The downside to living in Old Town Tustin, is our proximity to the other side of the freeway. In fact, Main Street in OTT is the main thoroughfare for Tustin PD when they are running code 3 to the west side of town. Early morning, especially before my first cup of coffee, is a disconcerting time to hear lights and siren from multiple responding police cars. What I really hate is the fact that all police communications in Orange County are digitally encrypted so one cannot even ascertain what is happening at the time. And, Tustin PD’s social media director rarely puts out real-time info on crimes in progress. That means, I usually have to wait the press release from the Public Information Officer.
My peace and quiet were disturbed on last Wednesday when several police units screamed down the street toward Lyon Avenue. Police were responding to the break-in of a home on McFadden Avenue. The victim called police in response to her boyfriend breaking into her residence. His apparent intention was to abduct the couple’s child. The suspect, later identified as Rodrigo Delgadillo Bustos, took the infant child and fled the scene. An APB was issued by Tustin PD and the suspect’s vehicle was later located on West McFadden in Santa Ana by Santa Ana Police. Together with OCSD Air Support, the suspect and child were located and the suspect arrested.
The 22 year old suspect, was subsequently booked into Orange County Jail by Tustin Detectives for Kidnapping, Robbery and Burglary. The child was returned to her mother unharmed.
So, I wonder how many people will show up at a city council meeting to commend the police for their quick reaction in saving this child’s life?
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact:
Lt. Robert Wright
CRIME WARNING: Sexual Battery Crime Series
The Tustin Police Department has received five reports of sexual battery since April 19, 2014. In each incident the suspect approached the female victims and grabbed a private area of the victim. In most cases the suspect has grabbed the buttocks; however the suspect has grabbed the vaginal area on one victim and lifted the dress of another victim. The suspect has also tried to kiss one of the victims. After committing the act the suspect flees the area on foot.
In four of the incidents the suspect has targeted adult females, however in one case the victim was a juvenile.
The incidents have occurred at several different locations in the City, on various days and various times. In most cases the victims have been walking/jogging in public areas, in two cases the victims were approached while standing at mailboxes and different locations.
The suspect is described as a Male, age range from early 20s – 30 years old, 5’9”-6’1”, medium build, Hispanic or Middle Eastern, dark hair, some cases describe the suspect has having facial hair.
The Tustin Police Department is seeking help from the public in identifying the suspect as well as identifying any additional victims.
Anyone with information is requested to contact Detective Pam Hardacre at 714-573-3248
On Wednesday, January 15, 2014, at about 12:00 pm, a man approached a 7 year old girl from the rear and touched her with his exposed penis. The attack took place inside the Bodga Ranch Market located at 1112 Walnut Avenue, Tustin. The suspect fled before witnesses could detain him.
He is described as Asian, 30-40 years old, 150 pounds with black hair and mustache. AHe was last seen wearing black shirt, dark shorts with white socks and dark shoes.
Tustin Police are looking for anyone may be able to identify the suspect as well as other victims. Anyone with information is urged to call Detective Nguyen at 714-573-3253.
With all the recent stories of Federal investigations and Grand Jury reports, it would seem our little corner of the state is a hotbed of criminal activity. And, judging from recent press releases and news stories, it looks like we aren’t far from it. Since neither the city council nor the planning commission will be meeting in the next few weeks, we thought we’d do our civic duty and inform you of some of the more mundane crime in Our Town Tustin.
Sex and the City
The Tustin Police Department sent out a press release asking for the public’s help in a series of Sexual Battery Incidents that have recently plagued the city. It seems a sexual predator has been combing our streets looking for unsuspecting womens’ tushes to ply his trade on.
From the press release:
In all six incidents, the suspect approached either a lone female or females in tandem from behind. The suspect either groped the victim’s buttocks or pulled the victim’s pants down, in concert with the groping. In each case, the suspect immediately fled after the initial contact and in some cases, apologized as he ran away.
All six incidents have occurred mid-week in the morning or late evening hours. Locations of the incidents have varied from apartment complexes to public sidewalks in the city.
The suspect has been described a[s] a male white or light skinned Hispanic, 18 – 20 years old, with a thin build. The suspect may also have a tattoo of an unconfirmed nature on one of his arms. In one incident, a vehicle was associated to the suspect and it is described only as an older “boxy” black sedan.
The Megan’s Law database lists 32 sex offenders in the city of Tustin. Most of those are in compliance with the law regarding registration and required contact with the police department. Three of them have failed to register or re-register as required and several more show they may have moved or their whereabouts are unknown at this time. Kind of scary when you think about it.
As a career law enforcement officer who works with mentally ill sex offenders, I can tell you these folks are unpredictable at best. The best defense is to walk with others although, as has been seen in this situation, that is not always enough protection in itself. And, while this offender appears to be apologetic, don’t be fooled into thinking he won’t put up a vicious fight if he feels cornered. So, if your paths cross, don’t take matters into your own hands.
The best way to fight someone like this is to carry your cellphone at all times when you are out and make sure it is charged. If accosted, yell and scream as loud as possible while running the other way. If you can keep your wits about you, try to get a good look at the suspect to give to Tustin PD investigators. The most important thing is your safety, however. Don’t take chances.
Taking Advantage In Other Ways
Fortunately, not much of our crime is as heinous as sexual predators. On the other end of the criminal spectrum, a Tustin construction contractor plead guilty to evading taxes and theft of a workers wages, in a case file by the California Department of Industrial Relations in January, 2012.
Reza Mohammedi, owner of Irvine based Southland Construction was sentenced to two years in state prison for his crimes. Mohammedi preyed on undocumented workers he hired to work on public construction projects in several Orange County Cities. Although he was cutting paychecks for workers, paying them up to $53 dollars an hour, he would then force the employees to return most of the money to him, allowing them to keep only $150 a day.
Mohammedi, who lives in Tustin but apparently doesn’t do business with the city, used threats of deportation and firings if the workers did not return the money to him. When the Labor Commission began its investigation, Mohammedi coached his workers on what to tell them. Apparently, his threats were not enough as several of his employees filed complaints.
The Orange County DA made an offer of 15 felony counts of tax evasion, 7 felony counts of taking and receiving a portion of a workers wage on public projects, 6 counts of recording false and forged instruments, and 3 felony counts of filing false tax returns. He also had a prior strike conviction for making Criminal Threats in 199.
And, for this, he received only 2 years in prison.
Hopefully, this will deter other business owners from making the same assumptions when it comes to hiring undocumented workers. In this state, their undocumented status is irrelevant (as it should be) when it comes to paying fair wages and keeping standard working conditions.
Well, I am sure there is plenty more crime out there. Thanks to our professional, accredited police department, we can still walk our streets in safety. Makes one wonder who Jeff Parker will tag for our new chief when Scott Jordan retires next month. I’m sure he has someone in mind that he can try out his 21st Century Hiring Process on.