Identity theft prevention: 12 tips

With over nine million victims each year nationally, identity theft is the fastest growing crime in Los Angeles County.  In the cyber age, where information is dispersed across the web, just being careful isn’t enough to protect your identity.  If you are serious about protecting yourself, the 12 tips below courtesy of of will get you started.

Identity theft starts with the misuse of your personal identifying information such as your name, Social Security number, credit card numbers, or other financial account information.

Check your credit report from each of the three major credit bureaus every year.

Open your credit card bills and bank statements right away. Review your statements and close unused accounts. Be aware if bills don’t arrive on time.

Don’t carry your Social Security card or PIN numbers in your purse or wallet.

Avoid giving any personal information over the phone, mail, or Internet unless you know who you are dealing with.

Verify credentials when solicited for donations.

Keep a helpful eye for elderly family members and vulnerable neighbors.

Make sure that you disconnect your laptop from a broadband or a shared connection when you are not using it.

Avoid offers and pop-ups that sound too good to be true.

Remove your name from mailing lists for pre-approved credit offers. Call toll-free 888-5OPTOUT (888-567-8688).

Only enter personal information on secure web pages that encrypt your data in transit.

If you’re going to use a mail box, do so during or close to the posted pick up hours. Retrieve mail promptly and discontinue delivery while out of town.

Crime is down in Los Angeles County and the Second District

This will include:

• Five Sheriff Stations in SD2 with links to crime statistics for each station

  • Requires meeting with Sheriff crime analysts



Neighborhood Watch resource kit

Neighborhood Watch
Los Angeles County has had a tradition of isolation that creates and feeds crime. There is no better way to combat isolation, foster community, and crack down on crime than the creation of a Neighborhood Watch. Throughout the years, Neighborhood Watch has grown from an “extra eyes and ears” approach to an all encompassing crime prevention partnership. This proactive community-oriented endeavor now includes the active involvement of residents with their local law enforcement. It is one of the most effective and least costly ways to prevent crime while forging bonds among area residents.

Neighbors working together in cooperation with law enforcement makes the best crime fighting team around. Any community resident can join a Neighborhood Watch; young or old, single or married, renter or homeowner. Members can learn how to make their homes more secure, watch out for each other and the neighborhood, and report suspicious activities to the Sheriff’s Department. You can form a Neighborhood Watch group for any area: a street, mobile home park, apartment complex, marina, community recreation center, or park. Neighborhood Watch groups are not vigilantes. They are extra eyes and ears for reporting crime and helping neighbors. Neighborhood Watch builds pride and serves as a springboard for efforts that address community needs. Citizen involvement is essential to combat this social crisis.

Starting a Neighborhood Watch
Contact your local Sheriff’s station for assistance in training residents in home security and reporting crime. Select a block captain who will be responsible for organizing meetings and relaying information to group members. Encourage participation and commitment among residents and neighbors. Make a special effort to involve the elderly. If you are interested in becoming a block captain, call your local Sheriff’s station’s Crime Prevention Unit for additional information.

Suspicious Activities to look for

  • Someone screaming or shouting for help, or being forced into a vehicle
  • Someone looking into windows or parked cars
  • Property being taken out of closed businesses or houses where no one is at home
  • Vehicles cruising aimlessly
  • Someone spraying graffiti on buildings
  • Strangers sitting in a car, stopping to talk to kids
  • Abandoned vehicles, suspicious people, unusual noises
  • A sudden change in a neighbor’s routine: newspapers piling up; drapes drawn; mailbox overflowing with mail
Enhance your Community well-being
  • Organize regular meetings to discuss current issues such as: childcare for school age kids, drug abuse, gang activity, hate crimes, recreational activities for young people
  • Encourage the use of deadbolt locks, smoke alarms and other safety devices in homes and commercial buildings
  • Adopt a school or playground; start a block parent program
  • Form a disaster preparedness program for your neighborhood
Volunteers on Patrol (VOP)

The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Civilian Volunteers are dedicated to providing excellent service through relationships that build trust, create a safe environment, and enhance the quality of life in our communities within a “Tradition of Service”. Members of VOP strive to be proud representatives of the community by being highly visible while on patrol. The primary objectives for the members shall be to prevent crime by mere presence, or identify public hazards. Members shall also act as the eyes and ears of the Sheriff’s Department by identifying suspicious activities, crimes in progress, or dangerous circumstances. The members shall not take action themselves, but shall notify the proper authorities for handling. The Volunteers On Patrol members accept their mission to serve the community with the enduring belief that in so doing, they will maintain the high level of safety, quality of life, and the beauty of the community that everyone is entitled.  For more information on requirements, click here.  Sign up now by clicking here.

Information is provided courtesy of Los Angeles County Sheriff Department.  For more information on Community / Law Enforcement Program, click here or call 323-526-5015 or email by clicking here.


Inferno takes two lives

One woman died and firefighters later recovered the remains of another person, from the aftermath of an arson blaze that took place Friday morning at 1026 East Vernon Avenue in South Los Angeles. The fire was reported at 5:51 AM on Friday, March 2, 2012, bringing the swift response of 67 Los Angeles Firefighters, who discovered well-entrenched flames throughout an abandoned and apparently secured 50′ x 50′ one-story residential-business conversion. Despite fire-induced physical compromise of the clearly vandalized wood-frame and stucco structure that included a basement, the report of one or more persons trapped inside led LAFD crews to relentlessly search the flame-filled premises, with firefighters quickly discovering, rescuing and providing care to a critically injured woman – who later died at an area hospital.

The fire was extinguished in just 32 minutes.


Despite credible reports that a second person seen earlier with the woman had fled prior to the Fire Department’s arrival, the LAFD immediately deployed a specially trained cadaver search dog and handler to scour remnants of the building, which was destroyed by the fast-moving fire.  Returning to the debris-filled scene in the two days that followed, neighborhood firefighters were able to uncover evidence of human remains on Sunday morning. They then devoted themselves to working alongside Coroner’s officials and Investigators in seeing that the victim was removed and handled with the utmost of dignity and respect. A positive identification of the deceased – to include their age and gender, as well as the precise cause, time and manner of their deaths will be determined by the County of Los Angeles Department of Coroner. LAFD Investigators, who enlisted the aid of an accelerant detecting canine, determined the fire to be a deliberate act. Monetary loss from the fire has yet to be tabulated.

No other injuries were reported.

Those with information regarding this double-fatality blaze are encouraged to contact the LAFD Arson/Counter-Terrorism Section directly at (213) 893-9800.

Article courtesy of the Los Angeles Fire Department.

Public safety facilities in the second district

Second Supervisorial District

Sheriff Stations

Carson Station
Captain Bernice Abrams
Acting Captain, Lt. Eddie Rivero
21356 S. Avalon Blvd.
Carson 90745
Business Phone: 310-830-1123

Century Station
Captain Joseph M. Gooden
11703 S. Alameda Street
Lynwood, 90262
Business Phone: (323)568-4800

Compton Station
Captain Diane E. Walker
301 S. Willowbrook Ave.
Compton, 90221
Business Phone: (310) 605-6500

Marina Del Rey Station
Captain Oceal Victory
13851 Fiji Way
Marina Del Rey  90292
Business Phone: 310-482-6000

South Los Angeles Station
Captain Matt Dendo
1310 W. Imperial Avenue
Los Angeles, 90044
Business Phone: (323) 820-6700

Probation Department Field Offices

Centinela Area Office
La Carla Williams, Director
1330 W. Imperial Highway
Los Angeles, CA 90044
Tel: (323) 241-5800

Crenshaw Area Office
Deborah Weathersby, Director
3606 W Exposition Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90016
Tel: (323) 298-3511

Firestone Area Office
Mark Garcia, Director
8526 S. Grape St.
Los Angeles, CA 90001
Tel: (323) 586-6469

Compton Area Office
200 W. Compton Bl., Suite 300
Compton, CA 90220
Tel (310) 603-7311

Adult Day Reporting Center

Adult Day Reporting Center
Kathy New, Director
5811 S. San Pedro Street
Los Angeles, CA 90011
Office Reception
Tel: (323) 235- 7047

Realignment HUBs

Realignment HUB
Adult Day Reporting Center
Kimberly Tillman, Supervisor
5811 S. San Pedro Street
Los Angeles, CA 90011
Tel: (323) 235-7047

Lynwood Regional Justice Center
Realignment HUB
Kimberly Tillman, Supervisor
11701 Alameda Street
Lynwood, CA 90262
Tel: (323) 357-5545

$100M in PCP, $389K in cash, and assault weapons seized

Members of the Los Angeles Interagency Metropolitan Police Apprehension Crime Task Force (L.A. IMPACT) seized more than 130 gallons of finished Phencyclidine (PCP) along with precursor chemicals to manufacture an additional 500 gallons of PCP and two assault weapons. Also recovered was $389,000.00 in United States currency.

The investigation stemmed from information received from Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Special Agents in Los Angeles. L.A. IMPACT investigators developed the case and during the month-long investigation, L.A. IMPACT investigators learned that a suspect with links to a Los Angeles street gang was actively involved with the manufacturing of PCP. The investigation revealed that the suspect’s organization would distribute PCP across the country via commercial package delivery companies.


Investigators observed and intercepted suspicious deliveries that were addressed to locations in Texas. Investigators detected a chemical odor emitting from these boxes and tests later confirmed that each box contained approximately three (3) gallons of PCP. Based on the above information, L.A. IMPACT investigators, along with members of the Los Angeles Police Department served search warrants at multiple locations. During those searches, they recovered another 121 gallon of PCP, firearms, and the above mentioned U.S. currency.

Additional PCP information:
*There is an estimated 76,800 individual doses in one gallon of PCP.
*Total estimated individual doses for the 130 gallons of of PCP seized is 9,984,000.
*The average user will be under the influence of PCP for approximately 24 hours per dose.
*One dose of PCP in Los Angeles County costs between $10 and $20.
*PCP costs $12,000 to $15,000 per gallon in Los Angeles County and $35,000 to $65,000 per gallon in Dallas.
*Total estimated street value of 130 gallons of PCP in Los Angeles is approx. $99,849,000.
*Users describe dream-like states or out of body experiences when under the influence of PCP.

News Release – L.A. IMPACT
Lieutenant Scott Fairfield
Deputy Director
Los Angeles Interagency Metropolitan Police Apprehension Crime Task Force (L.A. IMPACT)

* Law Enforcement Working Together*

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

Forwarded by:
Sheriff’s Headquarters Bureau – Newsroom
Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department
(323) 267-4800

Sheriff impersonation in Lawndale causes investigation

South Los Angeles Sheriff’s Station detectives are investigating the report of an individual believed to be impersonating a motorcycle enforcement deputy sheriff.

A man driving a motorcycle equipped with flashing blue and red lights stopped a motorist near the area of 147th Street and Inglewood Avenue in the City of Lawndale. The man, described as a 35-40 year old white male, was wearing a tan uniform shirt and green pants similar to those worn by Los Angeles County deputy sheriffs however; the badge he was wearing appeared to be a fake. When the motorist asked the man what sheriff’s station he was assigned to, the individual remounted his motorcycle and rapidly sped off.

People who impersonate peace officers erode the public’s trust in law enforcement and undermine the authority of legitimate peace officers. Although the probability of being pulled over by someone impersonating a peace officer is remote, the following tips can help ensure the legitimacy of the stop:

• Try and stop in a well lit area, or in an area that can easily be seen by the general public.
• Ask for the officer/deputy to identify him or herself, especially if the person is wearing civilian clothing (all deputy sheriffs are required to carry their department issued identification card while on duty).
• Take note of any unusual or odd uniform markings.
• Be aware of any strange requests or overly personal questions being asked.
• When in doubt, ask to speak to a supervisor.
• Trust your instincts.

Anyone with any information regarding this incident is urged to call the South Los Angeles Station Detective Bureau at (323) 820-6700. Information can also be reported anonymously by calling LA Crime Stoppers at (800) 222-TIPS (8477) or through the LA Crime Stoppers website

Lieutenant Jeff Adams
South Los Angeles Sheriff’s Station
(323) 820-6700

Forwarded by:
Sheriff’s Headquarters Bureau – Newsroom
Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department
4700 Ramona Boulevard,
Monterey Park, CA 91754

Copper pipe thieves arrested crawling under Compton home

A call of people crawling under a home Saturday at 10:30am, sent sheriff’s deputies to a possible home burglary. Compton Sheriff’s Station deputies arrived at the vacant house on S. Tamarind Ave. in Compton within three minutes and heard voices coming from underneath the home.  Apparently the hidden suspects heard deputies asking for a sheriff’s K-9 unit and decided it was in their best interest to surrender.

The investigation by deputies revealed that the suspects were allegedly there to steal copper piping from underneath the home.

In thefts like this, copper plumbing piping is taken from a home, then the thieves typically go to a recycling center where the material is sold as scrap.

Two suspects who were arrested after crawling underneath the home were identified as 19-year old Guillermo Fraire (Bkg No. 3062957), and 18-year old Michele Damato (Bkg No. 3063003).

Also taken into custody was 25-year old Fatima Alvaro (Bkg No. 3062950) who waited in the get-away car outside the vacant home.

Inside the car, deputies found additional copper pipes taken from another residence.

The three suspects were arrested for residential burglary and booked at the Century Regional Detention Facility of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. Each has a bail set at $50,000.00. The three suspects are Compton residents.

It is unknown exactly how much piping was stolen / recovered, as this case is actively being investigated.

If you see something, say something. Call 9-1-1 or your local sheriff’s station or police department.

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

Lieutenant Art Chavez
Compton Sheriff’s Station
Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department
301 South Willowbrook Avenue
Compton, California
(310) 605-6500

Forwarded by:
Sheriff’s Headquarters Bureau – Newsroom
Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department
(323) 267-4800