Tag: WeHo

Police Seek Assistance Identifying Robbery Victims

January 18, 2024 ·

WEST HOLLYWOOD—On Wednesday, January 17, investigators from the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department (LASD) and West Hollywood Station sent out a news bulletin requesting assistance from the public in identifying possible victims of 41-year-old Arriaza Hardy. Hardy was arrested for two separate strong-armed robberies that occurred on January 12.

According to the LASD website, on January 12, at approximately 1:55 a.m., officers responded to a call in the 9000 block of Rangely Avenue in West Hollywood. The suspect removed her kitchen window. The victim screamed when she heard the suspect entering her home. The suspect entered the residence and began threatening the victim. The victim was able to escape the apartment without further harm.

On Friday, January 12, at approximately 12:01, police were called to the scene of an attempted burglary, also in the 9000 block of Rangely Avenue. The suspect followed the female victim to her apartment. The victim told police she was afraid he was trying to get into her apartment. A struggle ensued. The victim was able to break free from the suspect’s grasp and sought refuge in her neighbor’s apartment.

West Hollywood Station deputies located the suspect who was still in the second victim’s home. The suspect, then identified as Hardy Arriaza, was arrested in connection with both burglaries.

According to the LASD Inmate Locator, Arriaza is a Hispanic male approximately 143 lbs. He was arrested at 3:00 a.m. and booked into jail at West Hollywood Station at 4:30 a.m. His bail is set at $500,000.

On January 15, the suspect was assigned to Twin Towers Correctional Facility at 450 Bauchet Street. His court date is scheduled on January 31, 2024, at 8:30 a.m. at LAX Superior Court W31 located at 11701 La Cienega Boulevard in Los Angeles.

This investigation is ongoing and anyone with information on this incident or similar incidents is encouraged to contact Detective Zeff at (310) 358-4033 or bgzeff@lasd.org. If you would like to remain anonymous, you may call Crime Stoppers at (800)222-8477, or on-line at www.p3tips.com.

By Sharon

Weekly Crime Report For LASD West Hollywood Station

January 10, 2024 ·

WEST HOLLYWOOD—On Tuesday, January 9, West Hollywood Station of Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department (LASD) released their weekly crime report for January 1 through January 7.  Property crimes are on the rise in WEHO.

January 1 began with an aggravated assault with a gun that occurred in the 1000 block of Orlando Avenue. Police were called after a traffic collision resulted in an argument that turned violent. One man shot the other. The bullet grazed the head of the victim.

On January 1 there was a theft of property in the 9000 block of Cynthia Street. An unknown suspect gained entry to a secure parking garage and robbed a storage locker of two electric drills and four pairs of shoes.

Police were called to an armed robbery that occurred in the 8600 block of Santa Monica Blvd. A man was approached at an ATM by an armed man who held a gun to the victim demanding cash from the ATM. The victim gave the suspect the cash.

Between the hours of 7:00 p.m. on New Year’s Eve and 3:00 a.m. on New Year’s Day, a backpack was stolen from the trunk of a car. Reports indicate that the trunk may not have been locked. There was no sign of forced entry. Credit cards were stolen out of the backpack and used to make fraudulent purchases.

On January 2, there was an attempted burglary in the 8600 block of Melrose Avenue. Reports indicate that the suspect tried to access the residence by prying the door open with a crowbar. The suspect did not gain entry.

A package delivered to an apartment in the 1000 of Palm Avenue sometime between January 2 and January 4 was reported stolen. The package contained a laptop computer. It was stolen from the hallway of an apartment complex where delivery personnel left it as a door-drop delivery.

On January 3, at 1:30 p.m. a man entered the Macy’s Store in the 7100 block of Santa Monica Blvd. The suspect took skin care products and perfumes. Police reported that the suspect left without payment and that this was considered a grand theft due to the dollar amount of items stolen.

Also on January 3, another package was stolen from an apartment complex. The suspect reportedly pried a locked door open and stole the package.

On January 4, at 1:35 a.m., a residential burglary occurred in the 800 block of Hilldale Avenue. An unknown suspect walked into the door of the home. The suspect left without further incident when he heard the homeowner.

On January 4, there was a vehicle theft in the 8900 block of Rosewood Avenue. The suspect reportedly broke the window of a vehicle parked alongside the street on Rosewood Avenue. Camera equipment and some clothing were stolen from the car.

No crimes were reported for January 5.

On January 6, police responded to a call of an assault after a man who was intoxicated was denied entry at the club in the 8900 block of Santa Monica Boulevard. The suspect bit two of the employees denying him entry. The suspect fled the scene. Responding officers were able to locate the suspect and arrest him.

Two strong-arm robberies occurred on January 6. The first occurred in the vicinity of Melrose Avenue and Santa Monica Boulevard. A woman was walking alone on Santa Vincente Boulevard when a male perpetrator grabbed her from behind trying to take her fanny pack. The suspect drug her on the ground and took her fanny pack and another small satchel/purse. He fled the scene in a black sedan.

In the second case, two women were walking in the area of Westmount Drive and West Knoll when a man exited the passenger side of the vehicle and chased after the women. He tried to get the phone from the first individual and failed but was able to get the second woman’s phone from her.

On January 7, when a woman was reported chasing a man with a knife in the 100 block of Genesee Avenue. The woman was attempting to stab the man whom she reportedly knew. She could be heard saying that he, “cheated on her.” Police arrested the woman for aggravated assault.

On January 7, a suspect had her cell phone stolen from her front pocket on the dance floor at a club. 

On January 7, a woman had her phone stolen from her purse in the 600 block of Robertson Boulevard.

On January 7, a third victim had her cell phone stolen from her purse at the club.

According to a website called Neighborhood Scout, the crime rate for violent crimes in West Hollywood is 5.67 percent. The chances of being a victim of a violent crime in WEHO is 1 in 176 chances.

Neighborhood Scout reports a 36.61 percent crime rate for property crimes. The chances of becoming a victim of a property crime in WEHO is 1 in 27.

By Sharon








Speeding Car Crashes Into Duplex In WEHO

January 5, 2024 ·

WEST HOLLYWOOD—On Tuesday, January 2, at approximately 9:30 p.m. police responded to a two-vehicle crash at the intersection of Fountain and Detroit Avenues in WEHO. A black BMW traveling at a high rate of speed collided with another vehicle that had slowed to make a left turn. The BMW then drove through the front gate of some area apartments. The suspect then hit a retaining wall in front of a fountain and into one of the duplexes.

Reports indicate that at least one of the people in the crash was taken by ambulance to an area hospital. There were no other reported injuries from those residing within the complex, or nearby pedestrians.

According to a bystander, the person who lived in the home that was damaged in the crash had just moved in.

This traffic incident occurred one day before the new speeding limit in the area went into effect. According to officials, the speed limit in that area has since changed from 35 mph to 30 mph.

The names and possible charges of those involved in the accident have not been released as of the time of print.

By Sharon





Iconic WEHO Restaurant Closes After 30 Years

December 18, 2023 ·

WEST HOLLYWOOD—On December 15, Marcos Italian Restaurant located at 8200 Santa Monica Boulevard announced that they will be closing their doors for good after 30 years of service to the community.

Lasagna Bolognese

According to their website, the last chance to get in one last meal at one of WEHO’s most iconic restaurants will be on Christmas Eve. Whether you delighted in the turkey lasagna, lasagna Bolognese, pizza, or one of the exquisite desserts, there are only a couple weeks left to indulge yourself at one of WEHO’s favorite establishments.

The owner, Mark “Marco” Capanni posted the following statement on his website. He fittingly calls it, “The End of an Era,” citing operating costs as the main reason for the restaurants closing.

“Dear Loyal Customers,

It is with a heavy heart that we share the news of the closing of Marco’s, our West Hollywood Italian food icon, on Sunday, December 24th. Since 1993, we’ve been privileged to serve our community with passion and love.

The decision to close is influenced by the challenges of staff shortages and the increase in costs associated with wages for our dedicated team, coupled with rising food costs and operational constraints. Despite our best efforts, sustaining our operations has become increasingly challenging.

We invite all our loyal patrons to join us for a final meal at Marco’s, where we can share memories, stories, and the flavors that have defined our culinary journey. Your support has been the heartbeat of our establishment, and we are grateful for the incredible memories created together.

As a token of our appreciation, we are delighted to offer a 25% discount on all entrées from now until closing on Christmas Eve. To redeem this offer, kindly mention ‘25% OFF’ to your server when placing your order. Please note that this promotion is valid for dine-in orders only and does NOT include Lunch Specials.

As we bid farewell, we extend our deepest gratitude for being an integral part of the Marco’s family. .

Warm regards,

Mark “Marco” Capanni”

By Sharon

Security Ambassadors In Uniform Caught Flirting With Two Women

August 9, 2023 ·

WEST HOLLYWOOD—Security Ambassadors are facing scrutiny for being caught engaging in intimate behavior with two women while in uniform as first reported by WeHo Times on Saturday, August 5.

The video was first submitted to WeHo times by what was described as a concerned West Hollywood citizen. Video footage shows two security ambassadors kissing and flirting with two women next to Circus of Books on the corner of Santa Monica Boulevard and La Jolla Avenue just before 1 a.m.

In one portion of the video one of the ambassadors appears to barely have his shirt on.

Block by Block, the company that staffs the security guards and is investigating the matter, issued a statement that read:

“We take matters such as this very seriously. Block by Block ambassadors are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner at all times… This incident is being investigated by our management team and will be addressed according to our company policy.”

Block by Block Security Ambassadors are unarmed and help provide safe passage to residents at night. There are identified by their blue uniforms and act as watchdogs for law enforcement.

West Hollywood residents have shown mixed feelings about the incident. “Probably drunk girls being taken advantage of. The usual.” Peter Blunt wrote on X formerly known as Twitter.

“Typical, our tax dollars hard at work, just not the work we need,” wrote someone by the name of Rob.

Louis D Jacobs wrote on Facebook, “Ambassadors are worthless just like the WeHo politicians that defunded the police and got rid of 2 sheriffs. What did you expect from unarmed bicycle riders?”

Others responded with, “If it’s just a girl saying hi to her boyfriend, who cares. Context needed.”

“This is the only form of corruption I approve of,” said another.

By Christianne

LASD Seeks Public’s Help In Robbery Case

August 3, 2023 ·

WEST HOLLYWOOD—The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department is seeking the public’s help to find three suspects who robbed a pedestrian at gunpoint.

On Wednesday, July 19, at 12:38 a.m., the victim was walking on a sidewalk along the 800 block of Larrabee Street when a group of people in a black SUV stopped right in front of him. The three suspects exited the vehicle armed with handguns and a rifle.

They pushed the victim against a fence and pulled him to the ground pointing the guns to his chest. The victim’s cell phone and wallet were taken. He didn’t appear to fight back.

After the assailants left the scene, the victim got up and walked away. It is unknown if the victim sustained any injuries.

https://www.facebook.com/watch/?ref=embed_video&v=201362375950971

According to surveillance video that was published on LASD’s Facebook, two of the three suspects concealed their faces with hoodies while one was unmasked. On the night of the incident the unmasked suspect was wearing a sweatshirt with a logo that read “cookies.” He appears to have shoulder-length dark hair that was tied into a ponytail and has a light goatee.

Any information or similar incidents, please contact West Hollywood Sheriff’s Station – Detective Candice Gonzales (310) 358-4011 or e-mail: c2mgonza@lasd.org

By Christianne

WeHo Now Has The Highest Minimum Wage In The Nation

July 5, 2023 ·

WEST HOLLYWOOD—The City of West Hollywood now has the highest minimum wage in the country after wages increased to $19.08 hourly on Saturday, July 1, beating Seattle which had the highest wage at $18.69.

According to reports many small business owners are unhappy about the increase stating that it could drive them out of business.

Lucian Tudor, chief executive of upscale restaurant La Boheme, told the Los Angeles Times he has cut staff from 120 to 80 to trim costs. The city’s minimum wage climbed $1 in January to $17.50 an hour for businesses with at least 50 employees.

“These pay increases are about superficiality and about opportunistic politicians who are just trying to make a name for themselves,” Tudor, who would prefer a minimum wage that accounts for tips like what New York City has, told the news source.

Employers facing financial hardships can apply for a one-year delay via a waiver with the city.

This increase in pay is reported to go up again on July 1, 2024. The updated hourly total will be posted on the city’s website.

Jorge Zeparak, 52, who is an immigrant from Peru who works at the Beverly Hills Hotel spoke with the Los Angeles Times in an interview stating that he has seen an improvement in his co-workers lives due to the city’s pay increases implemented in the past few years.

“The reality is that hotel companies are making record profits while workers are barely getting by,” said Zeparak.

Other major cities thorough out the country saw minimum wage increases recently with Los Angeles now at $16.68 and San Francisco at $18.07. Hotel workers in the City of Los Angeles who work at hotels with 60 rooms or more saw an increase to $19.73 from $18.86. Hotel workers in the City of Santa Monica are also seeing the same increase.

According to reports, one must make $40 hourly to live comfortably in the State of California. Smart Asset states that the U.S. city that provides people with the most comfort financially is St. Louis, Missouri.

By Christianne

WeHo Launches News Text Messaging Program

June 2, 2023 ·

WEST HOLLYWOOD—The City of West Hollywood indicated to Canyon News in a press release that on Thursday, June 1, they will be launching the pilot phase of a new text messaging program. This will serve as an innovative and personalized way for community members to stay connected to the City.

“I’m excited that the City of West Hollywood will begin using text messaging as one of the many ways we connect community members to City news and information,” said City of West Hollywood Mayor Sepi Shyne. “The new text platform is going to be so helpful for people who want to stay informed. I love the warm and conversational tone of Community and I’m looking forward to how the text platform will expand as the City covers new topics of community interest in the months to come.”

The pilot phase of the City’s new text message program will help the City receive direct feedback to help shape text communications that best respond to community interests and needs. During the coming months, the City will add functionality to the text tool for an expanded rollout with additional news, updates, and information and the City will launch an exuberant outdoor media campaign to help raise awareness about opting-in.

The City’s new text message program is built on the Community platform, which is currently used by corporations, public figures, sports teams, celebrities, and government entities such as President Joe Biden, former President Barack Obama, Former First Lady Michelle Obama, The White House, and more. The platform helps users to choose subjects about which they prefer to receive text messages and will not distribute unrelated advertising or spam messages. As the first municipal government using Community, the City of West Hollywood will have a unique opportunity to help shape a new standard of government text communications.

The City’s new text message program joins an array of ways that the City works to engage with community members including:

City website news – www.weho.org/news

City events and meetings calendar – www.weho.org/calendar

Opt-in email subscriptions – www.weho.org/email

WeHoTV YouTube channel – www.youtube.com/wehotv

WeHo TV broadcast and streaming – www.weho.org/wehotv

The City maintains social media pages across all major platforms and urges community members to follow the City (@wehocity) and turn on notifications to get the latest news, updates, and information. Visit www.weho.org/socialmedia for details. The City’s text message program adds to many communications efforts that help keep people who live, work, and play in West Hollywood informed about City topics, such as citywide mailers, news releases, printed materials in City and community facilities, and outdoor media campaign materials placed on street lamps, fence locations, digital billboards, transit shelter posters, and more.

The city indicated that this new tool is not to be used for emergency alerts or notifications.

The City of West Hollywood and the West Hollywood Station of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Station provide community safety and emergency alerts/notifications via Nixle, which is used by more than 8,000 public safety agencies. Nixle alerts may include severe weather or traffic information, criminal activities details, missing persons alerts, and more. To opt-in text a West Hollywood ZIP code to 888777. More information is available at www.nixle.com. Los Angeles County, additionally, provides emergency mass notification text messages via Alert LA County; more information is available at https://ready.lacounty.gov/alerts

For more information about the City of West Hollywood’s text message program, please contact Jayce Simpson, City of West Hollywood Digital Media Officer, at (323) 848-6402 or at jsimpson@weho.org. For people who are Deaf or hard of hearing, please call TTY (323) 848-6496.

By Christianne

West Hollywood City Council Votes To Add Four LASD Positions

May 17, 2023 ·

WEST HOLLYWOOD—On Monday, May 16 the West Hollywood City Council approved a motion to add four positions to the city’s budget for Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department services. The positions include one Entertainment Deputy Policing Sergeant, two non-sworn Public Information Officer/Community Liaison positions, and one Sheriff’s Deputy.

The item is posted as part of the meeting agenda and the meeting is available for viewing on the City’s WeHoTV YouTube channel at www.youtube.com/wehotv.

In June 2022, the city council added 30 unarmed security ambassadors to conduct foot patrol in the neighborhood.

The motion includes an option for the city council to consider adding another sheriff’s deputy following a community safety update meeting in December 2022.

“The safety and well-being of our community is the City of West Hollywood’s top priority. We’re seeing that crime is trending downward in 2023 from 2022 levels. We’re deeply committed to continuing that trend and making sure our city is safe,” said City of West Hollywood Mayor Sepi Shyne. “We are continuing to work proactively with our community safety partners. There are more Block by Block security ambassadors than ever before and our Sheriff’s community policing team is out during days and our entertainment policing team is out at night so that West Hollywood is a safe place to live, work, and visit around the clock.”

The Block by Block Security Ambassadors Hotline provides access to free, 24/7 support by phone at (833) WEHO-BBB / (833) 934-6222 or by phone and text message at (323) 821-8604. For additional information, visit www.weho.org/bbb.

West Hollywood contracts with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department for law enforcement and the Los Angeles County Fire Department for fire protection. For anyone with public safety concerns, contact the Sheriff’s Station 24/7 at (310) 855-8850. In an emergency, always call 911. For additional information about Community Safety programs in West Hollywood, visit www.weho.org/publicsafety.

For additional information about Neighborhood & Business Safety programs in West Hollywood, visit www.weho.org/code.

For more details contact West Hollywood Director of Community Safety Danny Rivas at (323) 848-6424 or drivas@weho.org. For people who are Deaf or hard of hearing call TTY (323) 848-6496.

Written By Rob Aungier and Casey Jacobs

Large Melee Captured At The Grove

May 8, 2023 ·

WEST HOLLYWOOD—On Sunday, May 7, a large fight was captured on video outside The Grove Shopping Mall involving at least eight people. The incident occurred outside the movie theatre at 189 The Grove Drive after 3:30 p.m., officials with the Los Angeles Police Department confirmed.

The video shows what appears to be a group of people fighting in one of the streets that runs through the outdoor mall. A security guard moved toward the fight as it spilled onto a nearby sidewalk. The guard and another can be seen standing on the outskirts of the fight as it continued.

The video shows a man getting his shirt ripped off as he attempted to get out of the middle of the fight. The shirtless man is seen back in the middle of the struggle where several people can be seen punching and fighting.

A female bystander can be seen in the video shouting:

“Where is the police? Where is security?”

The grove is a 575,000 square-foot open-air retail and entertainment hub that is adjacent to The Original Farmers Market at 3rd Street and Fairfax Avenue.

The individuals involved in the incident were escorted to their cars by authorities. No arrested were made during the incident.

By Rob

WeHo Bans Use Of Glue Traps

April 21, 2023 ·

WEST HOLLYWOOD—The city of West Hollywood unanimously voted on Tuesday, April 18, to ban the use of glue traps making them the first city in the country to do so.  

This ordinance has been in progress for about a year and has been led by Councilmember Lauren Meister. “We are a city that’s a city of compassion and a progressive city,” said Meister. “So a progressive and compassionate city has to lead the way. So hopefully we will be a role model for other cities in banning these inhumane glue traps.” Other pest options will be explored. 

According to Meister, the city does not have a rodent problem but the traps themselves can be lethal for small animals. 

Courtney Penly, a West Hollywood resident and member of PETA spoke during Tuesday’s meeting, “As the staff report highlights, animals that get stuck on glue traps are incapable of freeing themselves.”

This new ordinance is said to take effect next year. 

According to animal rights activists, glue traps are heinous because they immobilize mice and rats, leaving them to slowly dehydrate, suffer and die.

The organization Canadians for Animal Protection, believe glue traps are so cruel that they have taken some of Canada’s biggest retailers — Walmart, Canadian Tire, Home Hardware, Home Depot and Lowes — to the Ontario Superior Court of Justice, in hopes of banning them from selling the traps.

According to RSPCA, “the use of live traps is a popular choice for many people who prefer to avoid killing rats and mice but want to remove them from their home or property. However, the humaneness of live traps depends on how frequently the traps are checked, the design of the trap, and whether food, water or nesting material are provided to avoid starvation, dehydration or cold stress.

Live traps must be inspected every morning and any trapped animals humanely killed or released into a suitable location. Animals must not be left to die slowly in the trap. Unfortunately, the available evidence suggests that the survival rate of relocated animals is often very low – releasing animals into a new location is therefore unlikely to be a more humane alternative to killing them quickly and painlessly.”

By Christianne