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Crime Report: Laptop stolen in home burglary found in port-a-potty next door

Crescenta Valley Sheriff’s Station
A computer was the only item believed to be missing in an early morning burglary of a Harter Lane home. It’s been restored to its owner.
(File / La Cañada Valley Sun)

Nov. 5

Burglary: 5200 block of Harter Lane, La Cañada. Sheriff’s deputies responding to a 3:10 a.m. burglar alarm arrived at the property to find a security gate open and a rear door to the home pried open. Entering the house, they saw that an alarm panel had been ripped off a wall and left sitting on a kitchen counter. Also on the counter was a wireless computer mouse but no computer. None of the rooms appeared to have been ransacked or even touched. No intruders were found on the site, so deputies then turned their attention to a neighboring property where a construction project is ongoing. There, in a portable restroom, the found a laptop computer that was still on. Suspecting it might have come from the burglarized house, the computer was carried back to it and set down on the kitchen counter where a deputy was able to control it with the wireless mouse that had been left behind. The responding deputies had noticed a black Ford SUV traveling southbound on Angeles Crest Highway while they were northbound on the highway en route to the burglar alarm call. Using department resources, they learned that vehicle was registered to an Altadena address, so they asked for help from the Altadena station, but the SUV could not be immediately located by their personnel.

Attempted theft by false pretenses: 2400 block of Florencita Drive W, Montrose. A sheriff’s office in Pendleton, Ore. reported a woman there had been instructed to send cash to a Montrose address to pay for bogus computer security services. The victim said a caller had told her she’d purchased a computer security program years ago but still owed the company money for its services. She was instructed to take an unspecified amount of cash out of her bank account and send it via FedEx overnight. She withdrew the cash and took it to a FedEx office, where a representative advised her not to send cash. So she called the scammer back and was told to hide the cash in some books and overnight them. Still trusting the person, she hollowed out some phone books, hid the cash inside them and sent them out via FedEx on Oct. 31. It was after they were sent that she thought she might have been scammed. When the police became involved they traced the package to Tennessee and were able to intercept it there on Nov. 2 and have it sent back to the victim.

Nov. 6

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Burglary: 2200 block of Del Mar Road, La Crescenta. A man reported that a framed antique flag from the Spanish American War and a historic letter that was also with the frame were stolen from the wall in his kitchen, where the family heirloom had been hanging for more than 30 years. He said the last time he recalled seeing it was on Nov. 3, and he noticed it missing on Nov. 5. No one else has a key to his home, so he does not know how anyone could have taken it.

Vandalism: 2300 block of Crescent Avenue, Montrose. A man reported that someone scratched both sides and the tailgate of his 2018 Chevy Silverado, which he’d left parked on the street overnight.

Forgery: 3200 block of Foothill Boulevard, La Crescenta. The Palm Springs Police Department notified the Crescenta Valley Sheriff’s Station that a Palm Springs resident had learned from US Bank that funds had been fraudulently withdrawn from her account on Sept. 10 and Sept. 11. The withdrawals had been made at one of the bank’s branches in Long Beach and one on Foothill Boulevard in La Crescenta.

Identity theft: 3100 block of Foothill Boulevard, La Crescenta. A man discovered that someone had used his personal identification to gain access to his business checking account, then made three withdrawals from it, all in the same unspecified amount, between Sept. 20 and Oct. 6.

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Nov. 7

Theft: 1800 block of Foothill Boulevard, La Cañada. A woman reported someone stole her Marc Jacobs leather purse, which she’d left on the passenger seat of her SUV while she watched a child’s soccer game. She said that at 3:45 p.m. she parked in a lot directly in front of the park where the game was being played and left the vehicle unlocked. When she returned to it at 4:50 p.m. the purse was gone. In it were her driver’s license, cash, three debit cards, two credit cards and a Samsung cellphone.

Nov. 8

Vehicle burglary: 2300 block of Caldero Lane, Montrose. Sometime between 9 p.m. Nov. 11 and 7 a.m. Nov. 8 someone shattered the driver’s side passenger window of a 2013 Honda Fit that had been left parked and secured in the carport area of the victim’s apartment complex. A purse that had been in the trunk area of the vehicle was stolen.

Petty theft: 900 block of Foothill Boulevard, La Cañada. A woman reported that while she was shopping between 12:45 and 1:15 p.m. Nov. 8 someone stole her leather wallet out of her purse. She recalled that while she was on one of the store’s aisles she was approached by a Latina who began asking her random questions about items on display on that aisle. In retrospect, she thinks the woman might have been distracting her so someone else could steal the wallet, which contained cash, her driver’s license, miscellaneous credit cards and a medical ID card. The victim received an alert advising her someone had used one of her stolen credit cards to unsuccessfully attempt a purchase at a Nordstrom store.

Nov. 11

Grand theft: 2500 block of Montrose Avenue, Montrose. Someone stole the catalytic converter off of a 2004 Honda CRV that had been left parked on the street overnight.

Compiled from reports on file at the Crescenta Valley Sheriff’s Station.

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