Few of the residents at the Griffith Park Apartments and Dude Ranch
knew much about the man in Unit 225, even though he lived there for
more than seven years.
Jorge Beeton, 47, died Thursday of multiple gunshot wounds after
he held off Glendale and Burbank police departments’ special response
teams with a semiautomatic assault rifle for nearly five hours.
Authorities were trying to determine Friday if Beeton’s wounds were
self-inflicted or from police gunfire.
Gunfire was reported shortly after 11 a.m. Thursday by residents,
two of whom were pinned down by gunfire and had to be rescued by
Glendale Police officers. The two Glendale Police officers later had
to be rescued by the department’s special response team, which
exchanged gunfire with Beeton to cover the officers’ escape. The
complex is at 400 Paula Ave.
The California Highway Patrol closed the north- and southbound
lanes of the Golden State (5) Freeway between Western and Alameda
avenues, snarling traffic throughout city streets in Glendale and
Burbank during the standoff. A portion of the Ventura (134) Freeway
was also closed, along with Sonora Avenue between Garden and
Fairfield streets. The department’s crisis negotiation team tried to
communicate with Beeton by phone and bullhorn without success and
finally shot 12 canisters of tear gas into the apartment. When
officers entered the apartment after 4 p.m., they found Beeton dead
on the floor, Glendale Police Chief Randy Adams said Thursday.
Standing in front of a stucco wall pocked with bullet holes, one
of the building’s owners, Michael Eng, said Friday that Beeton was a
nice person who usually paid his rent on time.
“When I first rented the apartment to him, he had really good
credit -- over 40 lines of credit, including cars and real estate,”
Eng said. “In seven years, he was never late turning in the rent. He
was more of a loner, and there was no way to tell he was tripping
Eng said Beeton had become more unruly as a tenant. Beeton left
music on loud, left his trash outside and refused to pay his last two
months’ rent. He last spoke to Beeton about a month and a half ago,
The building’s residents now have to repair their windows, doors,
walls and cars hit by gunfire, as well as struggle with the lack of
hot water until gas is restored to the building. The gas was turned
off when police officers prepared to use tear gas Thursday, building
manager Lesley Carter said.
Beeton worked for Pinkerton Security Inc., Eng said, and was
licensed to carry a firearm. Before police sealed Beeton’s apartment,
Eng said he saw seven guns, including one automatic gun.
“This is actually a quiet building,” Eng said. “Knowing him and
knowing he was a quasi-cop -- this was unforeseeable. You would never
Gary Bliski was reportedly the only resident who talked to Beeton
on a regular basis, but Bliski said he didn’t even know him that
“I would talk to him over laundry on Sunday mornings,” Bliski
said. “We would talk about the stresses of living and working in Los
Angeles. We were just neighbors who saw each other.”
Beeton seemed to be a quiet, hardworking man, Bliski said.
“He never struck me as a violent man,” Bliski said. “He struck me
as a guy who worked long hours with the goal of getting out of the
Beeton could have killed a lot of people if he had wanted to,
“It’s amazing no one got hurt,” he said. “He could have hit horses
if he wanted -- if he wanted to kill somebody.”
Bliski said he hadn’t seen Beeton in at least a month because he
did his laundry elsewhere.
“I kinda wish I had,” Bliski said. “You think sometimes you could
make a difference. Obviously, you couldn’t in this case.”