SANTA MONICA CRIME WATCH
August 4, 2014
Theft of Bicycle Basket
Santa Monica police on 8/1/14 at approximately 12:45 AM officers responded to a report of a theft in progress at Parking Structure #8, located at 1555 2nd Street. They say upon arrival officers met with the reporting party who told them he was near the entrance of the parking structure when he saw two suspects, Miguel Vargas-Velasquez, 25, from Venice and Diana Roque, 25, from Moreno Vallley, standing next to several parked bicycles that were locked at the bike rack.
Authorities say The Vargas-Velasquez appeared to be removing a basket from one of the parked bikes while Roque stood nearby as a lookout. Lawmen report the witness watched as Vargas-Velas removed the basket from the front of one of the parked bikes and relayed the information (including the suspect’s descriptions) to police dispatchers. They say officers arrived at the structure and detained both suspects as they started riding their own bicycles away from the area. Police say Vargas-Velas admitted to stealing the basket because he had back pain and wanted to use it to carry his backpack while Roque denied any involvement in the theft. Police say both suspects, Miguel Vargas-Velasquez and Diana Roque were booked for petty theft and bail for both was set at $1,000 each.
Battery in a Dating Relationship
Santa Monica Police say on 8/2/14 around 1:50 AM officers responded to the 400 block of California to investigate a report of a man possibly choking a woman and preventing her from getting into a car. They say when officers arrived they found both subjects standing in the carport area behind an apartment building. Authorities report the woman involved was sitting in the driver’s seat of her vehicle and crying uncontrollably. Officers learned that both subjects have been in a dating relationship and had been arguing, while in their apartment, about their relationship after the woman came home late from a night out at 3rd Street Promenade. Lawmen report the argument became heated when the woman threw wine from a glass toward the suspect, Dennis Degan, 65, of Los Angeles.
They say that is when Degan became angry, grabbed the woman around her neck with both hands and pushed her back into a chair. They say Degan told the woman to clean up her mess but the she was able to break free of his grasp and left the apartment. Officers say Degan followed her to her car and tried to prevent her from leaving when the victim started yelling for someone to call the police. Officers arrived shortly after and separated the two parties. They say Degan admitted to grabbing the victim around the neck stating he was trying to cover her mouth because she was yelling and their windows were wide open. Officers say they did not observe any injuries on the victim and the suspect Degan was booked for battery on a spouse/dating relationship. Degan’s bail was set at $20,000.
Expired Plates and Belligerence Lead to
Police say on 8/3/14 at 2:15 PM a Traffic Enforcement Officer (on a motorcycle) from SMPD observed a man riding a motorcycle north on the California Decline from Ocean. They say the motorcycle did not have any license plates or other form of registration displayed and when the officer attempted to stop the rider of the motorcycle using his emergency lights and sirens the rider refused to stop at first. They say he eventually stopped at the base of the California Decline (at Pacific Coast Highway) and the motorcycle officer stopped his motorcycle in front of the suspect’s, reached over and turned off the suspect’s ignition. Officers say the suspect, Douglas Herich, 57, of Placentia, told the officer that he was not a citizen of the United States and did not have any form of identification.
Lawmen report Herich told the officer that he did not have to register his motorcycle, display a license plate and registration nor did he have to comply with the officer’s request. They say Herich got off his motorcycle and refused to comply with the officer’s orders and removed his helmet and assumed a fighting stance. Lawmen report the officer requested assistance and addition officers arrived on scene and took the Herich into custody without incident. They say the investigation revealed that Herich had a suspended California Driver’s License and the registration on his motorcycle expired in 2008. Authorities say Herich was booked for interfering/obstructing a police investigation, driving on a suspended license, expired registration, no license plate displayed on his vehicle and no proof of insurance and his bail was set at $10,000.