Crime Watch is a weekly series culled from reports provided by the Santa Monica Police Department. These are arrests only. All parties are innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
Tuesday, Jan. 18, at 12:46 a.m.,
Santa Monica police officers responded to the 3200 block of Pico Boulevard — Trader Joe’s — regarding a theft of plastic crates. Officers received an update that suspects were loading the crates into a truck. As officers were driving northbound in the 2000 block of Cloverfield Boulevard, they saw a U-hail truck driving south. Officers conducted a traffic stop and allegedly found 400 plastic containers in the back of the truck. Each container was valued at $15, police said. Officers arrested the two suspects, Vitaliano Lazaro, 20, and Alex Recio, 27, of Los Angeles. They were booked for grand theft. Bail was set at $20,000 and $50,000 respectively. Recio had two warrants.
Friday, Jan. 21, at 2:30 p.m.,
Officers on routine patrol in the 1800 block of Pico Boulevard saw a driver make an unsafe lane change, nearly striking another vehicle. Officers pulled the driver over and recognized him from previous arrests. Officers asked the driver if he had anything illegal on him. The driver allegedly told officers he had a knife in one pocket and a prescription pain killer in the other. The driver was on probation. Officers searched him and located the knife and drugs, which were in a pill bottle with a name removed from the prescription label. Officers placed the driver under arrest for possession of a controlled substance. He was identified as Victor Torres, 26, of Los Angeles. His bail was set at $10,000.
Friday, Jan. 21, at 1:30 p.m.,
Officers were on routine patrol in the 500 block of Santa Monica Boulevard when they saw three people standing next to a public building. One of the three was smoking a cigarette in violation of the municipal code prohibiting smoking within 20 feet of an entrance to a building open to the public. Officers made contact with the suspect and discovered he was on probation. He also appeared to be drunk, police said. Further investigation revealed that the suspect was in possession of an open can of beer and a cell phone that had been stolen from a car in Los Angeles County. Officers also found prescription drugs that the suspect did not have a prescription for. Officers placed the suspect under arrest for possession of stolen property, public intoxication, a probation violation, possession of a prescription drug without a prescription and possession of an open container of alcohol. His bail was set at $20,000.
Saturday, Jan. 22, at 12:01 a.m.,
Officers responded to the 2000 block of Lincoln Boulevard regarding a woman who was drunk. When officers arrived, they found woman passed out in a chair with an open bottle of vodka beside her. Officers said the woman was uncooperative and extremely intoxicated. Officers had to carry the suspect to the police car, officers said. She was placed under arrest for public intoxication and a probation violation. She was identified as Margaret Lockett, 57, of Santa Monica. Her bail was set at $10,000.
Saturday, Jan. 22, at 9:17 p.m.,
Officers responded to the 3200 block of Wilshire Boulevard — BevMo — regarding a burglary in progress. When officers arrived, they made contact with the store manager who said a suspect from an earlier theft showed up at the store. The manager locked the front door to keep the suspect inside until police arrived. Officers detained the suspect and the manager produced pictures of the suspect concealing bottles of alcohol in his pants and then leaving the store without paying for the items. The suspect was placed under arrest for burglary and a parole violation. He was identified as Eric Johannsen, 44, of the Pacific Palisades. He was not eligible for bail.
Sunday, Jan. 23, at 7:18 a.m.,
Officers responded to the 2300 block of Virginia Avenue regarding a suspicious vehicle parked in the middle of the road. When officers arrived, they did not see the car, but they did see someone sitting in a car watching them. Officers made contact with the man in the car to see if he saw the vehicle in question. While talking with the man, officers said they smelled marijuana. Officers searched the suspect and allegedly found pot and a glass vial commonly used to snort cocaine. Officers arrested the suspect for possession of a controlled substance and marijuana. He was identified as Richard Wladich, 45, of Santa Monica. His bail was set at $10,000.
Editor-in-Chief Kevin Herrera compiled these reports.