Tag Archives: crime

LAPD Community Alert – Catalytic Converters

This is an LAPD community alert regarding thieves targeting catalytic converters. A catalytic converter is a vehicle emissions control device that converts toxic pollutants in exhaust gas to less toxic pollutants, by catalyzing a redox reaction (oxidation of reduction). Catalytic converters are used in internal combustion engines fueled by either petrol (gasoline) or diesel-including lean burn engines.

Because of the external location and the use of valuable precious metals including platinum, palladium, rhodium, and gold, converters are a target for thieves. The problem is especially common among the following vehicles, Honda, Acura, Toyota and Lexus trucks and SUVs because of their high ground clearance and easily removed bolt-on catalytic converters. Theft removal of the converter can often inadvertently damage the car’s wiring or fuel line resulting in dangerous consequences. Rises in metal costs in the U.S. during recent years have led to a large increase in theft incidents of the converter, which can cost well over $1,000. to replace.

Important Telephone Numbers
For additional Crime Prevention information, Log on: www.lapdonline.org

LA DWP Scam Alert


Beware of Impostors Posing as LADWP Workers

Who Seek Bill Payment Over the Phone

LOS ANGELES – The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) cautions customers to beware of impostors posing as utility personnel making service-related telephone calls. These impostors seek to obtain money via a bogus unpaid LADWP balance by asking the customer to go to a nearby convenient store (7-11) and call a specific telephone number back with the customer’s financial information, or by demanding that they pay their bill with a pre-paid cash card (GREEN DOT MONEY PAK).

LADWP customers have reported increasing incidents of this scam, and the Department is acutely aware of this scheme and on security alert regarding this and other fraudulent practices. The LADWP never calls customers seeking personal banking information.

“Distraction telephone calls are an important issue for us but the good news is, this form of victimization is easily preventable,” said Patrick Findley, Director of LADWP Security Services Division. “The more our customers know about it, the less likely it is to happen, so help us spread the word among your family, friends and neighbors.”

To report suspicious activity to the Department: call LADWP Security Services at (213) 367-3373 or (213) 367-9111, or email SecurityServicesWebNotification, or visitwww.ladwp.com and click Security Issue under Contact Us.

If you have been a victim or have questions, call us LAPD Wilshire Detectives (213)922-8205 These crooks have targeted residences and businesses and is not only isolated to the Los Angeles Area. Inform your friends, neighbors, family and local eateries about this ongoing scam.

LAPD Advisory: Wilshire Area Stolen and Burglarized Vehicle Incidents


Wilshire Area Stolen and Burglarized Vehicle Incidents

January 31, 2014 NR14027rf
Wilshire Area Incidents of Stolen and Burglarized Vehicles
Police Share Concerns and Prevention Tips

Los Angeles: The Los Angeles Police Department’s Wilshire Area would like to warn the public about problems with vehicle-related thefts and burglaries in the Wilshire Area.

For 2014, Wilshire auto detectives are asking the public to be more vigilant in helping to prevent vehicle thefts and related burglaries. Detectives believe public awareness and efforts, coupled with ongoing Wilshire Area police strategies have the potential to significantly reduce these crimes this year by establishing an effective partnership between the Department and the community.

The vehicle thieves are primarily targeting 1990s to early 2000s Hondas and Toyotas. Based on previous incidents and reports, if the public is diligent in taking the following steps, detectives believe their efforts will reduce auto-related thefts:

• Always lock and secure your vehicle, and ensure all keys are accounted for; never leave “spare” keys in your car.
• Never park your car with the keys left inside (even in your own driveway). Wilshire Area Autos Coordinator Detective Carmine Sasso points to an actual case in which the victim said he left his car parked in his driveway with the keys in it, because he lived in a “nice area.”
• Be aware of where you park your car. Is the area well-lighted? Is it an area that is frequented by pedestrian and vehicle traffic? Some people have actually forgotten where they parked their cars and mistakenly reported it stolen.
• Do not leave motorcycles parked in one location for an extended period of time. Motorcycle thieves typically “watch” a motorcycle for a while and then simply drive by with a van, cut any locking device and easily load the motorcycle into the back of a van.
• Consider installing a multifunctional vehicle alarm system.

These additional inexpensive steps may be taken to thwart auto thieves:

• Utilize steering wheel and/or brake pedal locking devices that can be especially helpful in protecting those vehicles that are primarily targeted (as noted above). They’re easy to use and may be purchased at any auto parts store, and their high visibility will likely encourage a prospective thief to move on to a vehicle that is easier to steal.
• Have a mechanic install an ignition “kill switch” to temporarily disable your vehicle when not in use.

Following are some additional common-sense steps the public can take to deter auto thefts:

• Always lock and make sure your car is secured. This means physically checking to make certain your car is locked, since automatic key fobs do not always work. Car burglars typically check car doors.
• “Lock It, Hide It, Keep It” is a Department-wide campaign to help prevent thefts from vehicles. Its premise is simple: Never leave anything in plain sight, including loose change in the center console. As a car burglar scans the interior of a car for valuables (i.e. loose change, laptop computers, shopping bags, wallets, cell phones, phone chargers, etc.), the thief will probably check the car door to see if it’s unlocked. But if nothing is visible, he will typically move on to the next car with valuables in plain sight. If that car is locked, the thief will often smash a window and quickly grab whatever valuables he can. Surprisingly, detectives have been advised by victims that they would leave their cars unlocked rather than risk having their car windows smashed. This practice is definitely not encouraged, since thieves are very likely to ransack unlocked cars for anything they can steal.
• Do not store clothes and other personal items in your vehicle, making your car an extension of your home closet. Many victims of car theft have routinely left such personal property in their cars.
• When using a valet service to park, consider where the valet will park your car and if the service is reputable. In a recent incident, through a video surveillance system, detectives saw a valet remove a briefcase from the trunk of a victim’s car.
• When shopping, try not to make repeated trips to your parked vehicle to drop off your shopping bags and continue shopping. Car burglars will loiter in commercial parking structures to watch out for those who “secure” their recent purchases so they can execute a quick “smash and grab.”
• Be aware of locations frequented by car burglars, such as commercial and residential parking structures, subterranean multi-unit residential carports and side streets off major thoroughfares.

Some specific parts and furnishings that car thieves are seeking:

• Another crime recently on the rise is theft of catalytic converters, primarily from 1990s Toyota trucks, because they contain certain precious metals, especially platinum. Again, always parking in well-lighted areas at night may prevent these thefts.
• Third-row seats, primarily from Chevrolet Suburban vehicles, have become a target of car burglars.
• Occasionally, there have been thefts of headlight assemblies, exterior rearview mirrors and steering wheel airbags from late-model European automobiles.

Although Detective Sasso has detailed the aforementioned steps and information to help decrease auto-related crimes in LAPD’s Wilshire Area, he emphasizes how effective this information can be to help reduce these crimes on a citywide basis. Spreading the word about how to reduce these and other crimes has the potential to make a positive impact and improve the quality of life throughout the City of Los Angeles.

Questions may be directed to Wilshire Area Autos Coordinator Detective Carmine S. Sasso at (213) 473-0556. During non-business hours or on weekends, calls should be directed to 1-877-LAPD-24-7 (1-877-527-3247). Anyone wishing to remain anonymous should call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (800-222-8477). Tipsters may also contact Crime Stoppers by texting to phone number 274637 (C-R-I-M-E-S on most keypads) with a cell phone. All text messages should begin with the letters “LAPD.” Tipsters may also go to www.lapdonline.org, and click on “Anonymous Web Tips.”

Crime & Nuisance Prevention Training for Rental Property Owners and Managers

Rental property owners, managers, REO asset managers and Law Enforcement all know the challenges of dealing with criminal and nuisance issues.

Join in for a class on how to address those issues and proactively work with law enforcement and communities on one of the following dates:

* November 20, 2013 / Wednesday / 9 A.M. to 1 P.M.
AAGLA Training Room
621 S. Westmoreland Avenue, Los Angeles CA 90005

* Dec. 4, 2013 / Wednesday / 5:30 to 9:30 P.M.
Southland Regional Board of Realtors
7232 Balboa Boulevard, Van Nuys CA 91406

Managing a Safer More Profitable Rental Property:
• Reduce the cost of owning or managing property

• Improve property values

• Improve quality of life

• Help communities reduce crime

Who should attend:
• Rental property owners and managers

• Hotel /Motel owners and managers

• REO Asset managers

• Law enforcement personnel

For information and registration, go to www.PEELIAN.com
Arnie Corlin
Peelian Consulting LLC
8726 S. Sepulveda Blvd., Suite D-2111, Los Angeles CA 90045
Cell : (310) 308-4511 / Fax : (310) 216-1199
Email: acorlin
Web Site: www.PEELIAN.com

Street Lighting Copper Wire Theft

Please find attached a map that depicts the street lighting wire theft(s) that has occurred within Council District 10 over the last 30 days. This problem puts neighborhoods in the dark and financially strains the City’s assessment fund for street lighting operations. As a result of recommendations from the Department of Public Works Wire Theft Task Force this information is being forwarded for use in impacted community meetings or as notifications to your local LAPD patrols.

Also, attached is a flyer that notifies residents of this problem and the appropriate actions they should take if they see suspicious activity. If you have any questions please contact Fabian Cheng at (213) 847 1459.

Copper Theft Flyer – Spanish (3).pdf

CopperTheft Flyer – English.pdf


Home Safety Alert – Plus Holiday Safety Tips from LAPD

CD-10 has gotten a few reports of attempted home robberies in the MINC area lately (one reported in LaFayette Square).  Apparently, the perpetrators are watching houses very closely, and are attempting to enter the homes immediately after they think the housekeeper or others have left the house.  They have known enough about the neighborhood to say that they were looking for a different address (in the neighborhood) when caught, and before leaving the premises very quickly.  In another report, they claimed that they thought the property was listed for sale, and that’s why they were on the premises.

The point is that these criminals are getting smarter and smarter about how they’re trying to break into homes, so please be on the lookout.  And as a precaution, check out the list of Holiday Safety Tips provided by the LAPD.

Telephone Scam Being Used By Inmates & Others

Telephone Scam Being Used By Inmates & Others

Members of the public are being tricked by jail inmates and others through a telephone scam.

The increasing pattern was noticed by deputies with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, who have been receiving an increasing number of phone calls from people who have been scammed.

Members of the public have been calling the Sheriff’s Department and asking to talk to a specific deputy, detective, or sergeant who had just called them. The real deputy who answers the phone explains they are mistaken, as the named deputy does not exist or is not on duty.

The scam begins by the victim caller receiving a call from a person claiming to be a deputy. This imposter tells the victim that one of their family member’s has been incarcerated or involved in an accident. The imposter then informs the victim caller that their family member provided the victim caller’s name as an emergency contact.

The victim caller is then instructed to call a number that begins with *72 (Example: *72-323-555-1212) to get the information they will need. When the victim caller hangs up and dials the number provided, they are told they have a wrong number.

Concerned for the safety of their family member, the victim caller then calls an information line (4-1-1) and asks for a number to the Sheriff’s Department. They are then connected with a real deputy.

However, since the victim caller used the prefix *72 to initiate their last phone call, they have just automatically forwarded all their incoming calls to the scammer’s phone number (These include collect calls from inmates who want to avoid paying for collect calls). The billing for these forwarded calls goes to the victim caller until they turn off call forwarding on their phone (usually by dialing *73).

If not careful, Victims can be scammed out of a lot of money in collect-call fees before they find this out.

Do Not Dial *72 unless you want to forward your calls.

If you have been involved in this scam, and you have already dialed a number beginning with *72, contact your phone service provider to learn how to shut off automatic call forwarding.

For more information regarding this scam, please read the below alert from the California Public Utilities Commission for further details, recommendations and recourse.

Deputy Mark Pope
Deputy Robert Boese III
Captain Mike Parker
Sheriff’s Headquarters Bureau – Newsroom
Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department
(323) 267- 4800

Leroy D. Baca, Sheriff
Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department


Consumers should be aware of a phone scam that can leave you with high phone bills. It starts when scammers call you pretending to be with the police or sheriff’s department, public safety agencies, or hospitals. They may make up a story about your child or other loved one being hurt in an accident. They then tell you to call the officer at the scene of the accident by dialing *72 and a phone number they provide you.


By dialing *72 at the beginning of a call, you will activate call forwarding, if you subscribe to it, and all calls to your phone number will be forwarded to the phone number that the scammers gave you.

When that happens, you may be billed a charge each time a call is forwarded to the other number. You may also be billed long distance charges, including collect call charges if applicable. Calls will continue to forward until you turn off the call forwarding feature. In some cases *73 turns off call forwarding, but that may vary depending on which phone company and the type of call forwarding service you subscribe to.

By getting you to activate your call forwarding feature and providing you with a number (it could be to an expensive pay-per-call service, the East Coast, etc.), the scammers can then call that number by dialing your phone number and you will be billed the additional charges. Don’t let this happen to you!

You may have call forwarding as a feature of your landline or wireless service. If you are unsure if you have it, ask your phone company. Also not all call forwarding is activated by *72. If you have call forwarding, find out how to use it, as well as all your other services.

If this does happen to you, call your phone company to dispute the charges and report it to the California Public Utilities Commission’s consumer hotline at 800-649-7570.

California Public Utilities Commission Consumer Hotline
(800) 649-7570




Partner to prevent or report crime by contacting your local Sheriff’s station. Or if you wish to remain Anonymous, call “LA Crime Stoppers” by dialing 800-222-TIPS (8477), texting the letters TIPLA plus your tip to CRIMES (274637), or using the website http://lacrimestoppers.org

To receive more detailed, up-to-date information directly from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department (LASD) via e-mail, register for “Nixle” alerts at www.Nixle.com or more directly at https://local.nixle.com/register/ and register for “LASD – Headquarters Newsroom (SHB), Los Angeles County Sheriff” and your local LASD station area. Or, text your zip code to 888777 to receive text alerts only. Standard text messaging rates may apply depending on your calling plan.