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Our police blotter informed readers on another unique crime year in 2018

The blotter played a central role in Claremont news in 2018, giving residents the latest in what’s happening in Claremont crime.

While the City of Trees is certainly safer than other towns, we have had our fair share of incidents. Some, of course, were more ridiculous than others. Here is the best of the best.

January

Two teenage boys made their views about the holidays crystal clear when they were arrested for setting a Christmas tree on fire at a playground on January 3. Officers responded to San Jose Avenue around 10:30 p.m. after witnesses reported seeing flames coming from the playground, Lt. Walters said. Two boys, 15 and 13, were seen leaving the park, and were arrested for arson.

February

A Pomona man was arrested after calling police about an apparent bombing in Claremont that never happened. Michael Perry, 44, called CPD just before 1 p.m. claiming that God told him a bomb went off in Claremont, according to police logs. The information was deemed not credible, and police found a meth pipe in Mr. Perry’s possession, Lt. Walters said.

March

Police were called after 30-year-old Ramon Bueno was seen in the nude in the parking lot of House of Pong around 2:20 p.m. on March 7, Sgt. Thompson said. There is no information as to why or how Mr. Bueno ended up in the parking lot in the buff, but police said he was “visibly drunk.” He was arrested for public intoxication, indecent exposure and for having warrants.

April

An attempted robbery at Denny’s was thwarted after employees called the robber’s bluff. The robber entered the restaurant at 820 S. Indian Hill Blvd. around 1:30 a.m. on April 30, passed a note to the server and flashed a gun in his waistband. Both the employee and the manager believed the “gun” was fake and called the robber out on it, at which point the robber fled the scene. Nothing was taken from the restaurant.

May

Calls came in around 9:15 p.m. on May 4 regarding a man carrying a box of kittens at Motel 6 who had “collapsed near the tennis courts.” According to police, he was charging at people and walking around the parking lot looking for an escaped kitten. The man, 56-year-old John Parra of La Verne, was too drunk to remain in public and had a warrant for his arrest from San Bernardino County. He was arrested.

June

A burglar helped himself to a free breakfast after breaking into a car and stealing two dozen eggs. The unidentified thief shattered the front passenger window of the victim’s Nissan Altima between 1 p.m. on May 31 and 9:45 a.m. on June 1 on Arrow Highway. The value of the eggs was estimated at $10.

July

A La Verne man was arrested after leading Claremont police on a chase from a DUI checkpoint. Around 11 p.m., 19-year-old Abram Hilario rolled into the checkpoint, which was set up at Foothill Boulevard and Dartmouth Avenue. Mr. Hilario didn’t stop, and led police on a chase west on Foothill and north on Indian Hill. He eventually reached Champlain Drive, where he hit a curb and surrendered to police. Mr. Hilario reportedly told police he had a cocktail at a friend’s house prior to arriving at the DUI checkpoint, which is why he says he got scared and tried to flee. But when officers conducted a field sobriety test, they found he was not over the legal limit. He was arrested.

August

Two wedding guests ended their night on a down note after both were arrested for DUI at the Padua Hills Theater. Ryan Dietrich, 34, from Long Beach, reportedly drove into a pole as he was leaving the theater around 11 p.m., Lt. Walters said. He failed a field sobriety test, and was arrested for DUI. A second drunk driver was taken in a short time later, however, police did not provide information on that arrest.

September

A Rancho Cucamonga man was arrested for criminal threats and battery stemming from a bizarre incident at Motel 6. Darren Smith, 25, was accused of telling an employee, “Imma blast you” during an argument, and squirting lotion on the male victim, Lt. Walters said. Officers arrived around 11:40 a.m. and arrested Mr. Smith. It was unknown what started the verbal argument.

October

An Adelanto man was arrested stemming from a criminal threats investigation from May. On May 18, Kenny Hall, 36, reportedly called two 13-year-old girls and made comments about “wanting to fight their parents,” Cpl. Tillman said. He was arrested in Claremont on October 17 on suspicion of child annoyance and causing mental suffering, both misdemeanors.

November

A stuffed panda bear was mercilessly stolen from a car in front of Baskin-Robbins on Foothill Boulevard. The thief shattered the front window of the car and took a tote bag containing the helpless stuffed bear before fleeing.

December

Allen Perez, a 45-year-old Pomona resident, was found passed out in a grass area in front of Technip on the 500 block of Arrow Highway. Police said Mr. Perez was determined to be “extremely intoxicated,” and he was arrested and taken to jail to sober up. Mr. Perez has been arrested by Claremont police more than 40 times for public intoxication.

—Matthew Bramlett

news@claremont-courier.com

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