Thursday, September 26, 2013

DA Gang Units across the county continue to battle. Check out these latest headlines:

Fontana Gang Unit files Robbery and Assault with a Deadly Weapon charges against Angelo Thornton:

Drug-related charges filed against documented gang member Ramon Acosta:

Los Angeles gang member charged with second degree robbery:

Congratulations to the Fontana Gang Unit: Melissa Veloz was sentenced to 8 years in state prison for carjacking with the use of a firearm:

Congratulations to the Central Gang Unit: Hector Aleman was sentenced to 20 years in state prison for ATTEMPTED MURDER:

Central Gang Unit files Assault Weapon charges against three gang members:

For more information and a behind-the-scenes look at our Gang Unit,
click here.


October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month

Here are several events taking place within the community that may be of interest:


Friday, September 20, 2013

New Shelter In San Bernardino Helps Victims Of Human Trafficking, Prostitution

Twelfth Annual Blue Mass

All sworn and non-sworn public safety personnel and their families are invited to this non-denominational celebration October 9, 2013 at 6 pm. See invited below.

Crimes go uninvestigated at care homes

Elder abuse, sexual assault and other acts regularly go uninvestigated as crimes at assisted living homes across California, as the facilities fall into a jurisdictional haze in which the first response is often administrative sanctions.
The U-T and the Center for Health Reporting at the University of Southern California examined more than 80 possible crimes at San Diego County senior homes in the past 10 years for which criminal investigations were never launched or fizzled due to delays.
Tristan Svare, a supervising prosecutor for San Bernardino County, said he spends a lot of time educating people in law enforcement on these issues.
“Just like a bank robbery or any other serious crime, we need to be there as soon as possible, collecting evidence, interviewing witnesses,” Svare said. “Whether you think the case is a winner or a stinker, you need to report it to the district attorney.”
To read the story by Jeff McDonald in the U-T San Diego, click here.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Inside the News: September 11, 2013

San Bernardino man convicted of human trafficking
Lori Fowler, San Bernardino Sun

SAN BERNARDINO >> For the first time since Prop. 35 was passed in California, a local man convicted Tuesday of pimping could face a life sentence in prison.

Christopher Lee Knox is the first defendant locally to face an elevated sentence following his conviction of human trafficking with the use of force allegation, officials said.

Prop 35, which was overwhelmingly passed by voters last year, increases prison sentences and fines for human trafficking convictions.

“The defendant took advantage of this vulnerable victim, physically assaulted her, and used her to traffic sex,” San Bernardino County District Attorney Michael A. Ramos said. “Today’s verdict was the perfect example of how this was going to work,” he said of Prop 35.

Click here to read more.

Convicted Pimp Faces New, Harsher Penalty
Brandon Lowrey & Tony Shin, NBC

A man convicted Tuesday of forcing a teen into prostitution in San Bernardino is the first to face new, harsher penalties for human trafficking offenses, authorities said.

Christopher Lee Knox, 28, faces 15 years to life in prison when he is sentenced. Authorities said that Knox was a pimp who brutalized prostitutes under his control, beating them and zapping them with a stun gun disguised to look like a cell phone.

To view the segment, click here.

Trial continues for Victorville man accused of murder
Rebecca Howes, Daily Press

VICTORVILLE • Testimony continued Tuesday in the murder trial of Maurice Hunt, 35, of Victorville, who is accused by prosecutors of killing a 20-year-old Victorville woman with a car on June 20, 2011.

The San Bernardino County district attorney’s office believes Hunt purposely drove his aunt’s white Cadillac into several people attending a party at an apartment in the 14700 block of Mesa Drive, killing Mercedes Toi Bradley.

Deputy District Attorney Lisa Crane called several witnesses on Tuesday including Christopher Dicola, a mechanic who testified that the Cadillac the defendant drove that day was free of mechanical defects, specifically regarding the brakes, steering and acceleration systems of the vehicle.

Click here to read more.



San Bernardino Public Safety Academy hosts 9/11 remembrance: DA Ramos, keynote speaker

SAN BERNARDINO >> About 300 Public Safety Academy cadets in formation proudly saluted the American flag as it was raised above their school at San Bernardino International Airport on Wednesday morning.

It was the 12th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, and dignitaries emphasized not only the importance of remembering the lives lost, but also rallied people to support future police and firefighters.

District Attorney Michael A. Ramos also reflected on 9/11, saying many people likely remember where they were at the time the planes struck the World Trade Center.

But he said the country’s work in fighting terrorism isn’t over, even on a local scale.
He pointed out his office’s creation of a Crimes Against Peace Officers Unit in May, an effort to crack down on gang members, or what Ramos calls “local terrorists.”

“We need to protect the men and women who wear badges everyday,” he said.
Click here to read more from Melissa Pinion-Whit at The Sun.

Junior Deputy District Attorney Sticker Badges

If you are interested in sporting one of our free Junior Deputy District Attorney sticker badges, stop by one of our branch offices and ask the receptionist for a badge. To find the office nearest you, click here.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Inside the News: September 10, 2013

Suspected serial killer's trial set to begin
Rebecca Howes, Daily Press

SAN BERNARDINO • The murder trial of a suspected serial killer and three-time convicted rapist apprehended by two former Daily Press pressmen in 2006 is scheduled to begin Monday, according to court records.

John Wayne Thomson, 53, was arrested Aug. 7, 2006, on suspicion of the fatal stabbing of Charles Hedlund, 55, of Lucerne Valley. Thomson was also charged with robbery, aggravated mayhem, carjacking and two counts of attempted car jacking, records show.

Hedlund was fatally stabbed after he stopped on the side of the road in the Cajon Pass to help Thomson. Hedlund’s abandoned truck, the interior soaked with blood, was found in the vicinity of Cajon Pass on August 2, 2006.

Click here to read more. 

Legislative leaders, Gov. reach compromise on prison population reduction
Don Thompson, The Associated Press
Lori Fowler, San Bernardino Sun

SACRAMENTO >> Gov. Jerry Brown and the four leaders of California’s Legislature reached a compromise Monday on reducing the state’s prison population, offering to spend more money on rehabilitation efforts if a panel of federal judges will extend an end-of-the-year deadline to release thousands of inmates.

The deal relies on the state persuading three federal judges to give California time to let rehabilitation programs work rather than spend $315 million to lease cells in private prisons and county jails.

Local officials said they are pleased with the compromise.

San Bernardino County District Attorney Michael A. Ramos said he supports the recent outcome for two reasons — the most important being it avoids early release of inmates.

“We have reached our limit of non-violent felons, we can’t let anymore out,” Ramos said Monday. “This is a good compromise for me.”

Click here to read more. 

Planned shows of remembrance for 9/11
Daily Press


Local military, schools and authorities, along with the city of Barstow, will put on or participate in separate shows of remembrance Wednesday for 9/11.

The Fort Irwin National Training Center will remember 9/11 by breaking ground on a memorial site.

The groundbreaking ceremony will begin 10 a.m. on post at the intersection of Langford Lake and Barstow roads. The memorial will be dedicated to the 2,996 people who died during the terrorist attacks 12 years ago.


Victorville girl, 6, identified as homicide victim
Melissa Pinion-Whit, San Bernardino Sun

MORENO VALLEY -- A 6-year-old girl who died Sunday following a shooting in Moreno Valley has been identified as a Victorville resident.

Tiana Ricks was pronounced dead at Riverside County Regional Medical Center in Moreno Valley at 12:09 a.m., less than three hours after the shooting in the 25000 block of Harker Lane, Riverside County coroner’s officials said.

Click here to read more.

District Attorney agrees to medical transport for soldier shooting trial
Melissa Pinion-Whit, San Bernardino Sun

SAN BERNARDINO >> Army Spec. Christopher Sullivan has one wish to find some closure in the December 2011 homecoming party shooting that left him a quadriplegic.

The Purple Heart recipient hopes to face his alleged attacker, Ruben Ray Jurado, in a courtroom.

“I’m still here. I want to be able to let him see what he’s done to me,” said Sullivan, now a Texas resident.

Click here to read more.

San Bernardino man convicted of human trafficking
Lori Fowler, San Bernardino Sun

SAN BERNARDINO >> For the first time since Prop. 35 was passed in California, a local man who was convicted this morning of human trafficking could face a life sentence, official said.

Christopher Lee Knox is now the first defendant in the state to be eligible for the increased prison sentences and fines for human trafficking convictions spurred by the 2012 proposition.

Knox, 28, was found guilty today of procuring another person for the purpose of prostitution, pimping a minor, and persuading a minor to engage in commercial sex, according to court records.

He faces 15 years to life.

The jury started deliberating on Monday inside the San Bernardino Superior Courthouse after a 5-day trial. They announced they had a verdict this morning.

Click here to read more.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Inside the News: September 9, 2013

San Bernardino DA Michael A. Ramos talks tough on crime, corruption
Doug Saunders, San Bernardino Sun

San Bernardino County District Attorney Michael A. Ramos announced last week his intent to run for re-election in 2014. His announcement came after a tenure of prosecuting a range of cases in San Bernardino County, from gang violence to alleged corruption. He’s also created the office’s Human Trafficking Unit.

Q: What do you feel has been your greatest achievement since you first took office in 2003?

A: I’ve had many great achievements since taking over this office. When I came into office I re-established partnerships in law enforcement to better our resources in fighting crime. I’ve created several task forces to focus on major crime throughout the county and victims’ rights to justice.

Click here to read more.

For the month of August 2013, our office obtained 307 state prison commitments for a total of 16,522 total months.

Friday, September 6, 2013

#InTheNews: September 6, 2013

San Bernardino couple arrested after 3-year-old ingests meth
Melissa Pinion-Whit, San Bernardino Sun

SAN BERNARDINO -- Sheriff’s deputies arrested a woman and her boyfriend Wednesday after the woman’s 3-year-old daughter ingested methamphetamine.

Alexis Parker, 27, and Tony Medrano, 43, both of San Bernardino were arrested on suspicion of child endangerment, sales of methamphetamine and possession of dangerous weapons. Medrano, a convicted sex offender, was also suspected of being a felon in possession of ammunition. They were booked into Central Detention Center in San Bernardino.

To view a copy of the charging document, click here.

42-year-old Billie Joe Coffey of Chino Hills charged for attacking deputies with a knife. Read more:  

Doug Saunders, San Bernardino Sun

SAN BERNARDINO >> The San Bernardino County District Attorney’s Office released a report Thursday ruling the fatal 2011 shooting of a Victorville man by sheriff’s deputies was justified.

Investigating a suspected case of domestic violence, sheriff’s deputies Kent Watson and Jonathan Andersen were informed by a resident that his daughter’s boyfriend was fighting with her in the backyard of his home, according to the report.

Click here to view the full report.

Congratulations to the Central Gang Unit. Documented gang member Charles Goins sentenced to 16 years state prison for attempted murder.

Liset Marquez, Daily Bulletin

GRAND TERRACE >> San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department is looking for the public’s help in identifying three male suspects involved in a robbery Monday morning that sent a grocery employee to the hospital.

Security cameras caught three men entering a Stater Bros in Grand Terrace at 10:14 a.m. The grabbed two bottles of liquor and ran out the store, according to a news release.

Deputies crackdown on ‘Cruise Night' in AV
Rebecca Howes, Daily Press

APPLE VALLEY • In two separate night operations, San Bernardino County Sheriff's deputies arrested eight people for unlawfully gathering for a “Cruise Night” in Apple Valley, according to a news release from the Apple Valley Sheriff's Station.

Documented gang members charged with murder:   


Thursday, September 5, 2013

#InTheNews: September 5, 2013

San Bernardino County District Attorney Mike Ramos (Rachel Luna / Staff Photographer)

DA Ramos to run for office next year
Doug Saunders, San Bernardino Sun

SAN BERNARDINO >> Sitting in his office beside an American flag, District Attorney Michael A. Ramos announced Wednesday his intention to run for re-election next year.

Ramos, who has held office since 2003, said he’s received several opportunities to run for other political offices, but has turned them down in order to continue as San Bernardino County district attorney.

“It’s been an honor to serve this county as dstrict attorney,” Ramos said. “There are still things I want to accomplish and finish what we’ve started in many areas of this office.”

COLUMN: Gov. Brown made right call on Norco prison: Michael Ramos

I support the recent decision by Gov. Brown to keep the Norco prison open. As we all continue to deal with aftermath of prison reform, this is a good move after the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent direction to release more prisoners.

As chairman of the National District Attorneys Association’s Committee on Corrections and Prison Re-entry, I can say that this is an issue being felt across the country. In fact, just last month, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder pushed the issue of sentencing and prison overcrowding.

Dog rescued from hot car outside L.A. County Fair
Brian Day, San Gabriel Valley Tribune

A small terrier rescued from a hot car on the opening day of the L.A. County Fair last week during triple-digit temperatures serves as a reminder to never leave pets or children unattended in vehicles, Pomona police officials said Wednesday.