Sacto 9-1-1
November 1, 2013
Woodland teen accused of vehicle theft after high-speed chase

A 14-year-old girl was taken in custody, accused of vehicle theft and reckless driving, after leading police on a vehicle chase through Woodland this morning.

Officers were dispatched about 11:42 a.m. to 250 Buckeye St. regarding an individual recklessly driving a red Mitsubishi Eclipse in the area. An officer spotted the vehicle in the area of Cottonwood and West Cross streets and learned upon checking the license plate that it had been reported stolen.

Before the officer could approach the Mitsubishi, the driver sped off, according to a Police Department news release. The officer gave chase, using emergency lights and siren.

October 22, 2013
Police decline to release name of 12-year-old Sparks school shooter

Landsberry Michael Master Sgt.jpg2013102_ha_SPARKS_SHOOTING0053.JPGBy Kim Minguh
kminugh@sacbee.com

SPARKS, Nev. -- Sparks police said today they have no plans to release the name of the 12-year-old boy who opened fire at a middle school Monday "out of respect for his grieving parents."

"They are grieving parents and are going through a very challenging, difficult time," said Deputy Chief Tom Miller.

Monday's shooting at Sparks Middle School left a popular math teacher, Michael Landsberry, dead and two 12-year-old students wounded. They are in stable condition and expected to survive.

October 14, 2013
Coroner identifies teen killed in S. Sacramento shooting

The Sacramento County Coroner's office has released the name of a teenager killed by gunfire in broad daylight on Saturday.

The dead teen has been identified as Javillion Ward, 15, of Sacramento.

According to Sacramento police, the shooting was reported at 1:58 p.m. Saturday at a shopping center parking lot in the 4500 block of Mack Road near Franklin Boulevard. The incident started when a fight broke out between two groups. The fight escalated into a shooting when one person began firing, said Officer Doug Morse, Sacramento Police spokesman.

September 25, 2013
Folsom man pleads guilty to possessing child pornography

A Folsom man pleaded guilty to possessing child pornography Wednesday, U.S. Attorney Benjamin Wagner said.

Daniel Ratner, 45, planted hidden video cameras in his house, recording minors entering the shower, changing clothes and sitting on the toilet, according to federal prosecutors. Officials found 37 movie files and approximately 100 images of child pornography during a search of Ratner's computers.

Ratner is scheduled to be sentenced Dec. 11 and faces a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison, a $250,000 fine and a life term of supervised release.

August 2, 2013
Placer County sheriff receives funds to combat underage drinking

The Placer County Sheriff's Office has received a $100,000 state grant to stem drinking by minors and prevent alcohol sales to intoxicated adults.

The grant from the California Department of Beverage Control will target establishments that sell alcohol to minors or obviously drunken adults. Minors working with police will check whether stores are selling alcohol to people under age 21.

Police departments in Auburn, Lincoln and Rocklin will work with the sheriff's department's in the effort to halt sales to minors.

The grant will also be used to increase awareness among teachers and parents of alcohol-related crimes involving minors.

In addition, two training sessions will be held for businesses that have alcohol licenses. During the sessions, a review of rules and regulations governing alcohol sales will be provided.

July 11, 2013
Sacramento County slaps drinking ban on Saturday's 'Rafting Gone Wild'

Sacramento County officials have decided to ban alcohol on a portion of the American River this Saturday to prevent any risk to the public from the upcoming "Rafting Gone Wild" event.

In 2011, a sandbar known as Gilligan's Island, was a main gathering point for drunken revelers during Rafting Gone Wild. Last year, more than 3,000 people showed up at the event, with 23 people arrested.

Witnesses described deputies and rangers having difficulty keeping up with the large and chaotic crowd. Fights erupted on the riverbanks and rocks were thrown at rafters, they said.

June 27, 2013
Caught on tape: Teen booked for stinging pepper spray incident at Sacramento mall

PANTOJA, JUAN MIGUEL-19 (1).JPGA Vacaville man has been arrested for the deployment of pepper spray at a Sacramento mall that left some people feeling the sting of the aerosol agent.

Juan Miguel Pantoja, 19, (pictured) was arrested Wednesday after Sacramento police detectives served at search warrant at his home in Vacaville. He was taken into custody without incident and booked into Sacramento County Jail.

Sacramento police reported that about 6 p.m. June 1 several people were in an argument at Arden Fair mall that culminated when one person used pepper spray. Those involved fled the scene but other innocent people in the area felt the effects of the spray.

At the time, mall security chief Steve Reed said the incident occurred in the area of the food court and that he had strong video evidence. The mall boasts an extensive network of security cameras.

The spray irritates the eyes, causing tears and pain.

Here is surveillance video of the incident.

June 13, 2013
Sacramento police say avoid 'Apple picking' by being a smart cell phone user

DeAngelo Trujillo, 18.JPGCell phones taken in Sacramento and Roseville have been recovered this week because tracking features enabled the owners to zero in on the stolen items.

However, not all cell phone thefts result in a return of the devices to their owners. Authorities say avoiding being a victim can be as easy as keeping cell phones in pockets or purses on the street.

Also, when speaking on a phone in a public place, don't be so distracted by telephone conversation or web searches that you don't see potential thieves.

June 6, 2013
Two Davis teens taken into custody for alleged rape

Two teenage boys were taken into custody by Davis police Wednesday on suspicion of raping an 11-year-old girl, authorities said.

The boys, ages 13 and 14, were taken to Yolo County Juvenile Hall. The three minors lived together at FamiliesFirst, a group home on the 2100 block of 5th Street in Davis.

Police said the sexual assault did not occur on the property of Families First, though other youth from the home were reportedly present during the alleged rape. The youths were not supervised by FamiliesFirst staff during the incident.

May 11, 2013
Two people injured in drive-by shooting in Oak Park

Two people received non-lethal injuries this afternoon in a drive-by shooting at 4th Avenue and San Jose Way, Sacramento police said.

Sacramento Police spokesman Officer Doug Morse said police cordoned off the area and were interviewing witnesses after the shooting, which occurred about 1:30 p.m.

"We are trying to identify those involved," Morse said, describing the case as "an ongoing investigation."

The identities of the victims were not immediately available. Both were talking to authorities and were being treated at a nearby hospital.

May 1, 2013
UPDATE: Police say rowdy teens beat 79-year-old Roseville man

Nunley, Matthew download.jpgClements, Christopher.jpegPolice said an elderly man who told some rowdy teens to take their noisy activity elsewhere was beaten in front of his Roseville home.

At about 12:30 a.m. Tuesday, police and fire personnel responded to the assault in the 900 block of Douglas Boulevard. According to a police activity report, the 79-year-old man had exited his house to ask a group of rowdy teens to move along.

Instead, the five teens charged the man, knocking him to the ground. They allegedly kicked and hit him.

April 28, 2013
Calaveras County manhunt for child killer continues

Calaveras County authorities are searching today for a man presumed armed and dangerous in connection with Saturday's murder of an 8-year-old girl in a Valley Springs home.

Sheriff's deputies, partnering with other law enforcement, are gathering evidence at the scene and plan a press conference at 3 p.m. to update the public on the case.

Residents in the surrounding area were told to lock their doors while officers investigate the homicide at a home on rural Rippon Road. Calaveras County sheriff's deputy Jim Macedo told news outlets that a quarter-mile perimeter has been set up around the house, and officers are going door to door searching for the suspected killer.

April 19, 2013
Woodland officers arrest teens for drinking and rock throwing

Teens initially suspected of drinking in a Woodland alley face more serious charges after police said rocks were thrown at them in the course of their investigation.

Officers were called to an alley near Summertree Lane about 5 p.m. Wednesday for a report of teens drinking. When they arrived, most of the teens scattered.

Two, however, were detained for being in possession of alcohol and public intoxication. As officers went about conducting an investigation, one of the detained teens became combative with officers, according to police. As officers struggled to control the 16-year-old boy, other teens returned and began throwing rocks at the officers.

Backup officers responded and one of the suspected rock-throwers, a 16-year-old boy, was arrested. Two 14-year-olds were also arrested, one for obstructing an officer and another for being drunk.

A police press release said that after being cleared at the hospital, they were booked into Yolo County Juvenile Hall on various charges that include assault, obstructing an officer, battery on an officer and minor in possession of alcohol.

March 31, 2013
Sunrise Mall evacuated in Saturday bomb scare

Sunrise Mall was evacuated Saturday afternoon, and the bomb squad was called in, after a suitcase was found sitting unattended in one of the walkways, Citrus Heights police said.

The suitcase turned out to be empty, and a 15-year-old girl was eventually taken into custody by police for intentionally causing the scare, according to police.

Sunrise Mall security officers saw the suitcase placed in the middle of a walkway in front of two stores at about 2:25 p.m. Mall security immediately notified Citrus Heights Police Department and evacuated the shopping center on Sunrise Boulevard.

The Sacramento County sheriff's department Explosive Ordnance Disposal unit investigated whether there was explosive material in the luggage and found the suitcase empty.

The teenager eventually came forward and claimed ownership of the suitcase, Citrus Heights police reports said. Officers said the girl placed the suitcase in the walkway with intent to cause fear and took her into custody.

March 3, 2013
Rocklin teacher with alleged 'party pad' for teens out on bail

susp.jpgA Rocklin middle school teacher is out on bail, following his arrest on suspicion of supplying marijuana and alcohol to minors.

Ian Runciman, 38, was booked on felony counts of supplying marijuana to minors and keeping a place where drugs are used. The eighth-grade math teacher at Granite Oaks Middle School also is accused of contributing to the delinquency of a minor.

Runciman was booked into Placer County Jail on Friday, after a parent complained to the school about the suspected criminal activity. Bail was set at $25,000. Runciman posted bail and was released over the weekend.

February 19, 2013
Teens arrested after guns found at two Natomas Unified schools

Police credit alert school employees with the arrest of two teenage boys after loaded guns were found today at two schools in the Natomas Unified School District.

The two incidents, one at Discovery High School and the other at Natomas Middle School, do not appear to be related, said Sacramento police spokeswoman Officer Michele Gigante.

Officers were called to Discovery High School, a continuation school at 3400 Fong Ranch Road, about 10:10 a.m. Gigante said a 16-year-old student had been called to the principal's office on an administrative matter. Before he went to the office, he dropped off his backpack in the library. That attracted the attention of a school employee, who checked the backpack and found a loaded handgun.

February 5, 2013
Loomis teeangers arrested in Sunday liquor store burglary

Placer County sheriff's detectives have arrested two Loomis teenagers suspected of burglarizing the Stone Tree Liquor and Deli early Sunday.

The boys, ages 15 and 17, are accused of breaking into the liquor store on Taylor Road at 1:40 a.m. The intruders were captured on videotape breaking the glass front doors, then entering the store and taking cigarettes and alcohol. A deputy who spoke with the boys in the area of the store earlier that evening recognized them in the video, according to a Sheriff's Department news release.

Detectives followed up on leads and arrested the youths, who were booked into Placer County Juvenile Hall in Auburn.

January 23, 2013
Rancho police, sheriff's deputies begin 'Adopt-A-School' program that includes campus visits

Rancho Cordova police and Sacramento County East Division sheriff's deputies will become a larger presence in some schools through a bonding program now underway.

The "Adopt-A-School" program endeavors to strengthen ties between law enforcement, schools and the community. The effort, which began last week, focuses on 19 schools.

Officers will be making stops during regular patrol duties to visit campuses. They will attempt to cultivate working relationships with students, teachers, classified staff and principals, according to a Rancho Cordova police press release.

In addition, officers will conduct presentations about the role of the police officer, emphasize the importance of class work and stress the importance of staying away from drugs and crime.

The program supplements the police presence at schools that already have School Resource Officers. Other responsibilities of officers in the Adopt-A-School program may include assisting school staff in counseling sessions and serving as mentors to students.

Schools involved in the program include Cordova Gardens, Cordova Meadows, Cordova Villa, Navigator, Peter J. Shields, Rancho Cordova Elementary, White Rock, Williamson, Sunrise, A.M. Winn, Abraham Lincoln, Mather Heights, Sierra Enterprise, James W. Marshall, Sequoia, Isador Cohen, Golden Empire, Gold River Discovery and O.W. Erlewine.

January 4, 2013
Report: Body of teen missing since New Year's at Tahoe casino is found

The body of a missing Petaluma 19 year old, who was last seen in South Lake Tahoe around New Year's Eve, has been found this morning, according to the Reno Gazette Journal.

The newspaper reported that Alyssa Byrne's body was discovered in a snowbank off the side of Pioneer Trail in El Dorado County by a utility worker.

A Douglas County sheriff's spokesman said there were no signs of trauma or foul play.

Further details on Byrne's death were not immediately available.

Sheriff's deputies in northern Nevada had offered a $1,000 reward in the search for Byrne, who was last seen alive on New Year's Eve at a Lake Tahoe casino.

Her father, Kevin Byrne, said she was staying with friends at the Horizon Casino Resort in Stateline, Nev. She last was seen on the casino floor shortly after midnight.

Byrne said his daughter and three friends checked into the Horizon and texted her mother on Saturday and texted both parents on Sunday.

Read the Reno Gazette story here.

Watch a video report here.

December 20, 2012
Woodland's Pioneer High locked down but no gun found

A report of a person at Pioneer High School with a gun this morning turned out to be false.

Woodland police responded about 8 a.m. to a report of a person with a gun on the high school campus, 1400 Pioneer Ave. The school was placed in lockdown.

While police were en route to the school, school administration employees reported the person in question was being cooperative. Upon arrival, officers found that the 17-year-old Woodland resident never had a firearm but was in possession of a knife.

The teen, who was not a Pioneer High School student, did not attempt to assault any students or staff, police said.

The teen was arrested on suspicion of possession of a weapon on a school campus.

December 13, 2012
Woman gets 15 years to life for murder of step-daughter

A woman already doing time for strangling and beating her 6-year-old step-daughter had a life sentenced added to her term as a result of her no-contest plea to a murder charge filed after the little girl died of her injuries six years after the initial attack.

Weili Kao, 43, received the added 15-to-life prison term Wednesday from Sacramento Superior Court Judge Patrick Marlette for killing Truly Lo.

Kao beat the little girl and grabbed her by the neck while disciplining her on May 11, 2004. The girl fell into a persistent vegetative state and Kao was convicted and sentenced the next year for felony child abuse.

Sacramento prosecutors filed murder charges agaisnt Kao after Lo died on Dec. 21, 2010. Kao entered her plea to the second-degree murder charge on Dec. 3.

December 11, 2012
42 citations issued in Placer County for supplying booze to minors

In the past five months, Placer County police and sheriff's department personnel have used a state grant to crack down on underage drinking.

A total of 27 citations have been issued for selling booze to minors. In addition, 15 people have been cited for buying alcohol for a minor.

The concerted effort to stem underage drinking was funded with a grant of about $100,000 from the state Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control.

The primary objective was to reduce youth access to alcohol, statistics showing that minors generally have a higher rate of drunken driving crashes than adults, stated an ABC press release.

October 30, 2012
Bella Vista High student reportedly injured in accidental shooting on way to school

A Bella Vista High School student accidentally shot himself in the leg this morning while en route to school with a gun, according to the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department.

The Sheriff's Department received a call from the high school, at 8301 Madison Ave. in Fair Oaks, shortly before 9 a.m., reporting that a 16-year-old male student had brought a loaded gun to the campus. Staff members detained the student until law enforcement officers arrived.

Sheriff's officials said the incident was handled by a Safe Schools deputy, working under contract with the San Juan Unified School District.

October 24, 2012
U.S. Army officer convicted of sex crime in Sacramento

An Army lieutenant colonel was convicted Tuesday by a Sacramento County jury, after a January incident when he propositioned a 13-year-old girl walking to a Land Park school to perform a sexual act.

Lt. Col. Jason Shepard, 41, was found guilty of solicitation of a minor with the intent to commit an act of oral copulation, and of annoying and molesting a child.

Shepard was based at Aberdeen Proving Ground in Maryland and was in Sacramento on military business at the Army Depot on Fruitridge Road at the time of the offense.

October 23, 2012
Attempted carjacking suspect nabbed in Rocklin after abandoning baby in gridlock

A Sacramento man was arrested on suspicion of attempted carjacking and child endangerment in Rocklin Monday afternoon, after leaving a baby in a stalled vehicle in traffic on Sierra College Boulevard.

Alan W. Rose, 26, was booked into Placer County Jail. He reportedly was a passenger in a sedan at Sierra College and Ridge Park Drive, when he grabbed the keys from the ignition, causing the car to stall, and exited the car.

He left behind his girlfriend, the driver of the car, and their infant inside the car, according to Rocklin Police Lt. Lon Milka. Milka said the speed limit along that stretch is 50 miles per hour.

September 16, 2012
Juvenile father arrested in Woodland baby kidnapping

A 16-year-old father was arrested today for investigation of kidnapping his 5-week-old baby from the child's mother, police said.

Sgt. Steve Sexton reported that the kidnapping occurred Saturday night at a home in the 1200 block of Alice Street in Woodland.

Police responded to the call shortly 10:30 p.m. Witnesses told police that the suspect argued with the 16-year-old mother of the baby before forcibly taking the child and leaving in a vehicle.

After about 45 minutes, the suspect returned the child to the mother and fled again before police arrived, authorities said.

When the suspect came back a third time, shortly before 1 a.m. today, he was arrested by waiting officers. He was booked into Yolo County Juvenile Hall.

September 13, 2012
Boy accused of beating mom appears in court

By Cynthia Hubert
chubert@sacbee.com

A boy accused of beating his disabled mother with an electrical cord made his first appearance in court today, virtually swallowed by his chair as he sat next to his defense lawyer in Sacramento County Juvenile Court.

The Elk Grove youth, looking wide-eyed and younger than his 11 years, is facing charges of elder abuse and assault with a deadly weapon in connection with injuries to his mother. Police arrested him at school Monday after they investigated a report that he had physically abused his mother, who is 51 and suffers from disabling medical conditions. According to a police spokesman, the mother and son lived on their own in an Elk Grove home, where the son had primary responsibility for his mother's care.

Juvenile Court referee Natalie Lindsey appointed public defender Steven Garrett as the boy's attorney, and postponed his arraignment until Monday.

September 8, 2012
2 teens arrested in South Lake Tahoe burglary, vandalism

By Richard Chang
rchang@sacbee.com

Two male juveniles are in custody on suspicion of vandalism and burglary at an art supply store, South Lake Tahoe police said today.

Police said the suspects, ages 15 and 16, broke into the store Friday and stole $3,000 worth of spray paint and markers. Today, police received reports of buildings, signs and vehicles tagged with graffiti.

Police received a tip that led them to a residence on Silver Dollar Avenue, where they conducted a probation search and found two juveniles hiding in a closet as well as the stolen art supplies. Both suspects admitted to the burglary, and one admitted to tagging property, officials said

A third juvenile suspect is still at large, police said. Property damage is estimated to be in the thousands of dollars. Anyone with information about the case is asked to call South Lake Tahoe police at (530) 542-6100.

August 7, 2012
Teenager accused of lewd acts at Auburn day care center

A 14-year-old boy was arrested this afternoon by Placer County sheriff's detectives on suspicion of committing lewd and lascivious acts with a minor an Auburn-area day care center.

The center, Colored Pencils Preschool and Child Care,at 1335 Luther Road, was shut down today by the state Department of Social Services, according to a Sheriff's Department news release.

The boy, whose name has not been released because of his age, was taken into custody at the day care center. Officials said he is related to the preschool owner.

July 25, 2012
Placer deputies arrest social media party planner for contributing to delinquency of minors

fischer zachary c.JPGPlacer County sheriff's deputies said they have arrested a man who used Facebook to promote house parties where underage drinking was rampant.

Zachary C. Fischer, 19, was arrested on charges related to a large July 16 party in the 8200 block of Quartzite Circle in Granite Bay. When deputies arrived they found hundreds of young people under drinking age consuming alcohol.

Partygoers threw bottles at deputies when officers broke up the party. The person who lived at the home was arrested on suspicion of contributing to the delinquency of minors and one partygoer was arrested for suspicion of driving under the influence as he left the gathering.

July 25, 2012
County transitional program graduates 32 more ex-offenders

Thirty-two ex-offenders graduate today from a Sacramento County program that helps them transition back into society.

The program teaches ex-offenders to avoid conflict. Franklin Jones, a graduate of the Adult Day Reporting Center program, said he has learned how to make the right decisions and to avoid old habits.

"I now slow down and gather my thoughts while making choices, solving problems, dealing with situations," Jones said.

June 19, 2012
Ask Sacto 911 crime Q&A: What were circumstances in 1997 Elk Grove shooting death of teen?

Bee reporters answer questions about area crime news, trends and other issues.

QUESTION: Sometime in early 1997, a teenager named Andrew Hesser was shot and killed in Elk Grove. I believe the story at the time was that he was trying to break into a car. What exactly were the circumstances surrounding his death, and were charges ever filed against his killer?
Submitted by: Andy, Elk Grove

ANSWER: Andrew Hesser, 17 and a junior at Laguna Creek High School, was killed in March 1997 during an apparent burglary of a car belonging to a Sacramento County sheriff's deputy.

According to stories in The Bee, Deputy Sherman Watson found Hesser standing next to a parked car outside his Elk Grove home after he was awakened about 3 a.m. by the barking of dogs.

The deputy said he armed himself with a handgun and went outside intending to make an arrest. When he identified himself and told the youth not to move, Hesser reportedly turned and pointed a handgun at the deputy. Watson then fired one round, striking Hesser in the head, and three other youths who were with Hesser sped away in their car.

Investigating officers found next to Hesser a loaded handgun that Watson said he had inadvertently left in his vehicle. Also found nearby were other items taken from Watson's car.

The Sacramento County District Attorney's Office concluded that the shooting was a justifiable homicide, stating that it was reasonable for Watson to believe that Hesser intended to shoot and that his life was in danger.

Hesser's parents, Noel and Mary Hesser, publicly stated that they forgave Watson. Although they believed he had other options, they said they bore him no malice and and that they would not file any wrongful death suits against the deputy.

In a prepared statement, they said, "We would like it said that we do not want Andrew to be remembered for the last events of his life any more than the officer should be remembered for the moment of firing the gun."

June 13, 2012
Teenage driver arrested after pursuit, crash in Elk Grove

A teenage driver is in custody and another person has been taken to a hospital after a police pursuit in Elk Grove ended in a crash on Highway 99 near Sheldon Road.

Elk Grove police spokesman Officer Christopher Trim said that shortly before 5 p.m. officers attempted to stop a speeding black Toyota Camry westbound on Sheldon Road near Elk Grove-Florin Road. The driver of the Camry, later identified as a 17-year-old Sacramento resident, failed to stop and led police on a pursuit.

At one point, the driver cut through the WinCo supermarket parking lot, then headed eastbound on Sheldon. The driver then attempted to travel southbound on Highway 99, but because of the vehicle's speed, he was unable to navigate a turn. He lost control of the car and struck two other vehicles, a Ford SUV and a commuter van, before the Camry crashed and caught fire.

June 5, 2012
Second teen arrested in theft, killing of Woodland student's pig

A second 17-year-old has been arrested in connection with the theft and killing of a pig belonging to a Woodland High School student.

The Yolo County Sheriff's Office reported that the second youth, a Woodland High School student, was arrested Monday evening on suspicion of grand theft, felony animal cruelty and conspiracy to commit theft and animal cruelty. He was booked into Yolo County Juvenile Hall. Another 17-year-old was arrested in the case earlier Monday.

On Saturday, Woodland High School student Marika Osegueda, 17, reported that someone had taken her pig from the Laugenour Land Lab at 39839 County Road 17A in the Woodland area. Osegueda was raising the pig as part of the Future Farmers of America program.

June 4, 2012
Teen arrested in theft, killing of high school student's pig

A 17-year-old boy has been arrested in connection with the theft and killing of a pig that was being raised by a high school student as a Future Farmers of America project.

On Saturday, Woodland High School student Marika Osegueda, 17, reported that someone had taken her pig from the Laugenour Land Lab at 39839 County Road 17A in the Woodland area. Osegueda was raising the pig as part of the FFA program.

Investigating deputies found a bloody hand print on the gate leading to the missing pig's pen. The ground outside the pen was covered with blood, according to a Yolo County Sheriff's Office news release.

May 30, 2012
Teen accused of animal cruelty in burning of cat in West Sacramento

A 17-year-old boy has been arrested on suspicion of cruelty to animals in connection with an incident earlier this month in which a cat was set on fire in West Sacramento.

On May 2, a citizen reported a cat was on fire in the 100 block of Circle Street. Yolo County Animal Control officers responded and took the cat to the UC Davis Veterinary Hospital for treatment. The cat was later euthanized because of the severity of the burns.

Police said veterinarians treating the cat determined that an accelerant may have been used to set the cat on fire.

There were no witnesses on scene and no one came for ward with information, but police said the detective assigned to the case was able to establish leads that led to the teenager's arrest this morning.

May 25, 2012
Students arrested for Woodland middle school 'works bomb'

Two juveniles were arrested this afternoon after they allegedly placed a homemade explosive device in a school cafeteria trash can in Woodland.

At 12:22 p.m., a Woodland Police Department school resource officer was called to investigate an explosion at Douglass Middle School at 525 Granada Drive. School officials had already detained two boys, both students at the school, who were allegedly responsible for the explosion.

Police said the students created a "works bomb" and dropped in into a trash can in the cafeteria. The device is made of common household items that are placed in a plastic container and sealed. A chemical reaction occurs that releases gases, which eventually cause the plastic container to rupture, creating a loud noise, according to a Police Department news release.

May 14, 2012
Gunshots ring out last night in east Sacramento

Gunshots rattled an east Sacramento neighborhood last night but nobody was injured.

The shooting occurred near 38th Street and McKinley Boulevard about 8:45 p.m. Police were told by the victim that he was seated on the porch when a sedan pulled up in front of the house.

Two people got out of the car and then got back into the vehicle. The car then pulled up a few feet and the passenger got out and began shooting at the porch-sitting victim and the house.

Neither the man on the porch nor a person inside the home were injured. The victim was not completely cooperative, police said.

May 4, 2012
Sacramento Sheriff: New gang task force has seized 112 guns, made 124 arrests

In a news conference this afternoon, Sacramento County Sheriff Scott Jones formally introduced his new anti-gang "Impact Division," and announced preliminary results from the team's efforts.

impact guns 1.jpgSince the division began its work in January, gang detectives assigned to the division have seized more than 100 guns, some of which are pictured at left, and arrested nearly 125 suspects, Jones said.

In addition, deputies have seized 4.3 pounds of cocaine, 153 pounds of marijuana, 29 grams of heroin and almost a pound of methamphetamines, Jones said.

"Can I say we've beaten the gang problem? No," said Jones, flanked by commanders from partnering agencies. "We have a lot of work to do."

impact guns 3.jpgBut Jones said he has high expectations for the division and believes it is off to a strong start.

"Hopefully it gives people optimism we are taking the youth violence problem seriously," Jones said.

Last fall, the Sheriff's Department was awarded a $11.3 million grant from the U.S. Department of Justice's COPS Office. The money was to fund a collaborative anti-gang approach that Jones said he began crafting after he took office in 2010.

impact guns 2.jpgThe division is made up of 31 sheriff's employees and 10 officers from outside agencies. Those partnering with the Sheriff's Department are: Police departments from Elk Grove, Citrus Heights, Rancho Cordova and Galt; the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives; the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation's Special Service Unit; Immigration and Customs Enforcement; and homeland security.

Jones also announced a new tipline for information about gang-related activity. The tipline is also designed for youths who want help getting out of the gang life, Jones said. That number is (855) 2NO-GANG, or (855) 266-4264.

"It's never too late to turn around," Jones said.

To those who have no interest in changing their habits, Jones had a message: "We will find you, we will identify you, and we will arrest you."

The division has a three-pronged approach: gang suppression, intelligence and youth outreach. To read more about the Impact division, go here.

Photos show some of the guns seized by members of the Sacramento County Sheriff's Impact Division. Photo by Bee staff writer Kim Minugh.

April 19, 2012
Teenage offender back in custody after escape from hospital

A 15-year-old juvenile offender who escaped from a South Sacramento-area hospital Wednesday night has been captured.

The state Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation reports that the boy was taken into custody without incident about 2 a.m today by the department's special agents and has been returned to the N.A. Chaderjian Youth Correctional Facility in Stockton.

About 7 p.m. Wednesday, the teen struggled with staff members at Sierra Vista Hospital on Bruceville Road. He obtained keys, pushed his way past nurses and escaped from the hospital wearing only a gray hospital gown.

The youth was committed to the Division of Juvenile Justice from Kings County Juvenile Court with a conviction for first-degree burglary, according to a Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation news release. Corrections officials said he will be charged with escape.

April 18, 2012
State corrections agents search for juvenile escapee

Special agents from the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation are leading a search for a 15-year-old juvenile offender who escaped from Sierra Vista Hospital in the south Sacramento area earlier this evening.

About 7 p.m., the teen struggled with a staff member, obtained keys, pushed his way past nurses and escaped from the hospital at 8001 Bruceville Road wearing only a gray hospital gown.

The youth is described as Latino, with brown hair and eyes, weighing approximately 160 pounds, and with a distinctive scar on his left shoulder.

April 18, 2012
Fraternities and sororities pledge to help prevent alcohol-marred Picnic Day

picnic.jpg
Members of fraternities and sororities at UC Davis have signed a pledge this year designed to curb out-of-control drinking on Picnic Day this Saturday.

Among the points in the 10-point covenant signed by 51 of 75 Greek organizations are pledges not to serve alcohol before noon and refraining from drinking games.

"The covenant demonstrates that we are doing our part," said Matt Chemin, president of the Interfraternity Council.

Picnic Day typically draws 75,000 people. The on-campus open house, now in its 98th year, is a wholesome event featuring a parade, music, educational exhibits, animal events and sport.

April 13, 2012
Update: Coroner releases ID of man killed in Orangevale shootout with deputies

The Sacramento County Coroner's office has released the name of the man found dead last night in an Orangevale home after an exchange of gunfire with Sacramento County sheriff's deputies serving a search warrant.

He was identified as Dennis Dean, 33, of Orangevale.

Sheriff's spokesman Deputy Jason Ramos said narcotics officers went to the house in the 9100 block of Kendrick Way, north of Madison Avenue and east of Hazel Avenue, to serve the warrant Thursday afternoon.

March 28, 2012
Inmate stabbed at California State Prison, Sacramento

Officials at California State Prison, Sacramento, are investigating the stabbing of a 30-year-old inmate this afternoon.

Melvin Kibbee was found unresponsive on his cell floor about 2 p.m., minutes after a yard recall at the B Facilities Main Exercise Yard at the Folsom prison. Kibbee was taken by ambulance to an area hospital with three puncture-type wounds to the left side of his chest, according to a California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation news release.

Officials said there are no suspects. Inmates assigned to the housing unit where Kibbee was found are being searched for evidence and investigators are interviewing possible witnesses.

March 27, 2012
Galt police receive grant to tackle underage drinking

The Galt Police Department has received a $2,500 grant from state Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control to help prevent underage drinking.

The funds will be used to conduct minor decoy and "shoulder tap" operations, according to a Police Department news release.

The minor decoy program targets problems associated with the unlawful purchase and consumption of alcoholic beverages by youths younger than 21. The shoulder tap program is aimed at adults who furnish alcoholic beverages to minors.

March 12, 2012
Rocklin police execute search warrants in burglary investigation

Rocklin police executed search warrants over the weekend that resulted in the arrests of two teenagers for burglary.

Officers served the warrants at two residences in the city on Saturday. The warrants stemmed from an investigation that began Feb. 26 when a home was burglarized on Ashland Court.

Both boys, ages 13 and 15, were booked into Placer County Juvenile Hall on suspicion of burglary and conspiracy. Officers recovered electronic items during the searches.

The investigation continues for more suspects and stolen property.

February 28, 2012
Public invited to tour Sacramento juvenile hall next month

The public is invited to tour two unoccupied housing units and the visitor center at Sacramento County's Juvenile Hall.

The invitation is extended for one day only: March 10 from noon to 2 p.m. at the youth detention facility, 4136 Branch Center Road.

The event is open to all ages. County probation personnel will give the tours and demonstrate an automated license plate recognition system that helps officers recover stolen cars.

Juvenile Hall, opened in 1961, was recently renovated and 210 beds were added.

The public is asked to leave personal belongings, including cameras, locked in their vehicles. The public will not visit or see hall youth.

February 21, 2012
Close call for teen shot in Sacramento

A 16-year-old was grazed in the head by gunfire as a result of another teen playing with a handgun, police said.

Sacramento police said the two 16-year-olds were in the backyard of a residence in the 100 block of Fairbanks Avenue in Strawberry Manor on Sunday morning when the recently acquired weapon fired.

One of the teens was "playing with the handgun" when it fired, according to a police activity log.

The injured boy was treated and released from the hospital. The 16-year-old who was handling the weapon was booked into Sacramento County Juvenile Hall for suspicion of negligent discharge of a firearm.

February 1, 2012
Sacramento police arrest 2 in shooting at Bee newspaper carriers

Sacramento police have arrested two people suspected of shooting at Bee carriers delivering newspapers in Meadowview earlier this year.

Police say they believe the suspects mistook the victims as rival gangsters because one of them was wearing a bandana across his face to shield him from the cold as he hung out the slow-moving car, tossing newspapers, said Sgt. Andrew Pettit.

Xou Thao 21.jpgLast week, police arrested the driver of the suspect vehicle, 21-year-old Xou Thao, pictured at left, Pettit said. On Tuesday night, they arrested Thao's passenger, a 17-year-old boy they suspect fired the gun, Pettit said. His name was not released because he is a juvenile.

Both suspects face two felony charges of assault with a deadly weapon, as well as a gang enhancement, Pettit said.

January 26, 2012
Teen seriously injured by rifle gunfire in south Sacramento County

A 16-year-old boy suffered serious injuries when he was shot in the Florin area Tuesday evening.

His injuries initially were life-threatening, but he is now expected to survive, said Sacramento County sheriff's Deputy Jason Ramos.

The shooting occurred shortly after 5:30 p.m. Tuesday on the 8600 block of Crystal River Way, according to a Sheriff's Department report.

January 5, 2012
DA: Sacramento priest admitted molesting girl

By Cynthia Hubert
chubert@sacbee.com

A deputy district attorney told a Sacramento Superior Court judge Thursday that the Rev. Uriel Ojeda, a Catholic priest jailed on sex abuse charges, has admitted to repeatedly molesting a teenaged parishioner.

Arguing that Ojeda's bail should remain high, Deputy DA Allison Dunham said that, based on the charges, the priest is a threat to the community and a flight risk. She said Ojeda, 32, who served at parishes in Woodland and Redding before his arrest last month, admitted to an investigator for the Sacramento Catholic Diocese that he repeatedly abused a teenaged girl, kissing her on the lips, rubbing her breasts and other inappropriate touching.

Ojeda's lawyer, Jesse Ortiz, disputed the prosecutor's account, and told Judge Marjorie Koller that the diocese is punishing Ojeda because they dislike him.

December 19, 2011
Woodland man found guilty of molesting child

A Woodland man has been convicted of molesting the 6-year-old daughter of a couple with whom he was sharing a home.

After a four-day trial, a Yolo County jury deliberated a half-day before finding Efrain Amed Vasquez Martinez, 29, guilty Friday of four of six charges of child molestation that occurred in two separate incidents.

About 4 a.m. on April 24, one of Vasquez's housemates awoke to sounds in the home that raised suspicion, and she sent her husband to investigate. The husband opened the door to the children's bedroom, where he found a 4-year-old boy asleep and the 6-year-old girl pulling the covers over her, as Vasquez, wearing only his underwear, attempted to hide in the closet, according to a Yolo County District Attorney's Office news release.

December 9, 2011
Home burglarized, Chihuahua stabbed to death; Sacramento teen arrested

Sacramento police arrested a 15-year-old boy Thursday after he allegedly burglarized a home and stabbed the family's Chihuahua to death, according to authorities.

The family returned to their home on Majorca Circle about 3 p.m. and saw a young boy they recognized bolt from the garage, said police Sgt. Andrew Pettit.

As some family members chased the boy, others went inside to find the home ransacked. They also found the family's pet Chihuahua, who had been kept in a pen in the garage, stabbed to death, Pettit said.

November 8, 2011
High-speed Capital City Freeway chase ends in arrests

Chase suspects.jpgThat car doing 100 mph on the Capital City freeway Monday afternoon was full of suspected burglars and their loot, according to sheriff's deputies.

Two young men and two 16 year olds inside the car were eventually taken into custody after the driver lost control with a deputy in hot pursuit. In the car, deputies found two televisions, a guitar and other items taken in residential burglaries.

The incident began about 1:30 p.m. Monday when the sheriff's department got a call about a home burglary in the 3800 block of Dell Road. The burglars were said to have left the scene in a blue Toyota sedan, a car similar to one used by burglars in another break-in earlier Monday.

October 27, 2011
Maggie the cattle dog case settled in Sierra County

Maggie the cattle dog.jpgThe man accused of running over Maggie the cattle dog has been sentenced.

Justin Phillip Lombardo-Barton, 19, of Camptonville, was sentenced to five years probation and time served. A Sierra County Superior Court judge gave Lombardo-Barton credit for 122 days in county jail.

Lombardo-Barton, who pled no contest to felony animal cruelty and hit and run, also will undergo counseling and faces a fine restitution hearing.

October 4, 2011
Sacramento police 'hot spot' study shows focus the key

A Sacramento police "hot spot" study has revealed that highly visible focusing on an area by officers reduces crime.

The 90-day study was conducted in East Sacramento and downtown beginning Feb. 8. Police identified 42 hot spots where high amounts of calls for service -- often involving violent crime -- were reported.

September 30, 2011
Man arrested on suspicion of child luring released without charges

A man arrested Friday morning in Roseville on suspicion of attempting to lure a child into his vehicle Thursday evening has been released without being charged.

After Roseville police interviewed the man and verified his whereabouts at the time of the incident, they determined that he was not involved.

Roseville police received a report at 5:04 p.m. Thursday that a man in a white van had tried to get a child to enter his vehicle at Catherine Gates Elementary School on Trehowell Drive. Unable to find the suspect upon arrival, police sent out a description, and people in the area identified the man. After police established probable cause, the man who was later released was taken into custody without incident.

Roseville police said in a news release that they have received several reports of strangers talking to children or offering them rides in the vicinity of schools the past few weeks. The descriptions of the strangers and their vehicles has varied widely. The department asks that parents remain vigilant over their children as they continue to investigate the reports.

September 21, 2011
Unloaded gun confiscated from student at Greenhaven school

A student brought an unloaded gun onto a Greenhaven neighborhood school campus on Tuesday, police said.

The 9-year-old brought the gun to Sol Aureus College Preparatory School on Gloria Drive in a backpack and had shown the weapon to a classmate, police said. Staff was alerted to the presence of the gun and confiscated the weapon.

An investigation into how the student got the gun revealed that it was obtained from the home of a relative of the student. It was determined that neither the parents nor the relative were negligent, police said in an activity log.

September 19, 2011
Fight on Valley High campus leaves six students arrested

Six students face arrest and a school staff member suffered a minor injury after a fight occurred this morning just before class started at Valley High School.

The fight broke out about 7:55 a.m. in the front parking lot at the school, 6300 Ehrhardt Ave., said Elizabeth Graswich, spokeswoman for the Elk Grove Unified School District. The fight involved four 16 year old and two 15 year old boys.

The fighting stemmed from an on-going dispute in the community that until this morning had not cropped up on campus. Officials did not release the cause of the dispute.

September 14, 2011
Roseville woman attacked from behind during early morning walk

A Roseville woman was knocked to the ground, hit with a soda bottle and her necklace stolen by two males who attacked her from behind.

The young woman, who was having trouble sleeping, went for a walk in the 1800 block of Eureka Road about 1 a.m. Tuesday. She was knocked down and her silver necklace ripped away.

The victim was able to run from her attackers and call police. She was treated for scratches and abrasions at the hospital.

September 9, 2011
Accused principal arraigned, but doesn't enter plea

RCB_20110909_ADAMS 0167A.jpgAccused child molester Robert B. Adams, left, appears in court Friday morning with his attorney, Linda Parisi. He did not enter a plea. Photo by Renee C. Byer

By Sam Stanton
sstanton@sacbee.com

With his family in tears sitting behind him, accused child molester Robert B. Adams made his first court appearance this morning but did not enter a plea and his case was set to Oct. 7.

After the brief appearance, his attorney, Linda Parisi, said she was shocked and saddened that charges had been filed against the former principal of Creative Frontiers School in Citrus Heights.

September 8, 2011
Police: American Legion student arrested for having loaded gun on campus

Sacramento police arrested a 17-year-old boy this afternoon after he brought a loaded handgun on to the American Legion High School campus, according to authorities.

The handgun was spotted in the boy's waistband and later confiscated, said police Sgt. Andrew Pettit. Nobody was injured.

The incident began when a school administrator tried to break up a group of teens loitering on campus, Pettit said. When one student "mouthed off" to the administrator, the administrator ordered him to the office, the sergeant said.

The student instead started walking away, and that's when the administrator saw the gun's handle in the student's waistband. The administrator brought the student back to the office, where a School Resource Officer met them, confiscated the gun and arrested the student, Pettit said.

September 8, 2011
Former principal facing molestation charges still hospitalized

By Sam Stanton
sstanton@sacbee.com

Robert B. Adams remains hospitalized today, one day after his arrest on charges he molested students while serving as principal at his private Citrus Heights school.

Adams, 60, complained of chest pains when police arrived at his Folsom home to arrest him on six felony counts and one misdemeanor and was taken to a hospital.

August 27, 2011
Bait car stolen, Sacramento police nab 10-year-old girl

After a monitored bait car was stolen around 11:30 a.m. Friday, a Sacramento police officer saw someone driving the vehicle near Tamoshanter Way and Matson Drive.

The officer observed the driver, a 10-year-old girl, try to run away.

"It was a bad judgment call on her end," said Sgt. Andrew Pettit, spokesman for the Sacramento Police Department.

The girl, who was not identified, was returned to her parents.

August 17, 2011
Man who allegedly shot at Sacramento police has long history, records show

Sacramento police said Wednesday that the man who allegedly fired at an officer after the officer tried to stop him, thinking he fit the description of a recent armed robbery suspect, was not in fact the man wanted for the robbery.

But police also said the man, 20-year-old Devonte Fields, was a validated gangster and felony probationer armed with a handgun - suggesting why he likely fled from police.

Officers arrested Fields Tuesday night at the conclusion of a three-hour standoff at a Valley Hi Drive apartment complex, which law enforcement officers from across the county had surrounded.

A patrol officer had attempted to contact Fields in the area of Valley Hi Drive and Bamford Drive, thinking the man matched the description of a suspect wanted in a recent armed robbery, according to police. Fields fled, and as the officer gave chase on foot, Fields allegedly fired at the officer, police said. The officer was not hit, and Fields disappeared into the apartment complex.

August 8, 2011
9 calls involving guns kept Sacramento police busy over weekend

Sacramento police responded to nine calls involving guns over the weekend, and recovered a gun during a tenth, according to police reports.

One person was injured by gunfire, and multiple people were arrested, the reports state.

Here's a recap of the incidents, beginning Friday morning and ending Sunday night, as relayed in police reports:

August 3, 2011
CHP: Sign up to get Amber Alerts on your cell phone

By Kim Minugh
kminugh@sacbee.com

The California Highway Patrol is urging residents to sign up for a service that sends Amber Alerts to cell phones via text message - one more way residents can help authorities find missing children fast.

The service, which is free regardless of your wireless plan, sends alerts tailored to your area based on the zip code that you provide. You can provide up to five zip codes, and authorities recommend you at least add the zip codes in which you live and work.

To sign up, visit www.wirelessamberalerts.org. Alerts can also be sent in Spanish.

July 31, 2011
Teen suspects sought in Sacramento area robbery spree

Sacramento police are on the lookout for three juveniles suspected of carrying out a series of armed robberies between 2 and 4:30 a.m. today.

In one of the robberies a victim was shot in the eye. In another, two female victims were forced to disrobe and then were touched sexually, police said today.

The robbery spree centered in the Oak Park area and extended into a neighborhood a short distance to the south.

July 27, 2011
Marysville police target adults who furnish alcohol to minors

Two people were arrested and cited Monday night in Marysville in sting operations aimed at people who furnish alcohol to minors.

From 7 to 11 p.m., Marysville police officers working with Alcoholic Beverage Control investigators conducted undercover operations in the city, targeting people who agree to purchase or furnish alcohol to minors and stores that sell alcohol to minors.

The operation consisted of "shoulder tap" and "minor decoy" stings, according to a Police Department news release. Shoulder tap stings target people who purchase alcohol for underage drinkers, and minor decoy stings target store or restaurant employees who sell alcohol to minors.

March 17, 2011
Hundreds of Sacramento teens expected for anti-violence rally

By Melody Gutierrez
mgutierrez@sacbee.com

Hundreds of teens from area high schools are set to stage a peace rally Friday at Cesar Chavez Park on 10th and J streets.

Various campuses throughout Sacramento have hosted peace-related events all week to raise awareness about gang violence and in teen crime victims.

The event is hosted by the Sacramento Youth Commission and will begin at noon on Friday.

Students from Hiram Johnson, McClatchy, Grant, Luther Burbank and St. Francis will be participating with County Supervisor Phil Serna.

Call The Bee's Melody Gutierrez, (916) 326-5521. Follow her on Twitter @MelodyGutierrez.

January 17, 2011
Three Woodland juveniles arrested on suspicion of attempted burglary

By Brad Branan
bbranan@sacbee.com

Woodland police have arrested three juveniles on suspicion of attempted residential burglary this morning.

Police saw the juveniles near the home when they were responding to an attempted burglary call from the residence, according to news release from Woodland police. The suspects, who removed window screens and tried to open doors to the home, were identified by a witness, police said.

The suspects, who weren't identified in the news release because of their ages, were brought to Yolo County Juvenile Hall and booked on charges of attempted burglary and conspiracy to commit burglary. The three juveniles are Woodland residents.

Call The Bee's Brad Branan, (916) 321-1065.

September 23, 2010
Roseville teens suspected in murder-for-hire plot arrested

By Cathy Locke
clocke@sacbee.com

Two Roseville teenagers have been arrested after allegedly offering a fellow student money to kill a probation officer.

The two, a 16-year-old girl and 14-year-old boy, are students at the Youth Resource Center school, a community school on Sundown Way operated by the Placer County Probation Department.

Roseville police were notified Tuesday morning of the students' alleged attempt to hire another student to kill one of the probation officers at the school. The two were upset with the probation officer because he had told them not to associate with each other, according to Police Department spokeswoman Dee Dee Gunther.

Police said no assault occurred and no weapons were found on campus.

The two teenagers were arrested on suspicion of conspiracy and soliciting another to commit murder, and taken to Placer County Juvenile Hall. Their names were not released because they are juveniles.

Officers also conducted a probation search of a Roseville house in connection with the incident and recovered a stolen, loaded handgun. A adult at the residence, 37-year-old Shavel Leveron Pope of Roseville, was arrested on suspicion of being a felon in possession of a firearm and possession of stolen property. He was booked at Roseville City Jail and released after posting a $45,000 bail bond.

Gunther said Pope is not accused of involvement in the plot with the two juveniles, and is suspected of only the illegal weapon and stolen property offenses.

Call The Bee's Cathy Locke, (916) 321-5287.

May 12, 2010
Sacramento County supes vote for underage-drinking crackdown

By Robert Lewis
rlewis@sacbee.com

Sacramento County is cracking down on underage drinking and will begin punishing adults who host or provide a setting for minors to drink.

The Board of Supervisors on Wednesday voted unanimously for an ordinance that will allow the county to fine adults who let minors drink in their home. State law only prohibits underage drinking in public. The new ordinance is aimed at those adults who let minors have parties with alcohol.

"Young people report they get alcohol primarily from family and friends, and indicate they can often get alcohol at private parties," according to a report county officials prepared for Wednesday's hearing. "The ordinance helps a community promote a clear and consistent message that alcohol use under the age of 21 is illegal, dangerous, and unacceptable. Under the ordinance parents and adults can be held accountable for their role in knowingly permitting or hosting unsupervised parties where alcohol is served to, or consumed by minors."

Violating the Social Host Ordinance will lead to fines between $100 and $500. Landlords, property management companies and other owner agents are excluded.

Several advocacy groups including Mothers Against Drunk Driving and the Sacramento Youth and Alcohol Coalition supported the ordinance.

"It creates a valuable tool to making sure adults consider carefully their actions before making alcohol available or knowing alcohol will be available in their residence to those who are underage," Supervisor Roger Dickinson said.

Call The Bee's Robert Lewis, (916) 321-1061.

May 10, 2010
Elk Grove teen suspected of setting five fires

By Bill Lindelof
blindelof@sacbee.com

A teenager has been arrested in Elk Grove on suspicion of setting five fires in two days last week.

The 13-year-old boy is suspected of starting two fires at the Spaghetti Factory restaurant on Laguna Boulevard on May 4. The following day, he is suspected of setting a grass fire on the west side of Camden Lake and fires at Joseph Kerr Middle School on Elk Grove Boulevard and Kohl's department store on Calvine Road.

No injuries were reported. Damage to structures was not extensive, fire officials said.

Cosumnes Community Services District Fire Department investigators took the Elk Grove teen into custody Thursday. He was taken to Sacramento County Juvenile Hall.

Call The Bee's Bill Lindelof, (916) 321-1079.

January 4, 2010
Surrender might be first step in Folsom juvenile's turnaround

From Bill Lindelof:

Folsom police say a juvenile who wanted to make a new start in 2010 gave himself up in a dramatic way on Sunday.

Police say the young man, a suspect in a car theft who they believe evaded arrest a few days earlier, gave himself up in the middle of a park soccer field.

The suspect "dramatically waited for officers to arrive by standing dead center of a soccer field in the park," a Folsom police news release stated.

The incident started Wednesday when officers tried to pull over a stolen red Honda near Willowmere Drive and Montrose Drive. However, the car drove away and then pulled into a school parking lot.

Both the driver and passenger fled on foot in Ed Mitchell Park, leading to an unsuccessful search of the area.

On Sunday, officers were dispatched back to Ed Mitchell Park.

"It appeared that guilt had set in, and the juvenile perpetrator decided the right way to start the New Year would be to admit last year's misgivings," the press release stated. "He was forthright with officers regarding his crime and associated vehicle burglaries he used the stolen vehicle to commit."

The young man was arrested on suspicion of auto theft and multiple counts of vehicle burglary.

December 17, 2009
15-year-old accused of assaulting principal turns himself in

From Kim Minugh:

The 15-year-old boy accused of assaulting the River City High School principal in October has turned himself in to West Sacramento police, according to authorities.

Earlier this month, authorities issued an arrest warrant for the 15-year-old, who is not being identified because he is a juvenile. The boy found out about the warrant, turned himself in Wednesday night and was booked into the Yolo County Juvenile Hall on a felony charge of battery with serious bodily injury, said West Sacramento police Lt. Tod Sockman.

Police say the boy was one of a number of students involved in fights Oct. 28 on the River City High campus. As Principal Stuart McKay tried to intervene, the boy punched McKay in the back of the head, and the principal fell to the ground, according to police.

McKay sustained serious head, neck and neurological injuries as a result of the assault, police said.

Multiple students were suspended because of the fights; the 15-year-old boy was expelled and has since moved, according to authorities.

July 27, 2009
Prosecutors seek to try teen as adult in mother's death

From Bill Lindelof:

Prosecutors filed a motion today to try 14-year-old Tylar Marie Witt as an adult in the homicide of her mother in El Dorado County.

"We have filed a fitness petition for her to be deemed not fit for juvenile court," said El Dorado Chief Assistant District Attorney Bill Clark.

The motion on whether she will be tried as an adult or a juvenile is scheduled to be heard Aug. 24. The juvenile court appearance in Placerville by Witt today took only about 15 minutes.

Witt and her 19-year-old boyfriend, Steven Paul Colver, are suspects in the killing of Joanne M. Witt.

June 26, 2009
Update: 48 youthful offenders furloughed as center closes

From Bill Lindelof:

A judge granted early furloughs Friday to 48 of the 63 wards of the Warren E. Thornton Youth Center as the juvenile lock-up closes after four decades, the victim of county budget cuts.

Another 15 youths were ordered house at Juvenile Hall, pending further hearings to determine their next commitment, said Probation Department spokeswoman Erin Treadwell. She said those hearings will be next week.

The wards granted furloughs must adhere to the conditions of furlough and will be supervised by Juvenile Field Probation Officers, Treadwell said. They will also continue to receive treatment services in the community, she said.

But the center will be missed, Treadwell said. "It has been very valuable."

During protracted budget wrangling, the county probation department was able to keep open the Boys Ranch but couldn't salvage the Thornton Center, which houses younger, less sophisticated offenders.

The average age of wards at Thornton was 13 to 16 years old for boys and up to 18 for girls.

On Friday, a courtroom was set up at the center so that the 65 young people wouldn't have to be transferred to juvenile court.

Cases came before the court where a public defender, deputy district attorney, probation officials, the judge and parents were present.

Best options were be explored for each ward, Treadwell said.

The building will be closed Tuesday, but the county needed a few days to prepare the facility for final closure so the youth were being transferred on Friday.

The facility is not far from Juvenile Hall on Branch Center Road near Bradshaw Road and Highway 50. Offenders at the center were typically incarcerated for robbery, drug offenses, auto theft and assault.

Treadwell said closing Thornton posed less of a public-safety risk from the facility's wards than would arise from closing Boys Ranch.

Working with the wards at a young age at the center gave probation a good chance to put them on the right path, Treadwell said.

While at Thornton Center, young offenders got treatment for mental health, anger management and drug addiction.

The youths also attended school. And if they progressed well through the program, they could go home on weekends.

The Thornton Center operated with locked doors but Boys Ranch and Juvenile Hall have higher security precautions.

The county must keep Juvenile Hall open since it is where youthful offenders who've committed the most serious criminal acts are incarcerated.

Closing the 110-bed Thornton facility, which has been in service 41 years, will save $8.9 million.

May 18, 2009
Teen arrested after chase, allegedly carried guns in his car

From Kim Minugh:

Sacramento police arrested a 16-year-old boy this weekend for allegedly having two loaded handguns in his car - a discovery made after the boy had blown several stop signs and crashed into several cars, according to a police report.

Just before midnight Friday, an officer saw a car speed through several stop signs in the area of 21st Avenue and 73rd Street, according to the report. The officer estimated the car was going 80 miles per hour, and turned on his lights and sirens to pursue the car.

The officer temporarily lost sight of the vehicle - until it had crashed into five cars in the area of Toronto Way and 79th Street, in the Colonial Village neighborhood, the report states. The officer located a 16-year-old boy walking away from the car, and found two loaded handguns inside the vehicle, according to the report.

The boy was booked into juvenile hall on two weapons-related charges and one charge related to his driver's license, the report states.

May 1, 2009
Gunshots, fleeing juveniles precede 3 Galt arrests

From Niesha Lofing:

Suspected gang activity disrupted a Galt neighborhood Thursday evening, leading to the arrest of three boys.

Officers were called about 6:42 p.m. to the 200 block of 2nd Street on a report of possible shots fired, a police news release states.

Witnesses provided suspect descriptions, and Galt police searched the area and found three juveniles about a half-mile away on Spruce Avenue. The boys fled when officers approach but were caught and taken into custody.

Two of the boys had no-bail juvenile warrants, and the third allegedly possessed a loaded firearm, the release states. All three were booked into the Sacramento County Juvenile Detention Center.

Police say they believe the incident is gang-related. An investigation continues.

Anyone with information about the case is asked to call Galt police at (209) 366-7000.

March 18, 2009
Elk Grove Police arrests teen on suspicion of robbery

From Sandy Louey:

Elk Grove police arrested a 13-year-old boy Tuesday in connection with a robbery.

The incident took place Thursday when a 13-year-old boy was walking home from school in the 9900 block of Sorentino Drive. Another boy walked up behind him and pulled his backpack, forcing him to fall to the ground, according to a report from the Elk Grove Police Department.

The boy grabbed the victim's MP3 player and left. Investigative efforts identified the boy as being the one responsible. He was arrested on suspicion of robbery and was taken to juvenile hall, police said.

March 17, 2009
Elk Grove police make two arrests after short pursuit

From Sandy Louey:

Elk Grove police arrested two 15-year-old Sacramento boys Monday after a short pursuit.

The incident occurred at 3:45 p.m. in the 8200 block of Crichton Way when an officer saw the boys in a reported stolen vehicle, according to a report from the Elk Grove Police Department.

When the officer tried to conduct an enforcement stop, the pursuit ensued. Both boys abandoned the vehicle and left on foot, police said.

After a brief search, both boys were found and taken to juvenile hall. Both were arrested on suspicion of resisting arrest and receiving stolen property. The driver was also arrested on suspicion of driving a stolen vehicle, evading an officer and driving without a license, police said.

February 2, 2009
Two teens arrested for suspected vehicle theft in Elk Grove

From Sandy Louey:

Elk Grove police arrested two 16-year-old boys, one of whom was spotted driving recklessly on Interstate 5 Friday night.

A witness saw a vehicle southbound on Interstate 5 near Laguna Boulevard near midnight. The person followed the vehicle and called police, according to a police report.

A computer check revealed it was a reported stolen vehicle. Officers located it in the parking lot of Strikes Family Entertainment Center, at 3443 Laguna Blvd., police said.

The boys, who were in the vehicle, were arrested on suspicion of vehicle theft and receiving stolen property. They were taken to juvenile hall.

January 13, 2009
Yolo juvenile detention center sets open house

From Sandy Louey:

The Yolo County Juvenile Detention Center will hold an open house in February.

The open house is scheduled from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Feb. 9 at the facility, 2880 East Gibson Road in Woodland.

Staff from the facility and the Yolo County Office of Education and volunteer groups will provide information about what they do to rehabilitate youth.

There will also be guided tours. Check in for the tours will start at 5 p.m.

November 19, 2008
Teen arrested after reportedly robbing 12-year-old in Elk Grove

From Sandy Louey:

Elk Grove police have arrested a 16-year-old boy who allegedly pulled a boy off his bicycle and stole his cell phone.

The incident occurred at 4:38 p.m. Tuesday at Sheldon Creek Drive and Silvery Blue Way. A 12-year-old boy was riding his bicycle on a trail when the teen ran up to him and pulled him off the bicycle, according to report from the Elk Grove Police Department.

Police said the teen, who wore a beanie cap and a bandana covering the lower part of his face, held the boy down and searched his pockets. He verbally threatened to harm him before stealing his phone.

After the victim told his parents what happened, they drove around looking for the teen. Police were called and the teen, who was hiding in a nearby home, was taken into custody after the boy identified him as the robber, police said.

The 16-year-old was arrested on suspicion of robbery and taken to juvenile hall.

November 13, 2008
Four teens convicted in West Sacramento beating of Amtrak engineer

From Hudson Sangree:

Yolo County jurors returned guilty verdicts Thursday against four young men accused of attacking an Amtrak engineer last year in West Sacramento.

Three of the defendants - Pauliton Nunes, 20, Austen Nunes, 18, and Orlando Javier Ramos, 16 - were convicted of attempted voluntary manslaughter.

A fourth defendant - Daniel Bonge, 18 - was convicted of assault with a deadly weapon.

Jurors found all four were members of the Broderick Boys street gang.

A fifth defendant, Robert Reynolds, 17, was acquitted on all charges.

Jurors rejected attempted murder charges against all of the defendants.

The five were accused of severely beating engineer Jacob Keating, including hitting him on the head with a vodka bottle and a fire extinguisher.

Keating testified he stopped the Capitol Corridor train on the night of April 16, 2007, after the group of teens threw rocks at the train as it slowed near the I Street Bridge.

The engineer admitted he threw the first punch, but said the group attack that followed left him begging for his life.


October 15, 2008
Recent Sheldon High arrests called isolated incidents

From David Richie:

A reported sexual assault in a Sheldon High School restroom and two other recent on-campus episodes were "isolated incidents" and safety at the school is still strong, law enforcement and school district officials said this week.

The most serious incident occurred about 11 a.m. Oct. 2 when a 15-year-old boy reportedly forced a 15-year-old girl into a restroom stall and sexually assaulted her. An incident summary released recently by the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department indicates that the girl tried to fight back and told the boy several times to stop what he was doing.

Eventually the boy departed and school officials found the girl during a routine bathroom check, said Elizabeth Graswich, spokeswoman for the Elk Grove Unified School District. Sheriff's investigators were called in and the boy was arrested later that day. A letter was sent home with all students informing parents about the incident, Graswich said.

The boy acted alone and did not present a danger to the rest of the student body, Sgt. Tim Curran, spokesman for the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department, said Tuesday.

"The girl was targeted. They were former girlfriend and boyfriend, so it was not a random incident," Curran said.

Curran and Graswich did not know if the boy was still in juvenile hall or if he had been released to his parents.

Graswich described an incident about 9:35 a.m. Oct. 1 as a fight between two groups of boys.

The sheriff's description of the incident indicates that three 17-year-olds and one 16-year-old attacked two other boys of similar age and at least one of the four was armed. All four were arrested and booked on multiple charges including suspicion of battery, conspiracy and participation in a criminal street gang. All the individuals involved were Vietnamese.

The weapon was a belt buckle. The two boys suffered cuts and refused medical attention, Graswich said.

The third incident, about 10:20 a.m. Sept. 30 involved a 15-year-old boy who reportedly brought a folding knife to school. Another student spotted the weapon and informed school officials. A vice principal started looking for the boy with the knife and during the course of that investigation, he was threatened by another boy, age 16. Both boys were eventually taken into custody.

No letters were sent home informing parents about the Oct. 1 and Sept. 30 occurrences.

"Realize that all three of these were isolated incidents," Graswich said.

The school district contracts with the Sheriff's Department for a deputy who serves as a school resource officer at Sheldon High School. That relationship also gives the district access to other sheriff's services when they are needed.

The district also employs school monitors at Sheldon High, and the principal walks around the school regularly. Officials do not see any need to further tighten campus control measures.

"Security is already fairly high," Graswich said.

October 6, 2008
Youth with gun arrested at Sacramento light-rail station

From Stan Oklobdzija:

Police officers arrested an alleged gang member with a gun at the Fruitridge light-rail station Friday night after he threatened others on the train with it, police said.

Officers received a call from a passenger on the southbound Blue-Line train about 8:40 p.m. saying two groups of youths were arguing at the Broadway station, said Sgt. Jim Hose. One brandished a handgun, Hose said.

Police and county sheriff's officers waited for the group at the Fruitridge light-rail station and started searching passengers as they left the train, Hose said.

Hose said the youth with the gun was arrested.

Hose said witnesses reported the group was claiming to belong to the Fourth-Avenue Blood t gang, based in Oak Park, as they entered the train.

September 24, 2008
Three Woodland teens arrested in attack on 13-year-old

From Niesha Lofing:

Three teenagers were arrested Tuesday night after allegedly beating and stabbing a 13-year-old in a Woodland neighborhood.

Woodland police received a call of shots fired at 7:30 p.m. in the area of Lemen Avenue and Donnelly Circle, a police news release said. They found the victim had been beaten and stabbed in the upper torso.

Witnesses reported seeing a dark-colored sport utility vehicle leaving the scene.

The victim was taken to UC Davis Medical Center for treatment.

About two hours later, police returned to the neighborhood on a report of a dark-colored SUV and red Chrysler 300 driving recklessly.

An officer stopped the SUV, and a witness identified the occupants of the vehicle - two 15-year-olds and Milton Escobedo, 18 - and said they were at the scene of the stabbing, police said.

The witness told police Escobedo beat the victim with a baseball bat and that one of the 15-year-olds stabbed the victim.

The three teens were arrested on suspicion of conspiracy. One 15-year-old also was arrested on suspicion of attempted murder. Escobedo was arrested on suspicion of assault.

Police also received a call from Woodland Memorial Hospital that a 15-year-old with a stab wound to the neck had arrived there, but it is unknown whether the two stabbings are related.

Anyone with information about the case is asked to call police at (530) 661-7800.

September 18, 2008
Two injured, one arrested in gang-related Galt fight

From Niesha Lofing:

Galt police seek information about a gang-related fight that injured two people and led to a teenage boy's arrest.

Police received several 911 calls at about 5:36 p.m. Wednesday reporting that about 10 people were fighting in the 200 block of McFarland Street, a police news release states.

Police found two injured people at the location, one who had been stabbed in the shoulder and had to be taken to UC Davis Medical Center in Sacramento.

Another person's arm had been cut by a thrown object, but he refused medical treatment, the release states.

Police, who determined that the fight was gang-related, arrested a teenage boy on an outstanding no-bail warrant after talking to him during the investigation, the release states.

The investigation continues, and anyone with information about the fight is asked to call police at (209) 366-7000.

September 11, 2008
Teen arrested after reportedly breaking car window, threatening driver

From Sandy Louey:

Elk Grove police arrested a 17-year-old boy Wednesday for allegedly breaking a man's car window and threatening him.

At 1 p.m., a man was stopped at Laguna Boulevard and Harbour Point Drive when the boy got out of a nearby vehicle, according to a police report.

The boy broke out the man's driver-side window with his fist, threatened him and tried to grab him. The man left in the vehicle and called police, the report said.

Police Spokesman Christopher Trim said the incident wasn't a random act and that the boy believed the man was responsible for an altercation last week involving someone he knew.

The boy, who was found at his home, was arrested on suspicion of threatening to commit a crime. He was taken to juvenile hall, police said.

July 15, 2008
Two teens arrested in alleged shoplifting spree at the Galleria

From Art Campos:

Two 13-year-old girls were arrested during the weekend for allegedly shoplifting clothing and accessory items from at least eight stores at the Galleria at Roseville, police reported.

The reported crime spree ended at 4:25 p.m. Saturday when security officers at one of the stores apprehended and held them for police, who booked them on suspicion of burglary and conspiracy at the Placer County Juvenile Detection Center in Auburn, said Roseville Police Department spokeswoman Dee Dee Gunther.

One of the girls is from Roseville and the other is from Citrus Heights, she said.

"Often, teenagers think that shoplifting is easy, that they are not likely to get caught and that there are no serious consequences," Gunther said. "In fact, shoplifting is a serious crime. Stores certainly take it seriously and have sophisticated security systems in place to detect and apprehend shoplifters."

Gunther said Roseville police arrested 689 shoplifters in 2007 and that many were prosecuted on charges of petty theft, burglary or robbery.

She noted that if someone enters a business with the intent to steal, a misdemeanor petty theft could be upgraded to burglary, which is a felony. If shoplifters resist or fight with store personnel or anyone trying to detain them, the crime is upgraded to robbery, a serious violent felony, she said.

June 13, 2008
High school student accused of e-mailing threats to teachers

A Fountain Valley, Calif., teenage boy accused of making violent threats against two teachers at his high school told investigators the e-mails were meant as a joke, police said.

Police have asked the Orange County district attorney to file criminal charges against the 16-year-old boy who was arrested at Fountain Valley High School on May 23 on suspicion of making criminal threats, said Lt. Paul McInnis. He was later released to his parents.

"I think that people think they can hide behind the veil of anonymity when they are online," said Chris Herzfeld, Fountain Valley High School principal. "Any threats like that, we get the police department involved."

Here's the Associated Press story.

June 5, 2008
Loomis teens turn up tipsy for girls P.E.

A physical education teacher at Del Oro High School in Loomis recently noticed that some girls in her class were acting strangely.

She suspected they might be slightly intoxicated, according to a report taken May 22 by the Placer County Sheriff's Department.

The teacher called the vice principal, who checked through one of the students' backpacks and discovered a water bottle containing a mix of vodka and cranberry juice, the report said.

The 15-year-old student was cited by a sheriff's officer for being a minor in possession of an alcoholic beverage and was released into the custody of her parents.

-- Art Campos

April 21, 2008
Teen cyberspace threat alleged

A 13-year-old student at Sylvan Middle School was booked into juvenile hall Thursday after she posted threats against another student on MySpace.com, officials said.

Earlier, the girl had threatened the other student with a piece of glass she picked up in the schoolyard, Citrus Heights police officials said. But taking the dispute into cyberspace is what really got her in trouble.

The girl was charged with a felony count of making terrorist threats. An arrest summary also indicates a misdemeanor charge of brandishing a weapon.

The incident is another local example of Internet-related crime that law enforcement officials are dealing with nationwide.

On Friday, Ann Marie Linscott pleaded guilty Friday to federal charges stemming from a Craigslist ad soliciting the murder of an Oroville woman who is the wife of Linscott's former lover. Here's Denny Walsh's story about that case.

More on Thursday's incident from David Richie:

March 27, 2008
Four arrested in connection with Pocket burglaries

From Ryan Lillis:

Four juveniles -- apparently too cool for school -- were nabbed after allegedly committing a pair of home burglaries in Sacramento's Pocket area midday Monday, police said.

Even more troubling was the fact that police believe the crew took handguns in both break-ins and may be responsible for several more burglaries in the area.

More story:

March 27, 2008
Update: Three teens arrested in Woodland park incident

Three teenagers have been arrested for suspicion of spitting on a 2-year-old boy and the child's mother in a Woodland park. The mother was also allegedly kicked and bitten.

Here's the rest of Bill Lindelof's update:

March 26, 2008
Mother attacked at Woodland park

Three teenagers attacked a 22-year-old woman in a Woodland park Monday evening, after she suspected them of spitting at her 2-year-old boy, police said.

Sgt. Dan Letamendi said the mother and toddler were at the play structure at Ferns Park at about 7 p.m. when they met their attackers, two boys and a girl, who were between 17 to 19 years old.

More details from Chelsea Phua:

March 25, 2008
14-year-old accused of assaulting officers

From David Richie and Stan Oklobdzija:

Two teenagers ran afoul of Citrus Heights police Wednesday evening after spiking their spring break with vodka and cough syrup, officers say.

The concoction sounds like one of the many variations referred to on the Internet as "purple drank" or "sizzurp." It is also called "lean," possibly because that's what people do when they drink it - just before they fall down. It might also be called "lethal." It is suspected as a contributing factor in the deaths of several hip hop artists.

Police say that when they arrived at the home near San Juan Park, one of the boys, age 14, flew into a rage. The boy tried to kick one officer and spit at two other officers.

An arrest summary released Monday alleges that the boy continued to spit at police officers and hospital staff members after being transported by paramedics to Mercy San Juan Medical Center in Carmichael.

He was subsequently transported to juvenile hall and booked on suspicion of battery on a police officer and disorderly conduct.

The other boy was cooperative during the whole encounter. He was released to his parents after being treated at the hospital.



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