Police Blotter: July 8, 2022

Wednesday, June 29

An alert resident called 911 at 12:50 a.m. to report a suspicious vehicle parked at Vista del Valle Elementary School, 500 Vista Dr. The caller also reported three individuals had exited the car and were headed to the school. When officers arrived, they contacted three young men sitting in a 2015 Chevrolet Equinox, which had no license plates. Police discovered four Airsoft pistols with the orange tips removed, which makes the toys appear to be real guns. Police arrested San Dimas resident Yanni Ovaldo, 19, and Pomona residents Kenneth Contreres, 20, and Adarious Bennett, 18, for altering or marking a firearm to make it look real.

Early Wednesday morning, two witnesses reportedly observed a subject strike the front window of Some Crust Bakery, 119 Yale Ave., with a skateboard, causing it to crack. The witnesses further provided a description of the alleged perpetrator, who left the scene on foot, heading south on Yale. When police arrived around 4:30 a.m. they were initially unable to locate a suspect. At 5:05 a.m. Claremont Colleges campus safety called police about a man sleeping on campus. When officers arrived, they noticed the sleeping man matched the description of the person who broke the window, and he had a skateboard in his possession. The witnesses positively identified the unhoused Rancho Cucamonga man and he was arrested for vandalism. Damage to the business was estimated to be $825.

At 3:56 p.m. an officer observed a black 2012 Mercedes driving at a high rate of speed south on Indian Hill Blvd. toward Base Line Rd. and conducted a traffic stop. Claremont records check revealed the driver, Claremont resident Joseph K. Bell, 29, had two outstanding warrants, one from Los Angeles County and the other from San Bernardino County, for driving on a suspended license. He was arrested for the warrants and transported to police department where he was released with two citations.

Thursday, June 30

Officers observed a white 1998 Dodge Ram traveling in the alley behind Stater Bros. market, 1055 W. Foothill Blvd., with expired registration, and pulled the driver over on nearby Regis Avenue. The officer made contact with the driver, a 68-year-old Pomona man, and a records check revealed he had a suspended driver’s license and a warrant. He was arrested, booked and released, and his truck was impounded. While officers were waiting for a tow truck, a 70-year-old unhoused man who is very familiar to police approached the scene, reportedly became belligerent and argumentative and refused to leave. He was determined to be under the influence of alcohol and unable to care for himself and was arrested and taken to the Claremont jail to detox. Claremont police have arrested him 24 times prior for public intoxication.

Friday, July 1

An early morning trip to get some fast food turned into a hit-and-run collision in the drive-through lane at Chevron/McDonald’s in the 800 block of South Indian Hill Boulevard. At 12:32 a.m. the victim was waiting behind a white 2010 Nissan Titan when the truck is alleged to have suddenly backed up, colliding with the victim’s vehicle. The victim then attempted to make contact, but the driver of the Nissan immediately fled, heading north on Indian Hill Blvd., and then onto the 10 Freeway. The driver of the Nissan is described as a Hispanic male with bald head.


Saturday, July 2

Police received another call of a hit-and-run, this time a vehicle versus cyclist collision. A male cyclist reported a Blue Honda Accord struck him at 9 a.m. near the intersection of Foothill Blvd. and Towne Ave. The driver then fled west on Foothill. The victim, 50, advised officers he was not injured and did not want to prosecute for the hit-and-run. A family member responded to pick up the cyclist.


Sunday, July 3

Police received a 911 call at 8:10 a.m. regarding a man waving a handgun in the parking lot of Motel 6, 840 S. Indian Hill Blvd. Witnesses say the man then entered a white Ford F-150 in parking lot with the lettering “Soto Landscaping” on the door. Arriving officers located the truck, which was still in the parking lot but unoccupied. After the officers checked motel records, the subject identified as Ontario resident Jesus Sotojara, 32, was found to be a registered guest. A records check revealed Sotojara was on probation, had an active domestic violence restraining order against him, and was a convicted felon. Officers attempted to make contact with Sotojara, but he refused to open the door to his room. Police were eventually able to convince him to let them enter, and during a probation search of the room they allegedly found cocaine and a firearm without a serial number, known as a ghost gun. Sotojara was arrested for three felonies: being a felon in possession of firearm, possession of firearm while in possession of narcotics and the ghost gun. He was also arrested for resisting or delaying an officer, being under the influence of controlled substance and violation of a court order.

At 1:01 p.m. police were conducting a welfare check at the Knights Inn and observed a vehicle leaving the motel. Officers made contact with the driver and verified he was the registered owner. A records check revealed the driver, Pomona resident Desmond Heyward, 33, had an active warrant for a previous incident in Claremont. At 10:30 a.m.  November 6, 2021, police received a 911 call from the victim of a physical altercation at the Shell station, 747 S. Indian Hill Blvd. When officers arrived, they contacted Heyward and the victim, discovering that both had sustained injuries during the fight. Officers reviewed video surveillance and say the victim was seen entering the station to make a transaction, and Heyward followed him and randomly punched the victim in face multiple times. The combatants fell to ground and the victim was able to straddle Heyward and punch him back several times. The victim signed a private person’s arrest form and was treated at the scene for his injuries. Heyward was issued a citation and transported to hospital.

Monday, July 4

At 11:51 a.m. Claremont police were called to Claremont Toyota, in the 600 block of Auto Center Drive, to take a report of a vehicle that was stolen three days earlier. On July 1 at approximately 3:49 p.m., an unknown subject entered a blue 2021 Honda Pilot in the parking lot, backed out and traveled east on Auto Center Drive. After they reviewed surveillance video dealership personnel confirmed the theft, but the subject was not identifiable.

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