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Crime Report: Vehicle taken, crashed by drinking companion; 2 thefts and death threat conveyed by phone

Crime Report: Vehicle taken, crashed by drinking companion; 2 thefts and death threat conveyed by phone
Crimes during the last full week of February included criminal threats, disturbing the peace, theft, forgery and attempted burglary. (File Photo)

Feb. 19

Criminal threats: 3900 block of Chevy Chase Drive. A man told deputies he hired a business in December 2016 to install a custom home fireplace at his secondary residence in Los Angeles, agreeing to pay some up front and the remainder when the job was complete. When he was unsatisfied with the outcome, however, he refused to pay the remaining balance and was sued by the business. In December 2017, he received a call from a man named "Edward" saying if he didn't pay the balance on that job, he "would find him and kill him." In late January, the homeowner was at the residence with construction workers when an unknown male approached, identified himself as "Edward" and began cursing and yelling at the victim to pay the debt owned or he would inflict great bodily harm on him. The construction workers intervened, and the suspect left. He told deputies he received several threatening texts from the same man earlier that day, indicating he would be killed if he failed to pay, and decided to report the incidents.

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Feb. 20

Disturbing the peace: 900 block of Foothill Boulevard. A man said he was inside a business the day before at around 7 p.m., standing in line with his German shepherd "protection dog" waiting to purchase items when an elderly Asian female bumped into him and stepped on his dog's paw. When he told her to watch where she was walking, an Asian male in his mid-20s, who'd been with the woman, aggressively walked toward him and began yelling at him. In a fighting stance, he challenged the dog owner to a fight. When the man attempted to leave the line, the suspect followed him and continued to yell at him. The victim threatened to call the authorities, and the man and woman left the store, in an unknown direction.

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Theft by false pretenses: 700 block of Starlight Heights Drive. A woman reported a man pretending to be from the Orange County Sheriff's Department left a phone message, saying her husband had a warrant and owed money. When she called back to tell the man her husband was deceased, he hung up. She received another message on her phone from a man, whose voice sounded different from the first caller, identifying himself as being from the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department. This caller claimed she had a warrant and needed to pay a fine to clear it up. When she called him back, he said she needed to pay with a Green Dot money card and advised her to remain on the phone until the transaction was complete. She drove to an ATM to withdraw funds, then drove to a location and purchased the cards. When she read him the numbers on the cards, he told her she owed even more money for another fee. She then became suspicious and looked up "police warrant scams" on her cellphone and saw results resembling her situation.

Feb. 21

Grand theft, unlocked vehicle: 900 block of Foothill Boulevard. A woman told deputies she parked her unlocked 2017 Honda Odyssey in a parking lot the day before at around 4:30 p.m., leaving her 9-year-old son in the backseat and two purses on the front seat. She got back into the car at around 5:05 p.m. and drove home to Altadena. There, she noticed only one purse was on the front seat. Thinking she may have left it at work earlier, she checked the office but it wasn't there. She asked her son if he saw her place it in the car, and he told her he'd seen a male Asian "not young or old" wearing glasses and an all black suit approach the vehicle and look inside while the son was inside the vehicle. The man opened the front passenger door and grabbed the missing purse before returning to his vehicle and driving out of view. The son confessed he'd been playing on his cellphone and hadn't noticed the incident until the suspect shut the door and ran away. He said he didn't tell his mother sooner, because he'd forgotten about it by the time she'd returned. The stolen Marc Jacobs purse contained a wallet with several thousand dollars in business earnings to be deposited, four credit cards, a checkbook and a notebook containing numerous computer passwords and account numbers.

Feb. 22

Forgery; possession of methamphetamine and marijuana concentrate, paraphernalia: 1500 block of Foothill Boulevard. A deputy was working at La Cañada High School when he got a call from a business owner saying a white male with facial hair and wearing a hat had made a transaction using counterfeit currency hours before, at around 6:50 a.m., and was currently parked on the wrong side of Alta Canyada Road across the street from his business in a 1999 Dodge Ram pickup truck. The deputy arrived on scene and asked the man, 38-year-old Glendale resident Brian Lee Davis, to exit the vehicle. A pat-down and search resulted in the seizure of counterfeit bills and a check which appeared to be fraudulent. During a search of Davis' towed vehicle, the deputy recovered scissors, paper cutters, hydrogen peroxide and other tools consistent with the production of counterfeit money, in addition to two two-way radios, a black bandanna and pen flashlight, two cellphones and a stack of off-white paper. A backpack on the backseat contained marijuana concentrate "wax," while a plastic bag containing methamphetamine was found in a sunglasses compartment near the vehicle's roof. Numerous computer cables, a scanner/printer and a USB stick were also recovered from the vehicle. The suspect said he believed he got the counterfeit bills he'd used to purchase gas and a pack of cigarettes from a bar the night before. During booking, it was discovered Davis had a $25,000 warrant out of Rancho Cucamonga. Deputies noted a similar incident had occurred on Feb. 15 at a Domino's Pizza restaurant in La Crescenta.

Feb. 23

Theft by false pretenses: 800 block of Foothill Boulevard. A store manager got a call from the previous night manager, who told her the day before at around 10:30 p.m. he'd received a phone call from a man identifying himself as "Billy," a loss prevention manager at the location and saying counterfeit bills had been exchanged at the store. As part of his alleged "investigation" into the matter, he advised the night manager to remove all the money from the safe and tell the employees to go home, stating he was watching them via the store's security cameras. The suspect then ordered the manager to go to several La Cañada locations (ARCO, Ralphs and 7-Eleven were named, according to the informant) and purchase four Visa gift cards. The manager was then instructed to read the card numbers to the man on the phone. He did so and, refusing to buy any more, hung up the phone. When interviewed, the night manager said the suspect told him he was with "James," a U.S. Marshal, and the manager heard the voice of another man on the phone. They instructed him to cooperate or be fired. In the process of purchasing the gift cards, the manager at Ralphs refused the transaction because it sounded suspicious. After he'd hung up with the suspects, he returned the rest of the money to the store safe and advised his boss of what had occurred.

Feb. 24

Taking a vehicle without owner's consent: 400 block of Foothill Boulevard. Deputies received a call that an unknown driver in a 2004 Toyota Tacoma was traveling at the intersection of Foothill Boulevard and Angeles Crest Highway between 10:30 and 11:30 p.m. when the vehicle collided into a wall, causing damage to the vehicle and to nearby private property. The driver then parked the damaged vehicle in a parking structure and left on foot in an unknown direction. Deputies determined the car had jumped a curb and collided into a light pole, traffic sign and retaining wall. An informant said she saw a white male about 40 to 50 years old wearing a red Hawaiian shirt in the vicinity at the time of the incident, but did not see the driver. She said she found it suspicious since no businesses in the area were open. Another unit contacted the owner and was led to a man in a red Hawaiian shirt walking on the south side of Foothill just west of Chevy Chase Drive, two blocks from the scene. The man was determined to be the registered owner of the vehicle. He told deputies he'd driven his truck to a bar and grill on the 400 block of Foothill Boulevard to meet a woman from Van Nuys named Natalie, whom he'd been seeing socially. He'd consumed about six beers and got into a verbal argument with Natalie, who'd also been drinking. He decided to leave, but feeling he was too impaired to drive, left his vehicle there and began to walk home. That's when he'd gotten the call from the other deputy. He said he believed Natalie may have taken a spare key from behind the truck's front license plate and taken the vehicle without his knowledge to get back at him for leaving the bar. A manager at the bar recalled having seen a woman matching Natalie's description drinking with two male adults, but not the vehicle owner. The vehicle was towed, and the owner said it seemed several items were missing. In a phone interview, Natalie said she'd never seen the victim socially and denied meeting him at the bar. She declined to give her personal information and hung up on the officer.

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Feb. 25

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Attempted burglary, residence: 4800 block of Hampton Road. A woman reported hearing someone knocking on her door and ringing her doorbell at around 11 a.m. She saw it was her nephew, 35-year-old Glendale resident Peter Randall Razzano, whom she said had broken into her house in the past to support an alleged drug habit. When she refused to let him in, he walked to the south side of the house, jumped a 6-foot wall leading to her backyard and carried a nearby ladder to her patio. He climbed up toward a computer room. She ran to the room and saw him pulling the screen off the window. She shouted at him, and he climbed back down the ladder. He left, entering a silver Toyota Camry with California plates and heading eastbound on Houseman Street. She said she saw an unknown elderly man driving the vehicle. Deputies located the vehicle and detained the two men. Razzano was arrested and asked why he'd been at the home. He said he was checking on his aunt's welfare. When she didn't answer the door he climbed up the ladder, fearing for her safety. He denied ever stealing from her, and said the driver was a friend who'd given him a ride. The driver said he was a friend and knew nothing of the man's intent to enter the home.

Compiled by Sara Cardine

Twitter: @SaraCardine

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