or Verizon protocol, SCE and Verizon do not shut off service on the weekends.

Grandparent Scam 
The suspects in this type of scam will call an elderly person and pretend to be a grandchild or young relative of the victim. They tell the elderly victim they are in some type of trouble and are in jail, and that they need bail money. They ask the elderly person not to tell their parents. A second suspect then calls pretending to be the police and proceeds to give the victim instructions on were to wire the bail money.

The suspects target older folks, hoping they can gain an emotional and quick response to the "need" to help out the young relative, and many times it works. The victims will quickly go to their bank, withdraw and transfer the money in an attempt to help, and by the time they realize the scam, the money has already been picked up by the suspects and is gone.

It is so important to spread awareness and to educate those that we know in hopes of preventing this crime from happening. If you have a loved one, a friend, or perhaps a neighbor that is older, share this information with them and help keep them from becoming a victim.

Telephone Scam Targeting the Elderly
The Monrovia Police Department has received several calls from elderly Monrovia citizens reporting the following telephone scam:

The elderly victim receives a call stating they owe money for an outstanding debt. The suspect soon states if they don’t pay this debt, a warrant could be issued for their arrest, their bank account will be put on hold, and there is a possibility they will lose their house. The suspect then tells the victim if they want to resolve the matter, they need to purchase a Greendot prepaid money card with a certain amount, usually not more than $500.00. Once the victim obtains the card, they are to call back and give the card number so it can be verified. The suspect then transfers the money from the victim’s card to another card and the money is gone. If the victim falls for the scam, the suspect sometimes calls back and tries to solicit additional money from the victim.

Please be aware of this scam and let others know this is going on so we can prevent this crime. Please inform your loved ones, especially the elderly, as they are the targets of this particular scam. Let them know to never give out personal information to anyone over the phone. A legitimate company would not operate by asking for personal information over the phone; they would have your information already.

Source: Monrovia Police Department

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Police: Thief Locks Himself Out of His Getaway Car; Intoxication; Telephone Scams


[Monrovia Police activities from the Police Department's Neighborhood Watch Report for April 17-19. - Brad Haugaard]

During the last seven-day period, the Police Department handled 404 service events, resulting in 78 investigations.

Parole Warrant – Suspect Arrested
April 17 at 9:09 a.m., a male subject was reported loitering on a property in the 500 block of S. Mountain. Officers arrived and a computer check of the subject revealed he had an outstanding parole warrant for his arrest. The suspect was arrested and taken into custody.

Injury Traffic Collision
April 17 at 10:26 a.m., an officer was dispatched to an injury traffic collision involving a commercial dump truck that was traveling east on Walnut and failed to maneuver a slight turn at California Avenue, clipping a fire hydrant. The water from the hydrant went into the Edison power lines, causing intermittent power outages in the area. Southern California Edison responded to evaluate the lines and the Monrovia Fire Department shut off the hydrant.

Traffic Collision / Driving Under the Influence – Suspect Arrested
April 18 at 3:00 p.m., a traffic collision was reported at Mountain and Royal Oaks. The driver attempted to make a turn onto Royal Oaks and struck a vehicle, then hit the center median and came to a rest. The investigation revealed the driver to be under the influence of some type of intoxicant, possibly an inhalant. He was arrested and held for a sobering period. He was later released with a citation to appear in court on the charges.

Petty Theft
April 18 at 8:54 p.m., a theft of merchandise was reported at a business in the 1600 block of S. Mountain. A male suspect took two leaf blowers and ran out the garden area of the store to the parking lot. The suspect attempted to get into a white Saturn with no license plates, when he realized he left the keys in the ignition and locked the doors before he entered the store. He dropped the leaf blowers and ran through the parking lot, out of sight. Officers searched for the suspect, but he was not located. The suspect’s vehicle was impounded. Later, the suspect called the business and asked for his vehicle back, but was told it was impounded by the police. The suspect was found to be on probation for theft and he refused to come to the police station for an interview. The investigation is continuing.

Telephone Scams
April 19 at 10:53 a.m., telephone scams were reported to police by two separate victims. The first victim received a phone call from a male suspect demanding money. The suspect told the victim he had his mother and if the money was not received, his mother would be harmed. The victim could hear an elderly female voice in the background, asking for help. The victim believed what the caller was telling him, and in fear for his mother’s safety, he drove to his bank to withdraw money. A coworker of the victim called police to report the incident and an officer responded to the bank. The officer arrived and contacted the victim as he was walking into the bank. The investigation determined that the phone call was a scam.

At 12:22 p.m., a second victim came into the police station to report another telephone scam. The suspect in this incident pretended to be a relative of the victim in need of money to get out of trouble. The victim in this incident realized the phone call was a scam and hung up the phone. She reported the incident so others would be aware.

Seminar About K-12 Public Education Online, at DoubleTree Monrovia


There will be a free information session for parents about California Connections Academy @ Capistrano, a tuition-free K-12 online public school authorized under state law by the Capistrano Unified School District, on Wednesday, May 31, from 6:30 to 8 p.m. at the DoubleTree Monrovia, 924 W. Huntington Dr. More information: https://goo.gl/HkVs6K

- Brad Haugaard

'Portland Loo' for Parks; Carnival Coming to Monrovia Days; County Not Interested in Measure H Ideas; Huntington Medians Almost Done: Etc.


Portland Loo.

In his weekly report, City Manager Oliver Chi reports ...

~ City staff has been planning public restrooms at city parks. The version they're thinking about was developed in Portland, and is called "The Portland Loo." It has angled louvers at the base that gives visibility inside but allows privacy, has an external light to indicate when it is occupied (which lets the cops keep an eye on it easily), and the wash basin is outside to discourage occupants from lingering. Cheaper, too. About $100,000 to $150,000 instead of the standard $250,000 to $300,000.

~ The carnival is coming back to Monrovia Days, which will be held on Saturday, May 20, and Sunday, May 21. The city, school district, and Centre Stage have coordinated to bring back the carnival. Plus, the pancake breakfast event, parade honoring MUSD Scholars and Champions, performances by youth, food, and of course, the famous Pie Eating Contest.  Sign up for the parade or pie eating contest here: https://www.monroviadays.org/

~ LA County staff reportedly gave a polite brush off to any ideas on how spend the Measure H money, that's the 1/4-cent sales tax money that was approved to fight homelessness. Chi writes that according to Monrovia's designee at a meeting: "LA County personnel politely told everyone in attendance that the proposed spending plan they had previously developed would be the one recommended for approval to the LA County Board of Supervisors, and that if anyone had an objection, they would be welcome to lodge their objections when the spending plan comes up for a vote."

~ Work on the Huntington Drive medians should be done within the next two weeks. Also, there will be new American flags along Huntington Drive and the entryway signs at the east and west end of town will be touched up.

~ Canyon Park will be closed a few days to improve the entry trail alongside the road. There'll be a concrete curb along the side of the road to separate pedestrians and bicycle traffic from the vehicular traffic. The park will be closed May 1 and 2, open on May 3 though there will be construction, then closed again May 8 and 9, and finally a bit of clean-up on May 10.

~ Monrovia Public Library is going to get better Internet service, with speeds increasing to 1 gigabit per second, about ten times faster than the current speed of 100 million bits per second. (Hooray! I've tried it and it's pretty bad at times.) The Library received a $24,000 grant from the California State Library to do the work.

~ Monrovia Biotech Day 2017 will take place on April 26, from 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m., at the Boys and Girls Club of the Foothills Mary Wilcox Youth Center (843  E. Olive Ave.).  Teens from the sixth grade up are welcome.  The free event will allow students to meet scientists and conduct experiments and play games. The event is sponsored by LabLaunch Monrovia, Oak Crest Institute of Science, and the Boys & Girls Club of the Foothills.

- Brad Haugaard

Yes, Del Taco Will Be Reopening, And 'Soon'


A lot of people have been wondering on social media what has become of the shut-down Del Taco on Huntington across from Target. Well, it promises that it is "reopening soon," and is hiring for all positions. https://goo.gl/XFVhWz

- Brad Haugaard

All About Pelargoniums at Monrovia Garden Club Meeting


At the Monrovia Garden Club monthly meeting on Tuesday April 25, 7 p.m., Matt-Del and Rebecca Tufenkian of Dominus Planetarium will teach about pelargoniums.  Materials will be available to plant and propagate a small plant. The meetings are held in the Fireside Room on the north side of the parking lot at First Presbyterian Church. Meetings start at 7 p.m. with light refreshments served at 6:30 p.m. Visitors welcome.

- Brad Haugaard

Truck Hits Hydrant, Water Hits Power Lines, Power Goes Out


A semi truck created a geyser when it hit a fire hydrant. Apparently the water shot up, hit the electricity lines and knocked out the power for 435 customers. https://goo.gl/gYAXR1

- Brad Haugaard