Police blotter 7-3-15

Wednesday, June 24

A not-so-smart thief took a trip to the city jail after leaving behind his passport at the scene of the crime. According to Detective Hector Tamayo, 28-year-old Matthew Chambers attempted to book a stay at the DoubleTree Hotel around 9:15 p.m. with a stolen credit card. When the card was declined, the Hacienda Heights resident fled but left behind his passport. Working with Claremont police, hotel staff contacted Mr. Chambers and made arrangements for him to pick up his passport. On June 27, police were waiting for the thief when he arrived at the hotel and arrested him for forgery and burglary.


A handful of teenagers are lucky to be alive after their car flipped over near Claremont High School. According to Det. Tamayo, the 16-year-old driver was traveling north on Rosemont from Scripps around 2 p.m. when he misjudged a turn. The vehicle’s tires clipped the curb, sending the Honda Civic onto its side and into a nearby yard. Thankfully, none of the four occupants was injured; the car was towed, and damage to the homeowner’s property was estimated between $250-$300. 


A Village shop employee fell for the old bait-and-switch routine and the culprit remains at large. At approximately 6:30 p.m., an unknown man entered American Apparel and bought a Chapstick for $4.17. The man gave the clerk a $100 bill and some coins, for which she provided him with $96 in change. After the transaction, the thief discovered he  had four dollar bills to pay for his purchase and offered them to the girl instead. She accepted the $4 in ones and gave him back the $100 bill, but failed to retrieve the $96 she had previously given to him before he fled the store. By the time the clerk realized what had happened, the man was already long gone. The suspect is described as a Hispanic male, approximately 60 to 70 years old, standing 5-feet 5-inches tall, with gray/ white hair and an average build. Anyone with information is encouraged to call Claremont Police at (909) 399-5411.


Thursday, June 25

A Claremont man was transported to a local hospital after his vehicle smashed into a stone and cement planter. The 69-year-old male was driving his Honda CRV west on Mt. Carmel at San Diego Court around 5:45 a.m. when he made an unsafe turn and his car collided with a curb, coming to rest in a homeowner’s planter. The senior driver suffered lacerations to the right side of his face and hand, complained of pain to his thigh and hip and was taken by ambulance to Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center for treatment.


Vacationing Claremonters were notified that their home was burglarized while they were away. A neighbor watching the house on the 400 block of Cinderella Drive told police that thieves entered the residence through a rear door some time between 10 p.m. on June 24 and 7 a.m. on June 25 and ransacked the place. A full list of missing items has not yet been detailed, but it appears the thieves took jewelry and coins.


Friday, June 26

A New Yorker was thankful to Claremont police for coming to his rescue after he’d had too much to drink. Robin Delacruz was discovered leaning against a light pole near Butte Street and Campus Avenue around 4:45 a.m., where he had a hard time maintaining his balance. Police made contact with the 26-year-old man, who had apparently urinated in his shorts and didn’t know where he was. “I’m an idiot for drinking too much,” he told police, and added “Thank you for helping me.” Mr. Delacruz was arrested for public intoxication and taken to CPD jail to sleep it off.


Claremont police responded to two home invasions within one hour. According to Det. Tamayo, thieves used a tool to pry open a rear bedroom window to gain access to a residence on the 500 block of Sycamore Avenue around 8 p.m., activating the home’s alarm system. Police arrived to the home but the intruders had already fled. At 8:45 p.m., a second home on the 900 block of Amador was also burglarized. A neighbor, who knew the residents were out of town, noticed a light on and heard noises coming from the house and contacted Claremont police. Sure enough, a rear window had been pryed open, the home was ransacked and the burglars had left undetected out the back door. A list of the missing items has not yet been provided to police.


Saturday, June 27

The man suspected of stealing baby formula and razors from Stater Bros. on several occasions was arrested after committing the same crime. Johnny Lopez entered the supermarket on Foothill Boulevard at 1:10 p.m. and loaded up on six cans of baby formula and 10 Gillette razors worth $367. The 21-year-old Diamond Bar resident was spotted by store security and detained until police arrived. Mr. Lopez told officers he’d fallen on hard times and was just trying to feed his kid. He was arrested for misdemeanor shoplifting and booked at Claremont jail.


A Claremont resident was airlifted to USC Medical Center after a truck struck her while she crossed the street. The 54-year-old female pedestrian was in the crosswalk on Foothill Boulevard and Mills Avenue when the 19-year-old driver of a Dodge Ram 1500 failed to yield, hitting her with his vehicle. The victim, who told officers she couldn’t remember what had happened, suffered injuries to her head, neck, back and right wrist. The woman was transported by helicopter to USC Medical Center for treatment and her condition remains unknown.


Sunday, June 28

An Azusa resident, not even old enough to buy beer, was arrested for driving under the influence. David Barrera was spotted by Claremont police around 2 a.m. after the vehicle he was driving began weaving in and out of lanes near Bonita and Towne Avenues. Officers pulled over the 19-year-old driver, who exhibited signs of intoxication but told police he hadn’t been drinking. Following a series of field sobriety tests, Mr. Barrera admitted to drinking and he was arrested for DUI. He was taken to CPD jail where he was booked and later released.


It was “bottoms up” for a Glendora gal who couldn’t keep her feet firmly planted on the ground. Katherine Figolah was staggering around First Avenue and Indian Hill at approximately 7:15 p.m. when Claremont police made contact with her. The 34-year-old woman in heels had a hard time keeping her balance, first falling onto her friend and then hitting the ground on her bottom with her feet high in the air. Ms. Figolah was arrested for public drunkeness and was released following detox.


Tipsy driver equals drunk driver, a lesson quickly learned by a Chino woman who had a difficult time distinguishing between the two. According to Det. Tamayo, Kathy McIntyre had left a 70th birthday party at the DoubleTree Hotel around 10:25 p.m. when she got behind the wheel of her Chevy Equinox and made an illegal U-turn on Foothill at Berkeley. Claremont officers witnessed the maneuver and conducted a traffic stop. During their investigation, Ms. McIntyre exhibited signs of alcohol intoxication and admitted to having a couple of glasses of wine at the party. When asked if she was feeling the effects of the alcohol, the 46-year-old woman told police,  “No, I’m just tipsy!” After admitting she didn’t feel safe driving, the Chino resident was arrested for DUI and booked at Claremont jail.

—Angela Bailey


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