Police blotter 3-22-19

Tuesday, March 12

Two people were arrested after being found driving a car that had been stolen a week prior. On March 5 at 5:15 p.m., two victims were working on their black Nissan Maxima at Denny’s when two men stole their car, Sgt. David DeMetz of the Claremont Police Department said. The car thieves were only described as two Hispanic men, and Sgt. DeMetz noted both victims gave inconsistent statements to police.

On March 12 at 9:45 p.m., police found the car on the 500 block of south College Avenue, being driven by 46-year-old Adrian Zealand of Moreno Valley. Mr. Zealand told police he recently bought the car for $800. He allegedly had handgun ammunition in the car, while having a no-bail warrant for his arrest. A passenger, 34-year-old Maria Sanchez of La Verne, had a warrant for her arrest and is alleged to have had methamphetamine concealed in her bra. Mr. Zealand was arrested for grand theft auto, possession of a stolen vehicle, being a felon in possession of ammo, and a warrant. Ms. Sanchez was arrested for possession of drugs and the warrant.

Monday, March 18

Police arrived at the Chevron station at 267 S. Indian Hill Blvd. at 2:35 a.m. Monday morning after an alarm went off and saw a white Chevy truck fleeing from the station.

Once police pulled the truck over in a nearby residential area, a passenger jumped out and fled on foot and was not located. Two other men in the car—37-year-old Ruben Carvajal of Pomona and 39-year-old Michael Orozco of Pomona—complied with officers and were arrested.

Inside the truck were Chevron display cases containing lottery tickets, cigarettes, cigarette lighters, potato chips and drinks, police said. All told, the approximate value of the stolen goods was $15,000.

A crowbar, saws, files and pry tools, which police said were used to commit the burglary, were also found in the truck. Surveillance footage from the store showed the suspects smashing the front glass door, police said.

Both Mr. Carbajal and Mr. Orozso were arrested on suspicion of burglary, possession of stolen property, burglary tools, and drug paraphernalia, police said. Mr. Carbajal was also arrested for driving on a suspended driver’s license and false vehicle registration. Mr. Orozco had warrants related to identity theft, possession of burglary tools and possession of controlled substances.

Mr. Carbajal is being held at the Claremont city jail in lieu of $20,000 bail, and Mr. Orozco is being held on $75,000 bail. Both were arraigned in Pomona Superior Court on Thursday, March 21.


Police arrested two people after finding an alleged identity theft operation with more than 20,000 victims. It all started when police pulled over a car around 2:07 p.m. The driver, 39-year-old Joseph Martinez, was allegedly under the influence of drugs and had a suspended license and a warrant. A search of the car yielded stolen mail, credit cards, fake drivers’ licenses and a key used to open community mailboxes. A passenger, 28-year-old Raymond Lussow of Pomona, also had a warrant.

The ensuing investigation led police to a room at the Claremont Lodge, where the suspects “fraudulently rented a room,” Lt. Walters said. Inside the room were additional pieces of stolen mail, a card reader, fake checks and more than 20,000 personal profiles of identity theft victims.

Both Mr. Martinez and Mr. Lussow were arrested on suspicion of identity theft, mail theft, illegal possession of a card reader, forgery and warrants. Mr. Martinez was also arrested for DUI.

—Matthew Bramlett



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