Tag Archives: police

‘POLICE LOG’: West Sac crime happenings

FROM THE NEWS-LEDGER — MARCH 26, 2014 —

News items below are collected from police dispatchers’ notes and arrest reports. The information in them has often not been verified beyond the initial reports.

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March 14
A Fillmore Place woman reported someone tried to steal the catalytic converter from her vehicle.

March 18, 10:02 a.m.
Police responded to a complaint about a homeless camp at F and 6th Streets. An officer reports that a 50-year old woman there “saw me, concealed herself behind a tree and began to dump property from her person. Located on the ground was a hard eyeglass case containing a suspected methamphetamine pipe.”
The woman was arrested.

March 18, 5:30 p.m.
Police responded to an argument between parents and their 28-year old son in a north-city home. The son was “throwing and breaking property.”
When the parents got in the car to get away, the son tried to deflate their car tires. The father, a cancer patient, tried to stop him, and was pushed and scratched. The son threatened to kill the pair during the altercation. He left, but later returned.
Police detained him and, when he did not obey commands, they pepper-sprayed him and took him into custody.

March 18, 8:15 p.m.
A woman reported a home burglary on Jasmine Avenue. Taken were some spare change and a gym bag, for a $57 loss.

March 18, 9:32 p.m.
A West Capitol resident reported being in a bathroom, when a 21-year old man (possibly an acquaintance) entered — and racked the slide on a gun he was carrying. Police responded, and determined the gun was a “replica.”
The man wielding it had “bloodshot watery eyes, slurred speech and was unsteady on his feet.” He was arrested for being too drunk to care for himself.

March 19, 11:55 a.m.
A Topaz Road man reported having rented a Toyota Prius from a West Sacramento agency. Then, the man’s son found an iPad under the passenger seat. The man reported it to police at the suggestion of the rental company.

March 19, 9:30 p.m.
A citizen found a wallet containing ID and $2.37, near Pheasant Hollow (Higgins Road at Jefferson Boulevard). The citizen turned in the wallet to police.

March 20, 7:30 a.m.
A $727 bike was stolen from a rack on Sacramento Avenue.

March 20, 2 p.m.
River City High School reported that a bike had been chained, unlocked, to a pole at the school since Feb. 14. Police booked it as found property.

March 21, 6 a.m.
A woman reported a catalytic converter stolen from her vehicle, causing loss and damage of about $4,000. (Information about the location of this theft was whited out of the police department’s press book, inappropriately, by police staff. See the note at the bottom regarding recent catalytic converter thefts in Southport).

March 21, 7 a.m.
An officer responded to the report of a suspicious vehicle at Southport’s Town Center Plaza.
The officer found a Camaro, with a 27-year old Marysville man “slumped over his steering wheel.”
“His clothes and shoes were on the ground outside the car,” reported the officer. “the hood was up and the engine components were tossed about.”  The man, apparently so drunk he “could barely stand up,” was arrested for public drunkenness.

March 21, 7 a.m.
A man reported the theft of a catalytic converter from his Toyota 4Runner during the night on Union Square Road. Damage was about $1,000.

March 21, 7:30 a.m.
A woman reported a catalytic converter stolen from her vehicle, for a $1,000 loss. The location was deleted from records by police staff.

March 21, 8 a.m.
A woman reported the theft of a catalytic converter from her vehicle, for a $2,000 loss. The location of the crime was withheld by police staff.

March 21, 8 a.m.
A man reported the theft of $600 worth of stereo equipment and other items from his van parked on Cummins Way.

March 21, 3:27 p.m.
A woman tried to shoplift $509 worth of merchandise from a Riverpoint Court store. She fled without the items when confronted by a loss prevention specialist.

March 21, 3:27 p.m.
This report comes from the 1100-block of West Capitol, where a 32-year old woman objected to the methods of a 36-year old homeless panhandler:
“Suspect aggressively solicited money from the victim. Victim placed suspect under citizen’s arrest. Suspect was arrested and later booked at Yolo County Jail.”

March 21, 6:20 p.m.
A 49-year old man was found sleeping in front of a supermarket on the 1200-block of West Capitol. He was arrested after being found to be a wanted “parolee at large.”

March 21, 11:46 p.m.
From a park on the 1700-block of Lake Washington Boulevard:
“Unknown suspects cut the chains to the swings at Whitey’s Park. Police collected the swings to be held for safekeeping and reported the vandalism and safekeeping to (the) parks department.”

March 22, 7:14 a.m.
An officer found an envelope containing a nickel near the prisoner’s bench in the police department’s booking facility. It was booked as found property.

March 22, 7:30 a.m.
A Soule Street auto repair shop reported the burglary of $300 in cash.

March 22, 8:03 a.m.
Police contacted a woman at a homeless camp on the 3000-block of West Capitol. A 47-year old woman was found to have three warrants, and she was arrested.

March 22, 8:18 a.m.
Police contacted a 46-year old Todhunter Avenue man on the 1000-block of Sacramento Avenue because he matched the description of a burglary suspect.
The man had an outstanding warrant and was in possession of a shopping cart from a Reed Avenue-area home supply store. He went to jail.

March 23, 1:41 a.m.
An officer pulled a car over on Jefferson Blvd. near F Street because the license plates weren’t lighted. There was a 20-year old man from Danbury Court at the wheel. He failed a field sobriety test. The man admitted having consumed some spaghetti, as well as “4-5 shots of Bombay” in recent hours. He was arrested for DUI.

March 23, 7:30 a.m.
Police responded to a report that there were suspicious people inside the Merkley Avenue post office, possibly breaking into P.O. boxes. A 53-year old homeless man was contacted and arrested for possession of methamphetamine.

March 23, 10:30 p.m.
A West Capitol Avenue mobile home was found burglarized. The man who lived there said the $2,200 loss included about $2,000 in prescription medicines, as well as a blood pressure machine and a TV.

EDITOR’S NOTE: We are in contact with police officials regarding the problem of inappropriate removal of information from documents in the department’s press book.
Although incident locations were deleted from reports concerning several thefts of catalytic converters in Southport, we have found mention of some of these, in addition to those named above in the log (Fillmore Place and Union Square Road).
These other locations include Monterey Court, Peppertree Road, Princeton Road and Coffeeberry Road.
It’s our understanding that thieves of catalytic converters like to go to work at night, on cars with good ground clearance (like SUVs and some pickups, especially Toyotas). And they like to work where they won’t be seen.
So you may wish to park those “target” cars in the garage if you can, or outside somewhere you can keep an eye on the side of the car that has the exhaust system.
Damage from these thefts ranges from the hundreds to the low thousands of dollars. It’s especially expensive if the thieves saw through the exhaust pipes to grab the catalytic converter. If you’re luckier, they’ll just unbolt the converter.

The devices are often stolen for the value of rare metals inside.

 

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West Sac man dies in Yolo County jail

NEWS-LEDGER ONLINE – March 20, 2014 –

A West Sacramento man died in jail custody yesterday, apparently of suicide.

Captain Larry Cecchetini of the Yolo County Sheriff’s Department said 33-year old inmate Nitesh Raj Singh had been in custody at the Woodland facility since March 6 on domestic violence charges. Singh was found in distress at about 1:30 p.m. Wednesday.

“Singh was housed in a single cell at the time of the incident,” reported Cecchetini. “The inmate was observed by correctional staff only 25 minutes earlier and he appeared well and was not displaying any signs of distress.”

Later, he said, “a correctional officer was conducting routine cell checks when he found an inmate apparently trying to commit suicide. The officer called for assistance and entered the cell, where he observed the inmate with a sheet wrapped around his neck and the other end tied to a light fixture in the cell. Correctional and medical staff at the jail immediately began CPR and called for fire department and ambulance to respond. The inmate was transported to Woodland Memorial Hospital where he was pronounced dead later in the afternoon.”

The sheriff’s department and its coroner’s office are investigating.

Singh’s next of kin were notified of the death last night, said Cecchetini.

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Meth-related arrests in central & northern West Sacramento

By Steve Marschke
News-Ledger Editor

West Sacramento police joined an FBI “Safe Streets Task Force” and other agencies to serve arrest warrants last week on four “known Norteno street gang members” for sale of methamphetamine and other criminal activity, according to Lieutenant Tod Sockman of the W.S.P.D.

The warrants were served at about 7 a.m. on Tuesday, March 4.

Other agencies involved included the state Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, California Highway Patrol, Sacramento Police Department and Davis Police Department.

Arrested were three West Sacramento man and one man from North Highlands. They were:

— Richard Mancha, 29, of West Sacramento. An arrest report viewed by the News-Ledger shows Mancha was picked up by police at a home at 728 Yolo Street. Officers say they found methamphetamine in quantities large enough to be “for sale,” scales, packaging and gang paraphernalia.

— Richard Posado, a 28-year old from West Sacramento. An arrest report said that Posada was picked up at 1729 Merkley Avenue.

— Ricardo Garza, 37, who was arrested during a warrant service at 731 Beardsley Drive. Police say they found there “methamphetamine for sale, cocaine for sale, marijuana for sale, honey oil concentrated cannabis and a honey oil manufacturing operation,” along with drug packaging equipment.

— Robert Sanchez, 37, of North Highlands.

The arrest warrants followed “a long-term FBI Safe Streets Task Force and West Sacramento Police Department investigation into the sales of methamphetamine in West Sacramento,” said Sockman in a press release.

 

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Home invasion robbery in Southport

NEWS-LEDGER — MARCH 5, 2014 —

By Steve Marschke
News-Ledger Editor

Three men with handguns are sought by police after they entered a house on Sherman Island Road on February 25, assaulting a pair of men inside and making off with about $1,420 worth of electronics.

According to a police report, the crime was reported at 10:18 p.m. from the Southport house.

Three suspects, each carrying a handgun, “physically assaulted the two victims inside, and stole several items. All suspects brandished handguns at both victims, and physically assaulted both victims with their handguns.”

Lieutenant Tod Sockman of the West Sacramento Police Department elaborated for the News-Ledger:

“Three (suspects) wearing jackets and gloves broke into an attached garage, and then the house, while the occupant and his roommate were home,” said Sockman. “They were looking for marijuana — they kept repeating over and over, ‘Where’s the weed? Where’s the weed?’”

Apparently, they were at the wrong house.

“There was no weed,” said Sockman.

The victims were a pair of men age 50 and 52, according to the report. One suffered a black eye and reports he may have been hit on the back of the head with a handgun.

Taken in the robbery were a $600 iPhone, a $250 car stereo and a $550 laptop computer.

There were no detailed descriptions of the suspects, and no escape car was seen.

 

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For CHiPs, the path starts here

  The CHP Academy’s memorial fountain, in a central part of the Reed Avenue campus . The fountain is ringed with brass plaques honoring each of the California Highway Patrol officers killed in the line of duty since the agency was founded. Some of the brass markers can be seen in the foreground              (News-Ledger photos/Steve Marschke)

The CHP Academy’s memorial fountain, in a central part of the Reed Avenue campus . The fountain is ringed with brass plaques honoring each of the California Highway Patrol officers killed in the line of duty since the agency was founded. Some of the brass markers can be seen in the foreground (News-Ledger photos/Steve Marschke)

NEWS-LEDGER — FEB 19, 2014 —

By Thomas Farley
News-Ledger Correspondent

“Safety, Service, Security”: that’s the motto of the California Highway Patrol.

The men and women officers who uphold that motto begin their careers right here in West Sacramento. Located on 457 acres off of Reed Avenue in the city’s northwest, the present CHP Academy began construction in 1974 and graduated its first class of recruits in 1976.

Capt. Chuck King CHP Academy Commander (News-Ledger photo)

Capt. Chuck King
CHP Academy Commander
(News-Ledger photo)

The Academy Commander, Captain Chuck King, recently invited the News-Ledger to tour the property. Judging by the number of cars in the parking lots, it was apparent upon arrival that the Academy is a major employer. Approximately two hundred part-time and full time employees work at the site, including sixty non-uniformed CHP employees. These people do everything from administrative tasks to cooking in the kitchens.

Next to the lobby in the headquarters is the recently completed CHP museum. It houses three motorcycles from years’ past as well as exhibits detailing the history of the Highway Patrol. Clearly evident are tradition, pride in service, and an esprit de corps among C.H.P. staff.

Step through the administration building, and you’ll find a central courtyard and the badge-shaped, five-pointed Memorial Fountain. The fountain pays tribute to the 225 California Highway Patrol Officers that have been killed in the line of duty since the organization was founded in 1929. (The most recent officers to give their lives were Officers Juan Gonzalez and Brian Law, partners and friends who graduated together in 2008 from the academy. The pair died Monday morning in a crash while responding to a call near Fresno.)

Every week, in a tradition that binds the generations of graduating classes to each other, cadets polish the brass name plaques that are affixed to the sides of the fountain.

CADETS -- mostly men with fresh short haircuts -- listen as instructors explain how to investigate a traffic accident   (News-Ledger photo)

CADETS — mostly men with fresh short haircuts — listen as instructors explain how to investigate a traffic accident (News-Ledger photo)

King led News-Ledger reporters toward the dormitories, which accommodate recruits during their 27-week training session. Nearby were classrooms, a gymnasium, and even a PX (a market). Facing the courtyard is a dining commons that can seat 400 people at a time. Some two hundred cadets in two training classes are presently at the school.

“We’re a completely self-contained facility,” King says. “The cadets live here for the duration of their training. And we are the only CHP Academy in the state. A lot of people are surprised at that. Since 1976, every officer you see working the road has gone through this academy.”

Inside the classroom was an amphitheater with rows of seats perched high above each other. Instructors in the well of the room supervised the class. Cadets looked on intently as two of their peers demonstrated how they would conduct a hypothetical accident investigation.

A rifle range, a pistol, range, a helipad, and a running track, are just some of the facilities beyond the main campus buildings. But the pride of the Academy is its Emergency Vehicle Operations Course, or EVOC. This is a set of specialized tracks that allow cadets to practice everything from wet-weather driving to high-speed maneuvers.

One of those driving courses is a “skid pad” – a large stretch of pavement outfitted with pop-up sprinklers, and graded to create puddles several inches deep. The sprinklers were activated for a driving demonstration. Patrol cars used for foul-weather driving practice are deliberately equipped with “bald” tires – all the better to practice hydroplaning and emergency steering techniques on wet roads.
Captain King explained that all of the water from the sprinklers is re-circulated and recycled.

Officer Julie Saraiva, an EVOC instructor, introduced herself to reporters and promptly threw a practice car around two laps and a dozen “S” turns. At each curve she accelerated and then put on the brakes, sliding the car into one turn and then another.

 CHP driving instructor Julie Saraiva demonstrates how to get a patrol car into a skid -- and, more importantly, how to get out. A reporter is in the passenger’s seat.  (News-Ledger photos/Steve Marschke)

CHP driving instructor Julie Saraiva demonstrates how to get a patrol car into a skid — and, more importantly, how to get out. A reporter is in the passenger’s seat.
(News-Ledger photos/Steve Marschke)

Then a visiting reporter took the wheel, at one point overcorrecting in a wet skid and spinning the car 180 degrees to face the wrong way. Instructor Saraiva nevertheless gave him good marks for a first session on the skid pad.

“Skid pad” driving is just part of their total EVOC training, one of 42 total “learning domains” that a cadet must master.

The CHP is selective. Captain King stated that over 20,000 people applied last year. The cadets now on-site represent just one percent of that number.

What quality does an applicant need most?

“The most important characteristic for a future officer is integrity, a good moral compass,” said King. “After they get to the Academy, the most important thing is dedication and staying focused on the training.”

To patrol California’s highways, C.H.P. officers must first take the road through West Sacramento.

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Former West Sac police officer faces up to life in prison after jury finds him guilty on 18 counts

SERGIO ALVAREZ, accused West Sacramento Police Officer (booking photo, Yolo County Jail)

Former West Sac
police officer
Sergio Alvarez
(booking photo)

Former West Sac
police officer
Sergio Alvarez
(booking photo)

NEWS-LEDGER ONLINE — FEB 27, 2014 —

A Yolo County jury today announced “guilty” verdicts on 18 felony counts related to sexual assault and kidnapping, in a case involving former West Sacramento Police Officer Sergio Alvarez, reports the Yolo County D.A.’s office. He faces a sentence of up to life in prison.

The jury deadlocked on nine other counts.

Alvarez, 38,  was accused of taking advantage of five women he encountered while patrolling West Sacramento on the graveyard shift as a local officer in 2011-2012.  He was arrested a year ago, and pleaded not guilty.

His defense attorney conceded misdeeds by the officer, denying some charges and saying that other relationships involving the alleged victims and Alvarez had been consensual.

More in next week’s News-Ledger.

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Teen injured by gunshot in car

FROM THE NEWS-LEDGER — FEB. 19, 2014 —

By Steve Marschke
News-Ledger Editor

Four teens face charges after an apparent accidental shooting inside a parked car on February 7.

The shooting happened at about 1 p.m. on the 2600-block of Franklyn Way in West Sacramento. A neighbor heard a gunshot and called police.

Investigators believe a handgun went off inside a car occupied by four teens age 16-17. A 16-year old male was shot in the abdomen.

The car then began driving and encountered a patrol car nearby.

“The only got to the end of the block and the cops showed up on scene,” said Lieutenant Tod Sockman of the West Sacramento Police Department. “They weren’t trying to hide.”

All of the teens – including the injured victim, who is now recovering – say the shooting was an accident.

“One of the other kids had it and they were playing with it,” said Sockman. “I think they thought it was a BB gun. They were playing with it and it went off.”

The gun turned out to be reported stolen.

The teens were cited for reckless discharge of a firearm, possession of a loaded firearm in a vehicle, and possession of a stolen firearm.

The victim was treated at UC Davis Medical Center.

 

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