SANTA MONICA CRIME WATCH
May 5, 2014
Couple Assaulted in Local Hotel
Santa Monica Police say they were called to the Ocean Luxury Lofts and Suites at 107 Broadway, regarding an assault in progress. It happened on May 6 at about 3:45 in the morning. They say they found and detained the suspect, Ricardo Mathews of San Bernardino, on the 2nd Floor while other officers contacted two victims on the 3rd Floor.
Lawmen report that Mathews broke into a storage room in the hotel and stole a basket with spare keys for each of the hotel rooms, then entered a room on the second floor and left some property in it. Authorities say the investigation revealed that at approximately 2:30 in the morning, Matthews used one of the spare keys to enter a room where the victim and his girlfriend were sleeping. They say when confronted by the couple, Mathews claimed he was part of the housekeeping staff and then left the room. Lawmen report the victims could hear Mathews trying other doors on the same floor after he left their room, so they called the hotel manager and asked him to contact the police.
Authorities say a short time later, at about 3:15 am, the victims heard their room door being unlocked again. They say the man went to the door to confront Mathews again and then followed him down the hallway when he walked away, but then Mathews turned around and punched him in the face knocking him out. Officers say Mathews then stomped on the victim at least four times. They say when the victim's girlfriend saw this, she screamed at the Mathews to stop said she was calling the police after which he approached her and knocked the phone out of her hand. Lawmen say after a brief struggle, Mathews grabbed the phone away from the woman and fled, but was detained by the responding officers. Officers report Mathews was booked at the Santa Monica Jail for residential burglary, aggravated assault, robbery, preventing a witness/victim from calling 911, and a probation violation. He was held under a $50,000 bail.
Alleged Gang Graffiti Lands Man Behind Bars
Santa Monica police say a customer at the Rite Aid pharmacy at 2414 Pico Blvd told a store employee there was a man outside the store writing graffiti on the north wall. It happened on May 3 around 10:30 at night. Lawmen report when the employee went out to look, she saw the suspect, Ivan Jauregui of Los Angeles, using black spray paint to write 6-foot tall letters across the entire 150-foot wall. They say she also saw a white Toyota sedan parked along the curb next to where the suspect was. Officers report she told Jauregui to stop, but he ignored her, so she went back inside the store to call the police.
Lawmen report after talking to police she went back outside and saw the Toyota make a U-turn across the traffic lanes and then stopping at the northeast corner Cloverfield Blvd and Pico Blvd, when Jauregui got out of the car and spray painted more graffiti on the south wall of a business there and when he was done he got back into the car and the driver sped away. They say when Santa Monica Police officers arrived at the scene they began looking for the Toyota and found it on Frank St and Virginia Ave where they detained Jauregui, who had black paint on his clothing and on one of his hands. Lawmen report officers also found cans of spray paint inside the car and similar graffiti in the neighborhood.
They say after the employee identified the suspect as the man she saw spray painting the walls, Officers took Jauregui into custody and booked him in the Santa Monica Jail for felony vandalism. Authorities say since the graffiti was gang related, Jauregui was also charged with a gang enhancement. He was given a $40,000 bail.
City Employee Helps to Catch Bicycle Thief
Santa Monica police say a City of Santa Monica employee was sitting in a city car and parked at the 1200 block of 2nd St, when he saw the suspect, Richard Powell of Los Angeles, first walk past him and then, a short time later, walk by in the opposite direction, with a white bicycle with flat tires while holding a cable lock that appeared to have been cut. This happened on May 5 around noon.
They say the employee became suspicious, so he followed Powell at a distance and called the police. Officers say after filling the tires with air at a nearby gas station, Powell rode to the 1900 block of Broadway and dropped the white bike, then cut the lock off another bike and rode away on that one. They say the employee continued to follow Powell, until a Santa Monica Police Department Community Service Officer spotted him as well and radioed in his location. Officers say Powell was detained a short time later at Wilshire Blvd and Bundy. Lawmen report Powell claimed he just bought the bike from someone for 40 dollars. They say while being detained the owner of the second bike that had been stolen happened to be driving by and recognized his bicycle. Authorities report Powell was taken into custody and later booked at the Santa Monica Jail for petty theft with a prior conviction and also had an outstanding warrant for his arrest for a domestic violence incident in Hawthorne. His bail was set at Bail $120,000.