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Costa Mesa man to face trial in the kidnapping and murder of a Santa Ana man


Gianni Anthony Van

Gianni Anthony Van

ORANGE COUNTY DISTRICT ATTORNEY PRESS RELEASE

Cases: 13ZF0162/12CF3070

Date: April 14, 2015

DEFENDANT TO FACE TRIAL FOR 1995 COLD CASE KIDNAPPING AND STABBING-MURDER OF MAN

*One co-defendant awaits jury trial in this case and two other co-defendants await sentencing in this case

SANTA ANA – A man will face trial tomorrow for the 1995 cold case kidnapping and stabbing-murder of another man. Gianni Anthony Van, 45, Costa Mesa, is charged with one felony count of special circumstances murder during the commission of a kidnapping. Van faces a maximum sentence of life in state prison without the possibility of parole. Opening statements are scheduled to begin tomorrow at 9:30 a.m. in Department C-41, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana.

Co-defendant Diane Tran, 46, Costa Mesa, pleaded guilty on Jan. 24, 2014, to one felony count of voluntary manslaughter with a sentencing enhancement for being armed with a firearm during the commission of a felony. She faces a maximum sentence of four years at her sentencing on June 12, 2015, at 9:00 a.m. in Department C-41. Read more…

 
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Man who shot and killed sister’s boyfriend caught in Mexico, facing felony charges


Adan Rodriguez Leon

Adan Rodriguez Leon

 

ORANGE COUNTY DISTRICT ATTORNEY PRESS RELEASE

Case # 15CF0763

April 13, 2015

MAN TO BE ARRAIGNED FOR SHOOTING-MURDER OF SISTER’S BOYFRIEND

*Defendant is accused of fleeing to Mexico after the murder

SANTA ANA – A man is scheduled to be arraigned tomorrow for the shooting-murder of his sister’s boyfriend. Adan Rodriguez Leon, 32, Santa Ana, is charged with one felony count of murder and a sentencing enhancement for personal discharge of a firearm causing death. He is also charged with sentencing enhancements for previously being convicted of possession of a loaded firearm by an active participant in a criminal street gang in 2008 and sale or transportation of a controlled substance in 2010. If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of 52 years to life in state prison. The People will be requesting he be held on $5 million bail at his arraignment tomorrow in Department CJ-1, Central Jail, Santa Ana.

At approximately 2:30 p.m. on April 8, 2015, Leon is accused of going to his sister’s home in Santa Ana. The defendant is accused of contacting his sister’s boyfriend, 39-year-old Paul Guzman, outside the home. Leon is accused of pulling out a loaded firearm and shooting the victim multiple times. The defendant is accused of fleeing the scene after the shooting. Read more…

 
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Find out how the City is spending our money at upcoming community budget hearings

April 16, 2015
6:00 pmto7:00 pm
April 23, 2015
7:00 pmto8:00 pm
April 28, 2015
6:15 pmto7:15 pm

David Cavazos

City of Santa Ana, Downtown Orange County

Community: Community Budget Hearings

The community is invited to participate in the upcoming Community Budget Hearings. The hearings will provide an overview of the upcoming 2015-16 Budget, Strategic Plan update and the Capital Improvement Program. This will be an opportunity for the community to provide input and priorities in the budget process.

Please join us at one of the following: Read more…

 
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The OCDA is investigating where O.C. Supervisor Andrew Do resides


Andrew Do Picture

It did not take long for Orange County Supervisor Andrew Do to land in hot water.  In a March 24 email, Assistant District Attorney Ebrahim Baytieh, who heads the DA’s Court and Special Prosecutions Unit, confirmed that investigations based on allegations that Do has skirted residency laws are “still proceeding,” according to the Voice of OC.

Do does not have to reveal his voter registration address, as a former employee of the O.C. District Attorney’s office.  However now that he is an elected Supervisor he does have to file conflict of interest disclosures, wherein he notes that he resides at on Irene Way in Westminster. Read more…

 
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Suspected Santa Ana DUI driver crashed with his wife and kids on board this morning


DUI Accident in Santa Ana

A Santa Ana family had a very bad day today as a man suspected of a DUI crashed his SUV into a tree at 3:50 am, with his wife and two kids inside the vehicle, according to the O.C. Register.

Leonardo Morales, 23, apparently failed to turn with the curve of the road near the 17th Street off-ramp on the 55 Freeway, when he crashed his 2001 Chevrolet Tahoe into a tree, according to the California Highway Patrol.

The SUV caught fire after the accident and the CHP officers who arrived on scene, T. Montoya and D. Hansen, found the driver standing Morales outside the car with his 2-year old son in his arms. Read more…

 
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Planning Commissioner Phil Bacerra has not been honest about his business dealings


David Benavides and Phil Bacerra

Santa Ana Planning Commissioner Phil Bacerra’s term was renewed by the Santa Ana City Council at their last meeting.  He remains on the Planning Commission because his patron, Councilman David Benavides, refused to appoint someone else to take Bacerra’s place.

However we have found evidence that Bacerra has not exactly been forthcoming with the City Council about his finances.  Phil Bacerra’s Form 700’s (the financial disclosure forms that appointed and elected officials have to fill out) cover the years 2012, 2013 and 2014. On his initial Form 700 he discloses that he owns a company called Jacaranda but he does not disclose this for the years 2013 or 2014. Read more…

 
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Scumbag criminal defense lawyers stand up for pedo-loving Judge Marc Kelly


Remove Judge Marc Kelly from the Bench.png

As expected Orange County’s criminal defense lawyers are defending the pedo-loving Judge Marc Kelly, who came under fire recently after he reduced a possible 25 years to life sentence to only 10 years, for Santa Ana resident Kevin Jonas Rojano-Nieto, who sodomized a 3-year old little girl, who turned out to be his stepsister.

The OC Weekly published the official response to the public demand, led by three Orange County Supervisors (Todd Spitzer, Shawn Nelson and Lisa Bartlett), that Kelly resign, from the Orange County Defense Bar Association: Read more…

 
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The OCTA seeks volunteers to serve on two advisory committees


OCTA Citizens Advisory Committee

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 10, 2015

FOR MORE INFORMATION: Joel Zlotnik (714) 560-5713, Eric Carpenter (714) 560-5697

OCTA Seeks Volunteers to Serve on Advisory Committees

Applications for advisory committees are being accepted through May 8

ORANGE – The Orange County Transportation Authority is seeking community leaders to fill seats on its Citizens Advisory Committee. OCTA is also seeking volunteers who represent individuals with disabilities and senior citizens in the county to serve on its Special Needs Advisory Committee.

These 34-member committees meet throughout the year to provide input on a broad spectrum of transportation projects, studies and outreach activities and offer input to OCTA staff and its board of directors. Read more…

 
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Annual Memorial Day service at Fairhaven Memorial Park set for May 25

May 25, 2015
10:30 amto12:00 pm

Fairhaven 2015 Memorial Day event

“Celebrate Freedom”: Fairhaven Memorial Park’s 23rd Annual Memorial Day Service set for May 25

More than 3,500 Orange County residents are expected to “Celebrate Freedom” with Fairhaven Memorial Park & Mortuary at its 23rd Annual Memorial Day Service on Monday, May 25 at 10:30 a.m. Attendees will enjoy inspiring speeches by military veterans, a “Parade of Flags” by The Tustin Young Marines, the Boy Scouts of America and the U.S. Naval Sea Cadet Corps, and music by the Orange County Concert Band and the Tustin Community Choir. The event will begin with a special performance of the National Anthem by the “Star Spangled Singer” contest winner and conclude with an aerial fly-over of World War II-era planes by Memorial Flights.

This celebration of patriotism will also feature an antique cars display, “America’s Wars” life-sized photo essay and more. Complimentary hot dogs and refreshments will be served. Read more…

 
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Woman to face trial for throwing glass bottles at a Buddhist Temple

Published on April 10, 2015 by in Crime, Santa Ana

Trang Thu Pham

ORANGE COUNTY DISTRICT ATTORNEY PRESS RELEASE

Case # 15CF0089

Date: April 10, 2015

WOMAN TO FACE TRIAL FOR REPEATEDLY THROWING GLASS BOTTLES AT STATUES IN FRONT OF BUDDHIST TEMPLE

SANTA ANA – A woman is scheduled to face trial for repeatedly throwing glass bottles at statues in front of a Buddhist temple. Trang Thu Pham, 45, Santa Ana, is charged with one felony count of vandalism of a religious property, and one felony count of vandalism with damage of $400 or more. If convicted, she faces a maximum sentence of three years in state prison. Opening statements are scheduled to begin Monday, April 13, 2015, at 9:00 a.m. in Department C-29, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana.

Between Nov. 25, 2014, and Jan. 7, 2015, Pham is accused of throwing and smashing glass bottles on several religious statues outside of the Huong Tich Buddhist Temple (HTBT) in Santa Ana. On 10 separate days, HTBT employees noticed the broken glass and damage to the statues and contacted the Santa Ana Police Department (SAPD), who began investigating this case. The defendant was observed on surveillance cameras on three separate days throwing numerous bottles at the temple statues. Read more…

 
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Texas man charged with raping a girl under the age of 10, in Santa Ana

Published on April 10, 2015 by in Crime, Santa Ana

Dustin Lee Morgan

Santa Ana Police Department

Advisory: MAN TO BE ARRAIGNED FOR ENTERING HOME AND SEXUALLY ASSAULTING SLEEPING GIRL UNDER TEN YEARS OLD

*This case is a 2008 cold case linked through DNA

SANTA ANA – A man is scheduled to be arraigned Monday for entering the home of a girl under 10 years old and sexually assaulting her while she was asleep in her bed. Dustin Lee Morgan, 36, Texarkana, Texas, is charged with one felony count of performing lewd acts upon a child under 14 years old, one felony count of sexual penetration of a child under 10-years-old and a sentencing enhancement allegation for performing lewd acts on a child under 14 during the commission of a burglary. If convicted he faces a maximum sentence of 25 years to life in state prison. He is scheduled to be arraigned on Monday, April 13, 2015, at 10:00 a.m. in Department CJ-1, Central Jail, Santa Ana.

At approximately 5:00 a.m. on Feb. 8, 2008, the defendant is accused of breaking into the Santa Ana home of Jane Doe. Jane Doe is under the age of 10. Morgan is accused of walking into Jane Doe’s bedroom while she was sleeping. The defendant is accused of pushing the victim’s face down after she woke up and covering Jane Doe’s mouth to prevent her from making any noise. The defendant is accused of keeping his hand over the victim’s mouth while sexually assaulted her. Read more…

 
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Santa Ana man’s killer, who was on the Most Wanted list, convicted

Published on April 10, 2015 by in Crime, OCDA, Santa Ana

Gerald Guy Byrne

ORANGE COUNTY DISTRICT ATTORNEY PRESS RELEASE

Case # 11CF3436

Date: April 10, 2015

MAN FORMERLY ON SAPD’S MOST WANTED LIST SENTENCED TO 55 YEARS TO LIFE IN PRISON FOR MURDERING EMPLOYER IN 2009

SANTA ANA – A man who was on the Santa Ana Police Department’s (SAPD) most wanted list was sentenced today to 55 years to life in state prison for murdering his employer. Gerald Guy Byrne, 54, was found guilty by a jury on March 11, 2015, of one felony count of second degree murder. The Court also found the defendant’s two prior strike convictions for robbery in 1986 and arson in 1993 to be true.

At the time of the crime, Byrne was working for 69-year-old Charles Samo. Read more…

 
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SAPD DUI checkpoint set for tonight at 2100 N. Main Street

Published on April 10, 2015 by in Crime, Santa Ana

dui checks in santa ana
Santa Ana Police Department

Advisory: SAPD conducting a DUI/Drivers License checkpoint on Friday, April 10th, 2015 from 9PM – 3AM, area of 2100 N. Main St.

The Santa Ana Police Department will be conducting a DUI/Drivers License checkpoint on Friday, April 10th, 2015. It will begin at 9:00PM and is scheduled to conclude at 3:00AM. It will be conducted in the area of 2100 N. Main Street, Santa Ana, CA. Read more…

 
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Santa Ana man sentenced for fatal hit and run DUI crash


Guillermo Velasquez Flores

ORANGE COUNTY DISTRICT ATTORNEY PRESS RELEASE

Case # 14CF2899

Date: April 9, 2015

DRIVER SENTENCED FOR HIT AND RUN CRASH AFTER RUNNING RED LIGHT AT INTERSECTION AND CRASHING INTO SUV KILLING PASSENGER AND INJURING DRIVER

SANTA ANA – A driver was convicted and sentenced today for a hit and run crash after running a red light at an intersection and crashing into a sport utility vehicle (SUV) that killed a passenger and injured the driver. Guillermo Flores Velasquez, 45, Santa Ana, pleaded guilty to one felony count of hit and run with permanent injury or death and one misdemeanor count of vehicular manslaughter by unlawful manner of driving without gross negligence. He was sentenced to three years in state prison and ordered to pay restitution.

At approximately 7:10 p.m. on Sept. 1, 2014, Velasquez was driving his Dodge Stratus traveling westbound on Santa Ana Boulevard approaching a red light at the intersection of Broadway in Santa Ana. Read more…

 
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Santa Ana living kidney donor to run a 200-mile relay race on April 10-11


Donate Life Twelve Living Kidney Donors to Run in 200-Mile Relay Race to Raise Awareness About Healthy Lives After Donation Huntington Beach, Fri., Apr. 10, 6:15am, to San Diego, Sat., Apr. 11, 4:30 pm Twelve living kidney donors will run the 200-mile, overnight Ragnar Relay So Cal from Huntington Beach to San Diego to raise awareness that people can still lead normal, healthy lives after donation and to inspire others to take action in support of living and deceased donation. Over the course of two days and one night, team #344, “Have You Seen My Kidney?” will join 762 other teams in the race. Each participant will run three times, with each leg ranging between three and eight miles, varying in difficulty. Participants: Tyson Wood (Rescue, CA) and Bill Martinez (Lynwood, CA), who donated to their sisters; Kathleen Hostert (Fullerton, CA), who donated to her husband, Kathy Vochoska (Bakersfield, CA),who donated to her son and Leann Slaby Bier (Los Angeles, CA), who donated to her father and lasted 30 of 39 days on the TV show, ”Survivor;” Phillip Palmer (Los Angeles, CA), Michelle Guardino (Loomis, CA), and Fernando Landeros (South El Monte, CA), who donated to friends; Melanie Medlock (Scottsdale, AZ), who donated to an old friend after reconnecting on Facebook; team captain Rick Glover (Santa Ana, CA), who donated to a friend and walked alongside the 2015 Donate Life Rose Parade float; retired sheriff captain Elizabeth Kelly (Folsom, CA), and Ivan Slaban (Escondido, CA), civilian member of the San Diego Police Dept., who donated to strangers. Read more…

 
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