Recent credit card fraud and motor vehicle burglary

LAPD Senior Lead Officer Eve Wight has a timely message for residents regarding door-to-door magazine sales and reporting suspicious activity:

I am officially back from vacation and back on the job.  I hope that this email finds you all happy and healthy.  I am still trying to get caught up on all of the goings on in Pedro during my absence.  However I do want to share with you a couple recent developments.

Unfortunately one of our South Shores residents was victimized by an individual claiming to be selling magazines.  The suspect managed to get a hold of the victim’s credit card and made an attempt to use it.  This story ends well however, because the individual was stopped, arrested and prosecuted.  He was convicted and will be facing some jail time.

I want to strongly remind everyone, please do not encourage these people.  It is often the most innocuous seeming individuals who can do the most damage.  Never let these people into your homes, you don’t even have to answer the door to them.  These are your homes, and this is your neighborhood.

I know that we all want to be polite and we hate the idea of being rude to someone who has only good intentions.  But I can assure you that 99% of the individuals who are soliciting in this manner, are doing so fraudulently, either trying to get you to give them money, or trying to gain access to your home to steal your money, credit cards and even prescription medications.

They also use magazine sales as a way to get a feel for the neighborhood, see who’s home at what times, and to judge what kind of reactions they get from residents.  I strongly urge everyone to not only not answer the door, but to state to these people, in no uncertain terms, that they are not welcome in your neighborhood and that you are calling the police.  We need to make sure that these people know that the neighborhood is watching them and will not put up with that kind of behavior.

In addition, today 03/30, a radio call was broadcast of a possible Burglary for Motor Vehicle – Suspect in the area of 27th and Patton [Palisades neighborhood].  The neighbors in this area are to be commended.  We received three different radio calls regarding the same individual, all of which had great descriptions and gave us a lot of information.

Unfortunately, the suspect was scared out of the area by a neighbor prior to the arrival of police.  However, the diligent patrol car stayed in the area and luckily came across the suspect a few minutes later as he was climbing out of the bushes and took him into custody.  Fortunately, the timing worked out in this case.

Due to the fact that the residents in the neighborhood were keeping an eye out for each other and for their neighborhood we were able to take a suspect into custody.  This is a really good example of why neighborhood watches are a good thing!

I will be sure to update you all on anything else important as I am made aware.  I wish you all a happy spring as we move into April!

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