Crime Report - Oct. 24, 2016

Friday, October 14:

At 9:45 p.m., officers were dispatched to the area of Stewart & Gray Road and Old
River School Road regarding a possible assault. The reporting party said she had been
travelling westbound on Stewart & Gray Road when she heard a single gunshot and
saw a vehicle speed off westbound Stewart & Gray Road. The victim pulled over and
noticed a single gunshot hole in her rear driver side door. Detectives are investigating.

Saturday, October 15:

At 1:15 p.m., officers were dispatched to an assault/road rage in the area of
Gardendale Street and Brock Avenue. The male suspect confronted a 59-year-old
Downey resident with a baseball bat when both men exited their vehicles. The suspect
struck the victim with the bat. The victim and suspect both returned to their vehicles and
drove away. Detectives are investigating.

Sunday, October 16:

At 1:20 a.m., officers were dispatched to Club DB Lounge after a man leaving the club became
involved in a fight. The suspect kicked the victim in the head and fled in a vehicle. The
victim was transported to a local hospital and was listed in stable condition. Detectives
are investigating.

At 2:45 a.m. officers responded to an alarm call at business located in the 8000 block of
Imperial Hwy. Officers observed a mini-van speed off from the location “blacked
out.” They attempted to stop the vehicle, however, the suspects fled. Officers followed
the vehicle and observed it crash on the 710 freeway. One suspect was immediately
taken into custody and another is still outstanding. Miscellaneous burglary tools were
located in the van, which had been stolen out of LAPD Wilshire Division. Detectives are

Sports Briefs: Downey, Warren ready for annual clash

DOWNEY –  The Downey High School football team defeated Lynwood at Lynwood 35-7 last Friday night. 

With the win, the Vikings improved to 6-1 overall and 2-0 in S.G.V.L. play while the Knights fell to 3-4 overall and 0-2 in S.G.V.L. play. 

Downey will host cross-town rival Warren tonight in their much anticipated rematch from last year. The Bears defeated Downey last season 23-6 at Warren. 

Warren comes into tonight’s game with an overall record of 0-6-1 and are 0-2 in S.G.V.L. play.
In the Lynwood game, the Vikings took a commanding lead and never looked back. Downey quarterback Trevor Hill completed 12/23 pass attempts for 243 yards with three touchdown passes and one interception. 

The Viking ground game amassed 185 yards on 41 carries with two touchdowns. Emari Demercado had 16 carries for 62 yards and one touchdown and Baraq Ross had 15 carries for 69 yards and one touchdown. 

The Downey receiving corps had 12 receptions for 243 yards and three touchdowns. Christopher Atkins had four receptions for 119 yards and one touchdown, Tony Ramirez had three receptions for 63 yards and one touchdown and Ryder Hawkins had two catches for 34 yards and one touchdown.

The Downey defense was led by Nicholas Whitney’s six solo and three assisted tackles, Noah Skobis’ six solo and two assisted tackles, Josh Cooper’s six solo and one assisted tackles, Brennan Fields’ three solo and four assisted tackles and Ryder Hawkins’ three solo and four assisted tackles.

Downey will host a currently undefeated Gahr (7-0, 2-0) team next week. The Gladiators are hosting Paramount tonight. 

■ The Warren High School football team was defeated by Gahr at Warren 21-7 last Friday night. 

With the loss, the Bears fell to 0-6-1 overall and 0-2 in S.G.V.L. play. With the win, the Gladiators improved to 7-0 overall and 2-0 in S.G.V.L. play. 

In the Gahr game, the Gladiators scored first and led 7-0 at the end of the first quarter. Warren did score a touchdown and converted the extra point in the second quarter but Gahr added two more touchdowns, with the conversions, to take a 21-7 lead into the locker rooms at halftime. 

The two teams exchanged the ball and field position in the second half with neither team managing to get into the endzone. The score remained 21-7 and that was the final score.
Bear quarterback Chris Venegas completed 4/14 pass attempts for 34 yards with one touchdown pass and three interceptions. 

The Bear ground game accumulated 222 yards on 45 carries. Nikko Fierro-Tuala carried the ball 13 times for 93 yards, Sebastian Valencia carried the ball 12 times for 58 yards and Jordan Mayes carried the ball 12 times for 41 yards. 

The Warren receiving corps had 4 receptions for 34 yards and one touchdown. Jordan Mayes had two catches for 20 yards and one touchdown, Robbie Colenzo had one reception for seven yards and Nikko Fierro-Tuala had one reception for seven yards.

Warren will host Dominguez next week. Dominguez is currently 1-6 overall and 0-2 in S.G.V.L. play. Dominguez defeated Warren 47-19 last season. 

■ The Warren High School girls’ tennis team currently has an overall record of 11-4 and are 9-2 in San Gabriel Valley League play. 

The Bears defeated Lynwood 15-3 on Oct. 11, defeated Paramount 14-4 on Oct. 13 and defeated Gahr 16-2 on Oct. 14. The only two league losses have come to cross-town rival Downey. 

As it stands now, Downey will be the top S.G.V.L. seed and Warren will be the second seed.
Warren was defeated by Downey at Downey 10-8 on Sept. 23 and again 9-9 (on criteria) at Warren on Oct. 6. The second win for Downey virtually clinched the S.G.V.L. title. 

The two teams played again on Tuesday at Downey in their third and final regular season scheduled match and Warren came away with the nail-biting, 10-8 win. The two teams battled each other for every point and some high level tennis was played. 

Warren will travel to Lynwood later today for their match against Lynwood. Today’s match against Lynwood will conclude Warren’s regular season schedule. The Bears defeated the Lady Knights 15-3 on Sept. 29 and again 15-4 on Oct. 11. 

The C.I.F. girls’ tennis playoff brackets will be released this weekend. Coach Starksen, her staff and players are looking forward to finishing league play on a high note and continuing on into postseason play.   

Doty Middle School's eighth grade volleyball champions.

Doty Middle School's eighth grade volleyball champions.

■ The first rotation of middle school sports has concluded and several city championships were claimed. 

Football and girls’ volleyball had six different grade level and gender teams competing. Doty claimed three outright city championships and a co-championship, Sussman claimed one, Stauffer claimed one and Griffiths claimed a co-championship. 

The Knights were city champions in 7th grade football, 8th grade girls’ volleyball, 7th grade girls’ volleyball and earned a co-championship with Griffiths in sixth grade girls’ volleyball. 
Sussman claimed a city championship in 8th grade football, Stauffer claimed a city championship in 6th grade football and Griffiths claimed a co-championship with Doty in 6th grade girls’ volleyball.

In 8th grade football, Sussman finished with a record of 5-0-1, Doty finished with a record of 3-2-1, Stauffer finished with a record of 2-4 and Griffiths finished with a record of 1-5. 

In 7th grade football, Doty finished with a record of 6-0, Stauffer finished with a record of 4-2, Sussman finished with a record of 2-4 and Griffiths finished with a record of 0-6. 

In 6th grade football, Stauffer finished with a record of 5-1, Griffiths finished with a record of 4-2, Sussman finished with a record of 2-4 and Doty finished with a record of 0-6.

In 8th grade girls’ volleyball, Doty finished with a record of 5-1, Sussman finished with a record of 4-2, Griffiths finished with a record of 2-4 and Stauffer finished with a record of 1-5. 

In 7th grade girls’ volleyball, Doty finished with a record of 6-0, Stauffer finished with a record of 3-3, Sussman finished with a record of 2-4 and Griffiths finished with a record of 1-5. 

In 6th grade girls’ volleyball, Doty and Griffiths both finished with a record of 5-1, Sussman finished with a record of 2-4 and Stauffer finished with a record of 0-6.

Roberta Cendejas mourned

 Roberta Ann Cendejas, born March 11, 1957 to Gabriel and Esther Cendejas, passed away Oct. 2. 

She graduated from Pius X High School in 1975.

She is survived by her father, Gabriel; brother, Anthony; sister, Angelina Gurrola; and nieces and nephews Chaise, Dillon, Griffin and Garrett.

Letter to the Editor: San Gabriel River

Dear Editor:

Most Downey residents have never walked, run, or biked along the San Gabriel Bike Trail between Florence Avenue and Firestone Boulevard. For those that use the trail frequently as a mean of exercise, there is increased disappointment at the deterioration of the riverbed. 

Over the past decade, small trees have now become large. While the trees provide shade and shelter for homeless encampments, the unfortunate by-product of the homeless is an excessive accumulation of trash and excrement left behind. The area described has now become unsightly.

Of greater concern in the potential impact of a major, prolonged rainstorm. The drought has lingered and the riverbed hasn’t been “cleansed” by water flow in too many years. Unfortunately, the now massive accumulation of debris from further up river as well as the local riverbed garbage will be trapped in the overgrown trees. This situation will result in a slower flow of water potentially causing a rapid backup of water. A worse case scenario would be an overflow of the riverbed causing local areas to become flooded.

The Department of Public Works and the Army Corp of Engineers are responsible for river bed maintenance. Historically, large dump trucks would enter the riverbed and huge amounts of silt, sand and debris would be removed, resulting in the riverbed floor lowered to keep Downey and other communities from flooding during that predicted 100-year flood. 

I’m sure the cost of cleaning the riverbed, just for this small section, is enormous. Mitigation grants could be written with a proposal to clear the trees and the lower the river bed. While costly, it could be cheaper than the potential flooding that could result in a major and prolonged rainstorm. We’ve seen that destruction in other parts of the United States (Hurricane Madeline just one current example) and I’m certain no one wishes that to happen to our City of Downey and other local communities.

Jim Weidner

Shared Stories: Here I Am, Ready or Not

Mervin Chantland wore a body cast for eight years of his childhood as treatment for a severe case of tuberculosis diagnosed when he was two. His loving family found medical help in Iowa City, over 200 miles from their family farm, and every few months Mervin made the journey to have the cast replaced on his growing body.

Shared Stories is a weekly column featuring articles by participants in a writing class at the Norwalk Senior Center. Bonnie Mansell is the instructor for this free class offered through the Cerritos College Adult Education Program. Curated by Carol Kearns

By Mervin Chantland

I was born December 13, 1934, on a small farm just outside Badger, Iowa, and was given the name Mervin Darvin Chantland. I was the ninth of Carl and Cora Chantland’s 11 children.  My claim to fame in my first year of life was related to be by my sister Jeanette. She said I walked at a younger age than any of the other children – in my crib at seven and one-half months and on my own at nine months.

Mom had been so lonesome for her life in Battle Lake, Minnesota, that Dad said she should go back and visit. My sisters offered to take care of me, only two years old at the time, but Mom said she wouldn’t go without her baby. Jeanette tells the story of how she and the other girls went into town and bought me “the cutest coat and cap set” to wear on the trip. It was dark blue.

Dad took the two of us off by first driving us to Minneapolis where we took the train to Dalton, Minnesota to stay with Mom’s relatives, the Fashaugs. All this time I had been fussing and crying that my hip hurt every time I walked.

Mom couldn’t figure out why I was so fretful. This just wasn’t like me. And Mom wasn’t able to get very much rest as she tried everything she could think of to make me comfortable. From Dalton, we took the train to Duluth, and went from there to visit Mom’s brothers and sisters in Mahtawa, Minnesota.

After our trip, when Dad came to pick up us, Mom said, “I never want to go back to Battle Lake again. It is not what it used to be.” Mom was exhausted, and Jeanette says she believes Mom was pregnant with my sister Doris at the time.

“Walking at nine months!” That turned out to be pretty ironic, considering the rest of my story.
Dad took me to a doctor right away, determined to find out why I had seemed to be in such pain during the Minnesota trip. The doctor moved my leg and I cried out. An x-ray of my hip showed I had Tuberculosis (TB) of the hip bone.

I was taken for treatment to Iowa City University Hospital. Jeanette remembers that when they took me there and left me, I cried so loudly they could hear me from out in the street. Mom was so thankful to soon receive a letter from a nurse informing her that I had settled down all right and that they loved me very much.

When my mother was tested, she was found to have TB as well, so she had to leave her family and go to live in Oakdale Sanitarium near Iowa City. All of our family members were tested, checking to see if they reacted to a patch test on the arm. Older members were also given x-rays. They all turned out to be fine. Even Dad had escaped the infection, thank God. 

All of our family members had to take cod liver oil – to make sure everyone remained healthy. Even all of the children who attended school with my brothers and sisters had to take the terrible-tasting stuff. According to Jeanette, this brought a lot of criticism on our family. My siblings were called “TB kids” and were teased and avoided in school.

That’s how it was back then. TB was very contagious, could cause a lot of complications, and often required harsh treatment. My family stood it as best they could. They didn’t have a choice.

When I finally came home from the hospital, I was in a body cast. This covered my entire right leg, went up under my arms, and then went down to my left knee. A bar was attached between my legs, to keep my legs separated and he hip stable. It was believed that I had contracted the TB from my mother, from having been a nursing baby.

Mervin with his sister, Jeanette, when he was in a full body cast. Photo courtesy Mervin Chantland.

Mervin with his sister, Jeanette, when he was in a full body cast. Photo courtesy Mervin Chantland.

With our mother away, it fell to Dad and Jeanette, the oldest girl at home, to take care of me on the farm. It was very hard on them. Since someone had to be up with me most of the time, Dad and Jeanette had to take urns every other night. I had to be carried everywhere, and the cast made me very heavy and clumsy to handle. I was basically a cheerful child, but I couldn’t understand why I was suddenly not able to get down and play and walk around like I wanted. And it was hard for me to rest comfortably for very long at a time.

In nice weather I was placed on the cellar lid outside so I could lie there and watch the other kids play. They tried to include me and make my life as normal as possible. Being in a cast during the summer was really miserable. It was very hot; but to make things even worse, I would itch everywhere under the cast and couldn’t scratch myself. Back in those days, the women wore corsets made with “stays,” long, flat metal pieces that kept the garments stiff. Jeanette took one of the stays from a corset and slid it up and down inside my cast to attack the itchy spots. It’s unbelievable how good that felt. 

Eventually Dad decided that they couldn’t continue to provide me with the constant care I needed. It was very hard on Dad and Jeanette to let me go, but they had become so worn down that they were afraid they were putting the health, and maybe even the lives, of all three of us in jeopardy. Jeanette still gets tears in her eyes when she ways she was afraid I was not going to live.

I was three years old when Dad hired Lou and Prof Knoll in Gilmore City, Iowa, to take me into their home and care for me. This was over 20 miles from our farm in Badger. Dad paid the Knolls $39 a month for my care and took them meat, eggs, and milk from the farm to help out.

The above chapter has been reprinted with the author’s permission from his book, “Can’t: No Such Word.


Letter to the Editor: Frine Medrano unfit for City Council

Dear Editor:

I don’t like misleading campaign literature and I find that Frine Medrano is distributing just

I feel community experience and volunteering is critical to a good council member. Frine Medrano has none of that. In her mailings she lists no volunteer or city involvement yet states she can “get the job done right.” 

I, nor anyone I know, has ever saw her or heard her name in the dozens of organizations that I belong to. This worries me that a Sacramento expert is now wanting to run for Downey City Council.  

I also saw where her major funding is coming from and it isn’t from local residents.
Most of the candidates running have a good history of city involvement -- not Sacramento involvement. I don’t want someone who knows the big-wigs in Sacramento. I want someone who knows Downey. You should too. 
 According to her own mailings, she is “home grown.” How? Just because she graduated high school here? Her material says “A lifelong commitment to public service”? Where is any commitment to Downey? Nothing mentioned at the debate either.
In my opinion, she is a poor choice to run our city. I suggest she Invest her time in our city first.
Come back from Sacramento with their lobbyists and deal-makers and invest your time here.

Then in 5-10 years she will learn all about our great city and be qualified to run for City Council.
Dorothy Pemberton