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Assault & Battery

Strange Cases from LAPD: Fake Guns, Real Guns and Terrorist Groping

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by Kate Lý Johnston

LOS ANGELES (Crosstown LA) — At Crosstown, we examine publicly available crime report data from multiple Los Angeles County law enforcement agencies. We have a robot on the team called the Detective that scans the LAPD data for anomalies. LAPD officers tag most crime reports in their system with MO codes, for “modus operandi,” Latin for operating method or style. The MO codes are shorthand for describing what happened in a crime incident.

Here are a couple recent examples of what the Detective has found, aggregated by the robot’s human assistant, Kate Lý Johnston.

Threats with fake guns are still illegal

Keep your BB guns at home, because imitation firearms are illegal to display publicly in California.

At 3 p.m. on Sept. 11, three people were arrested at the intersection of Santa Monica Blvd. and Wilson Pl. in Hollywood for possessing replica firearms.

The suspects used their fake guns to threaten to kill three Hispanic teenagers, according to publicly available LAPD data. One of the suspects was also experiencing homelessness.

Crime Code 931, “Replica Firearms (Sale, Display, Manufacture, or Distribute),” has been reported only three other times in 2019, and 29 times in total since 2010. In six of these cases, the weapon was described as a “toy gun,” which is classified differently from a BB gun or air pistol.

Replica guns made national news on Nov. 22, 2014 when 12-year-old Tamir Rice was shot and killed by a police officer while playing with an airsoft replica gun at a Cleveland, Ohio playground.

More guns this week, this time for real

At 6 p.m. on Sept. 10, a 21-year-old Hispanic male was murdered by a suspect defined by the LAPD as “Suspect is/was other religious confidant” what the LAPD calls on the 500 block of San Pascual Ave. in Highland Park.

According to publicly available LAPD data, the so-called religious confidant, who was apparently mentally challenged or disturbed, stabbed with a knife and shot the victim with a handgun. The data indicate that the suspect and victim knew each other, meaning the victim could have been murdered by his own confidant.

Terrorist groups and touching genitalia

At 2:20 a.m. on Sept. 15, an 18-year-old Hispanic female was groped on a train at the Wilshire / Western Station in Koreatown. According to publicly available LAPD data, the suspect touched the victim’s genitalia over her clothing.

However, the crime was also tagged with MO code 0905, “Terrorist Group.”

The LAPD Records and Identification Division was unable to verify by Crosstown’s deadline if the code was used in error or if the incident was, indeed, linked to a “Terrorist Group.”

Crosstown covers the neighborhoods of Los Angeles in a different way — through data — to help people make their neighborhoods and the city safer, healthier, and more connected.

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Assault & Battery

Santa Monica Architect Stabbed in Expo Line Altercation

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Photo: Sam Catanzaro.

By Toi Creel

West Los Angeles (SM Mirror) — Four minors have been taken into custody after a Santa Monica man was stabbed in a violent confrontation on the Expo Line in West Los Angeles.

The incident occurred on the Metro E (Expo) Line Tuesday night at around 8:30 PM.

Former Santa Monica Planning Commission Chair Gwynne Pugh says he was riding the E line back to Santa Monica when two teenage couples, two men and two women, got on the train with a shopping cart filled with alcohol.

Witnesses say the teens were loud, appeared to be intoxicated, and when a […]

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Assault & Battery

Female Motorist Charged With Assaulting People at Taco Truck

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LOS ANGELES — A 25-year-old woman accused of assaulting people at a taco truck with her vehicle last August has been charged, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office has announced.

Amber Rose Darbinyan of Los Angeles faces three felony counts of assault with a deadly weapon, a car, one felony count each of hit-and-run driving resulting in injury to another person and vandalism over $400 damage, as well as three misdemeanor counts of battery.

Darbinyan pleaded not guilty today. The defendant is scheduled to return to court on March 27 for a preliminary hearing setting in Department 37 of the Foltz Criminal Justice Center.

On Aug. 25, 2019, Darbinyan and other patrons were parked in front of a taco truck in Hollywood when she allegedly rammed her vehicle against a car that was blocking her path, prosecutors said.

If convicted as charged, the defendant faces a possible maximum sentence of eight years and four months in state prison.

The case remains under investigation by the Los Angeles Police Department, Hollywood Station.

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Assault & Battery

Brother of Bezos’ Girlfriend is Allegedly Attacked in WeHo

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Brother of Jeff Bezos girlfriend attacked by man screaming ‘f**k you’ just days after filing lawsuit against Amazon boss

WEST HOLLYWOOD (The Sun) — THE BROTHER of Jeff Bezos’ girlfriend was attacked in the street by a man who threatened to kill him and whacked him with a bike – just days after filing a defamation lawsuit against the Amazon chief.

Michael Sanchez, 54, was approached by a man on a bike screaming: “F**k you” and “Don’t ignore me” before the suspect picked up the bike and struck him with it, according to the Los Angeles Sheriff’s report, obtained by The Sun. Michael Sanchez filed a police report about the alleged attack The suspect also allegedly screamed “I’m going to kill you” according to onlookers to the incident, which took place in West Hollywood on February 5.

The alleged attack happened just days after Sanchez […]

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 Police report from the Los Angeles Sheriff's department obtained by The Sun
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