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Laguna Beach

Police Files

Underage girl accosted on trolley by man who allegedly “pulled her hair”

On Friday, Aug 2, at 1:37 p.m., LBPD dispatch received a call from a female juvenile on a city trolley bus. 

According to LBPD Spokesperson PIO Sgt Jim Cota, “The girl reported a male subject was on the bus trying to touch her and a group of younger girls. The male was also reported to have been making comments about shooting up schools.”

Officers responded and the trolley stopped on South Coast Highway at Nyes Place. 

Sgt Cota said, “When the bus stopped the girls tried to get off bus and the subject [allegedly] grabbed one of the girl’s hair and pulled it. He also blocked another girl from reaching the doorway and the girl had to turn around and run for the back door.”

Officers detained the suspect, local transient Kyle Winton. 

Kyle Albert Winton, 39, was arrested on charges of child annoyance, false imprisonment, and battery on a minor. Winton, currently on probation for criminal threats, was placed on a probation hold. 

He was booked and transported to OC Jail.

No bail was set.

Two days earlier, on Wednesday, July 31, at 12:32 p.m., LBPD officers contacted Winton in the 200 block of South Coast Highway, who appeared to be heavily intoxicated. 

“Winton was unable to care for himself due to his level of intoxication and he was arrested without incident,” Sgt Cota said.

Bail was set at $500.

Editor’s Note: An arrest contains allegations that a suspect has committed a crime. Every suspect is presumed to be innocent until and unless proven guilty in court.

Woman reports man standing at the foot of her bed watching her at local hotel

On Wednesday, July 31, at 3:24 p.m., an LBPD officer was dispatched to the front counter for a citizen contact. The reporting party stated she was staying at a local hotel on July 10, at the 30800 block of South Coast Highway.

According to Sgt Cota, “While she was in bed with her partner she saw a male employee standing at the foot of their bed watching them. The victim contacted hotel security who stated they would investigate the issue.”

When the victim followed up with the hotel, she was reportedly told the employee no longer works there. 

“A police report was taken,” Sgt Cota said.

Falling trees and wires cause problems over the weekend

On Friday, Aug 2, at 7:17 p.m., a caller reported a 40-foot tree branch had fallen onto electrical wires on Castle Rock Road.  

According to Sgt Cota, “LBFD arrived and confirmed the live wires belonged to Edison. Edison responded and fixed the wires.”

 Also on Friday, at 8:21 p.m., a caller reported a large tree had fallen onto a parked car in the 100 block of Acacia Street.  

“Officers arrived and determined the tree had not struck the vehicle however it was blocking the southbound lane of Acacia,” Sgt Cota said. “The tree did not belong to the city and was on the apartments at 100 Cliff Drive.”

 Acacia Street was closed in both directions for 3.5 hours while the property owner of 100 Cliff Drive called a tree trimming service to cut down and remove the tree.  

Sgt Cota said, “A Nixle alert regarding the closure was sent. Tree trimming service arrived at 11 p.m. and the roadway was reopened at midnight.” 

Then on Saturday, Aug 3, at 12:29 p.m., LBFD received a call about a blown transformer and a minor power outage at Calliope Street and Glenneyre Street.

“This call was a blown transformer possibly caused by a bird. Edison notified and rectified the problem,” Sgt Cota said. 

Two people reported a bird ran into the wire initially causing some smoke and sparks.

The bird was reportedly a crow and “fried.”

-By Suzie Harrison

Police Files

Rollover crash on Wednesday lands driver in hospital

On Wednesday, July 31, at 8:55 a.m., LBPD officers and LBFD responded to a rollover traffic collision at South Coast Highway and West Street. 

According to LBPD, a BMW X5 was involved in a possible road rage incident and speeding northbound on South Coast Highway.

 “The BMW reportedly drove in the two-way left turn lane before quickly turning back into the northbound lanes and colliding with a Nissan Sentra,” LBPD Spokesperson PIO Sgt Jim Cota said. “The BMW flipped over during the collision and came to rest on its roof.” 

LBFD engineer paramedic Pat Cary said LBFD received a report of an overturned vehicle with occupants trapped.

“Engine 4 arrived on scene with Laguna Beach Battalion 2 and we found an overturned BMW with one occupant attempting to crawl out the side window,” Cary said. 

The driver of the BMW was able to exit through the passenger side door with minor injuries.

Police Files car crash

Click on photo for a larger image

Photo by Diane Armitage

BMW flips over during traffic collision

“The patient was a male in his 50s. He had lacerations to his arms and small abrasions to his legs and feet. He was alert and oriented and he self-extricated,” Cary said. “The patient was wearing his seatbelt. Airbags were deployed.”

The patient was assessed by LB paramedics on Engine 4 and due to the mechanism of injury (rollover) and some of his injuries, he was transported to the hospital.

“It was deemed appropriate to transfer him to Mission Hospital, Mission Viejo, which is a trauma center,” Cary said.

The driver of the Nissan was reportedly uninjured. 

Sgt Cota said, “South Coast Highway was shut down to one lane in each direction. All lanes were reopened at 10 a.m.”

LBPD helps residents with two fraud scams

On Wednesday, July 31, at 1:30 p.m., an LBPD officer was dispatched to a residence in the 1400 block of Coral Drive for a fraud report. The victim had been called from someone claiming to work for Apple. 

“The victim was tricked into providing the suspect with access to their computer and bank information. The suspect stole $500 from the victim’s bank account online,” Sgt Cota said. 

A report was taken to document the incident and the officer also forwarded the information to the FBI.

Also, on Wednesday, at 2:25 p.m., an officer was dispatched to the LBPD front counter for a fraud report. The victim had been called by someone claiming to be his grandson. 

“The caller told the victim that he had been involved in a traffic collision and had been arrested. The suspect talked the victim into sending $9,800 cash to an address in Florida for ‘bail,’” Sgt Cota said. “After they received the money, they stated the victim needed to send $17,000 for surgery expenses.” 

The victim sent $17,000 cash to an address in New Jersey. 

“While the package was on the way, the victim received a phone call from their grandson and realized it was a scam,” Sgt Cota said.

 The victim was able to cancel the shipment and the money was returned. A report was taken.

Man who allegedly threw heroin out of his vehicle window arrested on myriad charges

On Tuesday, July 30, at 12:04 a.m., at South Coast Highway and St Ann’s Drive, LBPD officers made a traffic stop and watched as the driver threw something out the passenger side window. 

According to Sgt Cota, “Officers recovered a small foil ball containing heroin. Mission Viejo resident Timothy David Bonner, 38, was subsequently arrested for possession of narcotics, possession of drug paraphernalia, driving on a suspended license, and a probation violation.” 

A probation hold was granted and he was transported to OC Jail.

No bail was set.

Editor’s Note: An arrest contains allegations that a suspect has committed a crime. Every suspect is presumed to be innocent until and unless proven guilty in court.

-By Suzie Harrison

Police Files

Man sentenced to life without possibility of parole for murdering Laguna Beach man

On Friday, July 26, Edward Younghoon Shin, 41, of Irvine, was sentenced to life without the possibility of parole for murdering his business partner, Laguna Beach resident Christopher Smith, in their San Juan Capistrano office to gain control of the victim’s shares of the company.

In 2010, Shin co-owned an Internet advertising business, 800xchange, with 33-year-old Christopher Smith, a Laguna Beach resident.

According to an Orange County District Attorney spokesperson, “On June 4, 2010, Shin murdered Smith in their San Juan Capistrano office and disposed of the body. He committed the murder for financial gain with the intention of gaining full ownership of the business. After the murder, Shin produced documents containing a false signature from Smith signing the rights of the business over to the defendant.”

Police Files Christopher Smith

Courtesy of OCSD

Laguna Beach resident Christopher Smith was murdered by his business partner Edward Shin

Shin was convicted in December 2018 of one felony count of murder with a sentencing enhancement for murder for financial gain.

Smith lived in Laguna Beach at the time of his murder. LBPD began investigating the case as a missing persons case based on a report filed by the victim’s family in April 2011. Shin had been sending fake emails from Smith’s account to his family and friends after he murdered him, pretending to be Smith, which stated he was traveling abroad.

 “From the onset of this investigation, Ed Shin mislead Laguna Beach Detectives and tried to cover up for his crime,” LBPD Capt Jason Kravetz said.

Police Files Edward Shin

Courtesy of OCSD

Edward Shin’s OCSD booking photo; Shin murdered Laguna Beach resident Christopher Smith, his business partner 

The Orange County Sheriff’s Department (OCSD) took over as the lead investigating agency based on evidence that the victim had been murdered in his San Juan Capistrano business, Capt Kravetz explained. 

“We were pleased that the jury found Ed Shin guilty of murder, but disheartened by the fact that he refuses to tell [Christopher’s] family where [he] is buried.” Capt Kravetz said. “His life sentence closes one door for the family, but they are unable to properly bury Chris until Ed Shin discloses where he left the body.”

Shin was arrested on Aug 28, 2011, by OCSD Investigators at Los Angeles International Airport sitting onboard a flight awaiting departure to Canada. 

Senior Deputy District Attorney Matt Murphy of the Homicide Unit prosecuted this case.

Woman suffers serious head injury behind Glenneyre parking structure 

On Thursday, July 25, at 1:27 p.m., an LBPD officer responded to Peppertree Lane, at the 400 block of S Coast Hwy, for a trip and fall report.

According to LBFD engineer paramedic Pat Cary, “Engine 1 responded to find an unknown aged female transient who was unresponsive. She had what appeared to be a laceration and hematoma to her head due to the mechanism of injury. Due to her level of consciousness it was deemed necessary to transfer her to Mission Hospital, Mission Viejo for further evaluation from the trauma team.”

As of press time, no status update was available.

Snake sneaks into resident’s bedroom

On Saturday, July 28, at 12:50 a.m., at the 2000 block of Temple Hills Drive, a resident called to report that a rattlesnake was inside a bedroom closet in her home. 

According to LBPD Civilian Services Administrator Jim Beres, “The resident’s pet dog located the snake in the bedroom. The dog was not injured.”

He continued, “An animal services officer (ASO) was quickly dispatched to handle the matter. While the ASO was enroute to the resident’s home, the snake moved to a bathroom next to the bedroom.”

Beres explained that the snake might have gained access through an open door or screen door.    

After the ASO arrived at the resident’s home, the ASO determined that the snake was a non-venomous gopher snake, not a rattlesnake. 

“When the ASO arrived, the snake had moved outside to the backyard area,” Beres said.

The ASO removed the snake.

“The gopher snake was caught behind a tool shed in the resident’s backyard. The snake was released back into the wilderness area,” Beres said.

Helicopter rescue at 1000 Steps Beach on Sunday

On Sunday, July 28, at approximately 6 p.m., emergency services received a call regarding a young female in duress at 1000 Steps Beach.

According to LBFD engineer paramedic Pat Cary, “Engine 4 ran a call to 1000 Steps for a young adult female patient who had what was described as a possible allergic reaction.”

Treatment was started on scene by Laguna Engine 4 paramedics. OC Fire Department Engine 30 and OC Lifeguards helped coordinate the landing of Mercy Air helicopter. 

“The patient was successfully extricated and transferred to Mission Hospital, Mission Viejo via helicopter for further care,” Cary said.

As of press time, no status update was available.

Editor’s Note: An arrest contains allegations that a suspect has committed a crime. Every suspect is presumed to be innocent until and unless proven guilty in court.

-By Suzie Harrison

Police Files

Home invasion robbery suspects arrested

On Tuesday, July 23, Laguna Beach Police Department (LBPD) detectives and the Fullerton Police Department arrested Hector Fernando Cardoso, 42, of Riverside, in connection with a violent home invasion robbery that occurred in a Laguna Beach home in June 2018.

Cardoso was wanted on a $1 million arrest warrant, after fleeing Newport Beach’s Harbor Court following an appearance there for the case last week.

Cardoso joined his alleged co-conspirator, Robert James Glover, in Orange County Jail. Glover, 51, also of Riverside, was previously arrested by LBPD detectives in September 2018 for his alleged role in the robbery.

Police Files Cardoso Police Files Glover

Photos courtesy of LBPD

Hector Cardoso and Robert Glover

On June 11, 2018, at 11:06 p.m., LBPD received a 911 call from a 71-year-old woman, still partially bound, reporting that she was the victim of a home invasion robbery on Laguna Canyon Road. She informed dispatchers that two men dressed in all black entered her home, brandished handguns, and stated they were looking for drugs and money. The two suspects proceeded to ransack the house and ultimately fled with several stolen firearms, money, and other personal items.

“After a lengthy and extensive investigation, along with the assistance of the Orange County Sheriff’s Department, and Riverside County Gang Task Force, LBPD Detectives arrested Robert James Glover and Hector Fernando Cardoso in connection with the robbery,” said LBPD in a statement released to the media.

If you have any information about this crime, please contact the Laguna Beach Police Department at (949) 497-0701 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).

Woman arrested for alleged vandalism and battery at Pavilions 

On Wednesday, July 24, at 10:32 p.m., LBPD officers responded to a possible petty theft from Pavilions at the 600 block of N Coast Hwy.

According to Sgt Cota, “As officers were responding, LBPD dispatch advised to respond with lights and sirens because a female suspect was now vandalizing property and was attempting to strike the RP with a pole.” 

LBPD officers arrived and immediately located and detained a female suspect, identified as Amber Castillo.

 “Castillo was paranoid, sweating, and hallucinating due to [allegedly] being under the influence of a controlled substance,” Sgt Cota said. 

Amber Kristin Castillo, 41, was arrested for alleged vandalism and battery on a person.

Bail was set for $25,000.

Editor’s Note: An arrest contains allegations that a suspect has committed a crime. Every suspect is presumed to be innocent until and unless proven guilty in court.

-By Suzie Harrison

Animal Files

Sea lion hangs out at beach with local residents, concerned calls pour in but PMMC says she is ok

On Friday, July 19, at 7:28 p.m., a local female California sea lion made waves when she decided to take a little “R & R” at the beach. The pinniped parked it at Bluebird Beach, at the 1500 block of South Coast Highway, amongst dozens of spectators.

According to LBPD Civilian Services Administrator Jim Beres, “We received a report of a sea lion on the sand at Bluebird Beach.”

 Beach Patrol Officers responded to assess the animal and determine if a response from Pacific Marine Mammal Center would be necessary. 

“The sea lion was not sick or injured, it was just resting on the beach between the shoreline and the rocks,” Beres said.

According to police records, the RP was concerned because they thought the sea lion was beached and “people [were] letting their dogs sniff it.”

To help mitigate the situation, Beres said, “A sign was posted to advise the public not to disturb the marine mammal. The sea lion left the beach the following morning and swam back into the ocean.”

Animal Files Sea Lion Sunning

Click on photo for a larger image

Photo by Molly Zurflueh

Local California sea lion hangs out at the beach on Friday night

PMMC public relations and events coordinator Krysta Higuchi said, “We did not respond to this pinniped. We received the call late in the day from animal control. The animal is a yearling that is known for going up to people and has been spotted a few times this month. Right now, the animal has been placed ‘on watch,’ as to monitor her behavior. We don’t want to cause undue stress by capturing her.”

Higuchi said there’s no reason to be alarmed yet, which is why PMMC is continuing to monitor her if she comes back.

“She doesn’t have any alarming physical indications that she needs help, and has been aggressive at approach, which is a good sign. But we will continue to monitor her. Not all rescues are cut and dry and [some] need a little bit of time. If her condition changes or worsens, we will change our game plan,” Higuchi said.

When asked if this type of behavior was common amongst sea lions, Higuchi responded, “It’s hard to say if its common or not, we believe she was just resting and got caught up on a crowded beach.”

 She explained that California sea lions are common to the area, and that they are partially aquatic and known to lay out on beaches. 

“The abnormal thing is they tend not to on crowded beaches,” Higuchi said.

-By Suzie Harrison

Police and Fire Files

Man saved in alleged heroin overdose behind Glenneyre parking structure

On Friday, July 19, at 9:44 p.m., LBPD and LBFD provided medical aid to a man who allegedly overdosed on heroin in the alley behind the Glenneyre parking structure, at the 400 block of S Coast Hwy. 

According to LBFD Captain Crissy Teichmann, the man was approximately 40 years old. “Paramedics arrived to find the patient in the alley behind the restaurants around 9:45 p.m.” 

According to LBPD Spokesperson PIO Sgt Jim Cota, “The subject was face down on arrival. The reporting party located a syringe near [him], which was confiscated and booked for destruction at LBPD.”

According to police records, the patient was “[allegedly] down for 30 minutes, unconscious and not breathing.”

Captain Teichmann said, “The patient was alert upon paramedic arrival but needed continued monitoring. [He] was evaluated and required paramedic monitoring and transport to the closest hospital.”

 “[He] was transported to Mission Hospital, Laguna Beach for medical treatment. No charges are pending,” Sgt Cota said.

Motorcyclist sent to hospital after crash with truck

On Thursday, July 18, at about 4 p.m., two motorcyclists were traveling northbound on South Coast Highway approaching 9th Street, when a pickup parked on the inland side of the highway allegedly attempted to make a U-turn from the shoulder in front of the motorcyclists. 

According to Sgt Cota, “One of the riders was able to stop in time. The other rider struck the side of the truck and went down. The injuries appeared minor, but the rider was transported to Mission Hospital, Mission Viejo for treatment.”

One southbound lane of South Coast Highway was closed for about 30 minutes.

Alleged “man with a gun” suspect arrested in high-risk traffic stop

On Wednesday, July 17, at 1:45 p.m., LBPD officers responded to the area of 1000 Steps Beach for an alleged “man with a gun” suspect from Tustin Police Department. 

According to Sgt Cota, “The male subject was reported to be involved in a road rage incident in the city of Tustin where the suspect [allegedy] pointed a gun at the victim.”

Tustin Police Department was able to track the suspect via his cell phone. Officers arrived in the area and located the suspect’s vehicle but it was reportedly unoccupied. 

Tustin Police Department detectives responded to the area to conduct surveillance. 

“At 4:10 p.m., the suspect returned to his vehicle and began driving northbound on Coast Highway. Tustin Police Detectives requested assistance conducting a high-risk traffic stop. LBPD officers arrived on scene and conducted a high-risk vehicle stop at South Coast Highway and Agate Street. The suspect was taken into custody without incident. Tustin Police transported the suspect back to Tustin PD for questioning,” Sgt Cota said.

Skimming device found at local hotel ATM

On Saturday, July 20, at 9:03 a.m., an LBPD officer responded to Surf and Sand Resort, at 1555 S Coast Hwy. 

According to Sgt Cota, “A card skimming device was found by the Surf and Sand security manager. The device was found attached to the ATM located next to the gift shop.”

The device was allegedly placed on the ATM between noon on Friday, July 19 and 8:35 a.m. on Saturday, July 20. 

“No suspects were seen and no there are no surveillance cameras located by the ATM,” Sgt Cota said.

Mercy Air rescues woman at 1000 Steps Beach 

On Friday, July 19, at 5:08 p.m., Emergency Services responded to a report of an injured woman at 1000 Steps Beach, at the 31900 block of S Coast Hwy.

According to Sgt Cota, “Mercy Air landed for a 32-year-old female with a back injury walking down the stairs to 1000 Steps Beach.”

Captain Teichmann elaborated on the rescue.

 “The call was for a 32-year-old female with severe back pain after walking down the steps. She was treated by Laguna paramedics. She was unable to walk up so a medical helicopter was requested to continue her treatment and transport her to the hospital,” Capt Teichmann said.

She was taken to Mission Hospital in Mission Viejo.

According to police records, the woman was in front of the stairs in a tent and couldn’t get up, when the emergency call was made.

Scam alert: telephone scam requests money to post bail for nonexistent DUI

On Saturday, July 20, at 11:20 a.m., an LBPD officer responded to a residence on the 300 block of Heather Place for the report a telephone scam. 

According to Sgt Cota, “The caller stated that the RP’s grandson was arrested for DUI and needed to post bail. The caller was requesting money for the bail amount. No money was given. The RP wanted the police department to know and document the call for service.”

Editor’s Note: An arrest contains allegations that a suspect has committed a crime. Every suspect is presumed to be innocent until and unless proven guilty in court.

-By Suzie Harrison

Police Files

Bike stop leads to arrest for alleged meth sales, 25 grams of meth recovered

On Monday, July 15, at 3:12 p.m., an LBPD officer conducted a bike stop that led to the discovery of a hefty amount of meth.

Police Files David CrossnoAccording to LBPD Spokesperson PIO Sgt Jim Cota, “During the stop, Crossno was extremely sweaty, fidgety, and kept adjusting the rear of his shorts as if he was attempting to conceal something. A search of his person revealed approximately 25 grams of methamphetamine between his buttocks. The officer also located a couple of small clear baggies which led him to believe Crossno was selling methamphetamine.” 

According to, 25 grams of meth has an estimated street value of $1,500 to $2,000.

David Mark Crossno, 53, was arrested for alleged possession and sales of a controlled substance and on a probation violation.

No bail was set.

Not a piece of cake, couple makes in-person complaint about a bad restaurant experience to LBPD

On Tuesday, July 16, at 9:32 p.m., an LBPD officer met with a couple at the front counter of the PD that had a complaint about their experience at a local Laguna Beach restaurant. They reported that along with their meal, they purchased an expensive birthday cake for their party. 

According to Sgt Cota, “After the meal, the staff packed up the leftovers to take home. When the couple arrived home, they discovered that the staff had only packed nine of the ten leftover pieces of cake. When the couple called the restaurant the next day to complain about the missing piece of cake, they found the manager to not be very sympathetic.”

Cota said, “The officer explained the limitations of law enforcement’s ability to assist them in such a frustration and provided them with alternative methods of following up with the restaurant.”

300 attend full moon drumming at Aliso Beach on Tuesday, LBPD cites three on alleged drunk in public violations

On Tuesday, July 16, the Aliso Beach Drum Circle drew an estimated 300 visitors. There were two LBPD beach patrol officers and two OC Parks rangers monitoring the drum circle.

“LBPD officers, beach patrol officers, and cadets patrolled the event with OC Parks rangers. Three citations were issued for alcohol violations,” Sgt Cota said.

Editor’s Note: An arrest contains allegations that a suspect has committed a crime. Every suspect is presumed to be innocent until and unless proven guilty in court.

-By Suzie Harrison

Police Files

Helicopter assists in stolen car arrest ending in Taco Bell parking lot

On Thursday, July 11, at 6:45 p.m., LBPD officers responded to the area of Ledroit Street and North Coast Highway regarding a vehicle possibly involved in a robbery in Santa Ana with two named suspects. 

According to LBPD Spokesperson PIO Sgt Jim Cota, “The black Dodge Charger was used in an armed robbery in Santa Ana on Saturday, June 22, and frequents Laguna Beach…A helicopter was requested and responded to assist in our area search of the vehicle. Officers were unable to locate the Dodge Charger.”

Sgt Cota said, “While looking for the robbery vehicle, officers were notified of a stolen vehicle entering Laguna Beach. The Chevy Prism had been stolen out of Santa Ana on Monday, July 8. An officer located the stolen vehicle at Legion Street and South Coast Highway, occupied by four passengers”. 

Additional LBPD officers arrived on scene and assisted. A high-risk vehicle stop was conducted in the Taco Bell parking lot. 

According to Sgt Cota, “The driver, Manuel Garcia, knew the vehicle was stolen but bought it from a friend for $300.”

Manuel Arreola Garcia, 28, was arrested for alleged possession of a stolen vehicle, taking a vehicle without owner consent, possession of burglary tools, and driving with a suspended driver’s license. 

The rear left male passenger, Juan Jesus Belman, 19, had a no bail warrant for his arrest regarding weapons violations.

The two female passengers were juveniles and later released to parents.

“Belman and Garcia were booked at LBPD and later transported to Orange County Jail,” Sgt Cota said.

Bail was set at $21,500 for Garcia and no bail was set for Belman.

$2,000 in wet clothes stolen from laundromat 

On Friday, July 12, at 9:41 p.m., at Legion Laundromat, at the 300 block of Legion Street, a victim noticed some of her laundry had gone missing.

According to Sgt Cota, “The victim placed her clothes in four separate washers and then went outside to her vehicle where she waited. During that time, a 20-30-minute period, an unknown person(s) took her designer clothes, including pants, jackets, and dress shirts, but left her socks and underwear.”

 The approximate loss is allegedly between $2,000 to $3,000.

Man arrested after allegedly kicking officer in the shin

On Saturday, July 13, at 11:58 p.m., downtown foot patrol officers contacted Sun City resident Steven Jackson, who had run across traffic from Skyloft to Laguna Avenue and El Paseo Street. 

According to Sgt Cota, “Jackson was uncooperative and aggressive with officers so he was detained in handcuffs during their investigation. Jackson continued to be upset and aggressive towards officers. Jackson charged an officer and kicked him in the shin.” 

Steven Michael Jackson, 41, was placed under arrest for alleged battery on a peace officer, resisting an executive officer, and resisting arrest. 

Sgt Cota said, “He was later transported to Orange County Jail. While in a cell at LBPD, Jackson flooded the cell and pushed water into the hallway.” 

Bail was set at $25,000. 

Editor’s Note: An arrest contains allegations that a suspect has committed a crime. Every suspect is presumed to be innocent until and unless proven guilty in court.

-By Suzie Harrison

Police Files

Suspect re-arrested nearly two years after alleged citywide crime spree, bail set at $150,000

On Monday, July 8, at 9:02 a.m., Reed Swingley was arrested on a warrant related to an alleged crime spree that occurred in the summer of 2017. 

According to LBPD Spokesperson PIO Sgt Jim Cota, “Detectives located him in Riverside where he was re-arrested without incident.” 

 Sgt Cota said, “During the summer of 2017, Reed Swingley [allegedly] went on a crime spree in the City of Laguna Beach generating multiple cases within a few days. Victims included Mozambique restaurant, Horst Architects, as well as numerous Laguna Beach residents and visitors.”

The crimes Swingley allegedly committed included commercial, residential, and vehicle burglaries, as well as petty and grand thefts. Items stolen included a safe, a large amount of cash, an antique saxophone, and a bronze statue.

According to Sgt. Cota, a review of surveillance video from one of the businesses, as well as the residence, identified a person of interest and a suspect vehicle. 

 “Thanks to video surveillance and diligent police work by patrol officers, detectives, and dispatchers, Swingley was identified. Swingley ultimately was arrested in the City of Laguna Beach and much of the stolen property was recovered from Swingley’s vehicle during the arrest,” Sgt Cota said of the 2017 arrest.

Before Swingley was arrested on Monday he had previously been released.

“Based on the amount of victims and follow-up required, the OCDA’s office elected to release Swingley pending further investigation. Following an extensive investigation, an arrest warrant [for] $150,000 was eventually obtained for Swingley’s arrest,” Sgt Cota said.

Reed Myron Swingley, 56, was arrested on a warrant. Bail was set at $150,000.

Editor’s Note: An arrest contains allegations that a suspect has committed a crime. Every suspect is presumed to be innocent until and unless proven guilty in court.

Several boxes of jewelry stolen while resident is out of town

On Tuesday, July 9, at 1:37 p.m., LBPD officers were dispatched to a residence in the 1600 block of Tahiti Avenue for a reported burglary. The officers arrived and found unknown suspects(s) had smashed a bathroom window and entered the house. It appears the crime was focused on the master bedroom and one wardrobe and dresser. 

According to Sgt Cota, the victim was on vacation at the time, but was contacted by the officers and according to her verbal confirmation, it looks as though several boxes of jewelry of substantial value was taken. 

CSI was conducted and a report was taken. Detectives responded and will assume the investigation going forward. 

-By Suzie Harrison

Police Files

Duo arrested for alleged DUIs after allegedly switching seats following hit-and-run accident

On Saturday, July 6, at 8:01 p.m., LBPD officers responded to Anita Street and South Coast Highway in reference to an alleged hit-and-run non-injury traffic collision.

According to LBPD Spokesperson PIO Sgt Jim Cota, “The witness observed the female and male switch seats as the suspect vehicle had fled the scene prior to officers’ arrival.” 

A vehicle description was provided by the RP and an officer located the vehicle and initiated a vehicle enforcement stop at Legion Street and South Coast Highway. 

Sgt Cota said, “The three occupants were all intoxicated and admitted to the minor traffic collision. The driver was arrested for DUI. The witness who observed the traffic collision responded to the scene and identified the female passenger and the driver during the original collision. She was also arrested for DUI and hit and run.”

Sgt Cota explained that the suspects were both driving at separate times. “The female was driving during the accident, then they switched and were stopped with the male driving.”

The female, a 27-year-old from Downey, was arrested for alleged DUI and for the hit and run. Bail was set at $3,000.

The male, a 30-year-old from Los Angeles, was arrested for an alleged DUI. Bail was set at $2,500.

Editor’s Note: An arrest contains allegations that a suspect has committed a crime. Every suspect is presumed to be innocent until and unless proven guilty in court.

Back-to-back earthquakes rock Laguna and the Southland, the biggest in SoCal in decades

Laguna Beach along with the rest of the Southland felt the impact of two heavy-hitting earthquakes, occurring within 36 hours of each other. Fireworks were felt early on Thursday, July 4, at 10:33 a.m., with a 6.4 magnitude earthquake in the Barstow area followed by an even greater 7.1 magnitude earthquake recorded nearby in the Ridgecrest area on Friday, July 5, at 8:19 p.m. According to reports, Friday’s rolling shakes were felt north to San Francisco and east to Las Vegas, as well as in Mexico to the south.

Luckily, no fatalities were reported, and despite the widespread damage, the quakes are not being called catastrophic. 

According to Sgt Cota, “Laguna Beach experienced significant shaking but no injuries or property damage was reported. Mission Hospital in Laguna Beach was checked to make sure they did not sustain any damage. Officers immediately began checking their assigned beats for poles, wires, or trees down. Also, the gas stations were checked for gas leaks, none reported.”

The two tremblers were the strongest earthquakes to hit the Southern California area in 20 years.

Police Files City Emergency Kit backpack

Click on photo for a larger image 

Submitted photo

Laguna-specific emergency backpacks are available, be prepared

With all this new seismic activity, being prepared for emergencies has never been more important. To help in emergencies, a Laguna Beach-specific Emergency Kit Backpack has been created and is available for purchase. The kit includes an AM/FM hand crank radio with flashlight and cell phone charger, a 4-in-1 gas and water utility shut off tool, glow sticks, bio-hazard bags, nitrile gloves, a N95 mask, 54-piece first aid kit, duct tape, emergency poncho, solar blanket, and personal hygiene kit. 

The kit also contains emergency plan templates and disaster-specific information. Each red backpack features an official City of Laguna Beach seal.

Laguna Beach specific Emergency Kit Backpack can be purchased for $50 on the City’s website via or in person at the Community and Susi Q Center, 380 Third Street, during normal business hours.

During an earthquake, Earthquake County Alliance advises to “Drop, Cover, and Hold. According to their website ( 

--DROP where you are, onto your hands and knees. This position protects you from being knocked down and also allows you to stay low and crawl to shelter if nearby.

--COVER your head and neck with one arm and hand. If a sturdy table or desk is nearby, crawl underneath it for shelter. If no shelter is nearby, crawl next to an interior wall (away from windows). Stay on your knees; bend over to protect vital organs.

--HOLD ON until shaking stops. Under shelter: hold on to it with one hand; be ready to move with your shelter if it shifts. No shelter: hold on to your head and neck with both arms and hands.

-By Suzie Harrison

Shaena Stabler is the Owner, Publisher & Editor.

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Alexis Amaradio, Barbara Diamond, Dennis McTighe, Diane Armitage, Marrie Stone, Maggi Henrikson, Samantha Washer, and Suzie Harrison are our writers and/or columnists. Scott Brashier is our photographer.

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