Rolling Hills is served by the Lomita Station of the Sheriff's Department.
In an emergency situation, please call 911. For all other purposes, the Lomita Station can be contacted at 310.539.1661.
Lomita Station of the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department
26123 Narbonne Ave., Lomita, CA 90717
An open letter from Lomita Station regarding the "Safer at Home" order.
I rarely post on Nextdoor, however, as a prosecutor for the past 37 years, I feel that it is important to share my perspective for your consideration. As a Peninsula resident who has lived on the Hill for decades and frequents the Promenade, I share the feelings expressed by many regarding this violent, brutal murder and regarding the need to do all that we can to increase public safety in our community. I am only going to address one issue related to this murder that has come up frequently both here on Nextdoor and on the FB Live webcast. That issue relates to my neighbors' request for more information about this murder and about the person who committed it. Clearly it would be helpful if this murderer was already incarcerated so that everyone could feel safer that this killer could not harm them or others. Unfortunately, that hasn't happened--yet. So now, people understandably want to know more about this murderer that would help them be "on the lookout" for this person and thereby avoid becoming another victim. Providing public information about an uncharged murder, however, causes a HUGE problem for the future successful prosecution of that murder. This is particularly true of murders in which there is no immediately clear and obvious suspect. For example, it makes it more difficult to successfully prosecute a murderer based on the statements of witnesses if details about the crime, as described by the witnesses, were previously publicly disseminated, instead of being details that only the murderer and/or murder witnesses could have known. Also, if law enforcement provides public information about the murderer and the suspected motive, it makes it much more difficult for them to apprehend this killer. We are not the only ones who are following the news about this murder--the killer is following the news as well. Even though I am curious, I have not asked for nor received any additional information from law enforcement about this crime. We should support our law enforcement in their efforts to refrain from saying anything publicly that could tip off the murderer and make it more difficult for investigators to find and arrest this person. Rather than trying to get all the information that the investigators know about this crime, I believe that it is more important to make sure that the homicide investigators are able to do their job without compromising their investigative leads so that this murderer is not only caught, but also is successfully prosecuted--without receiving any reversal of his conviction on appeal. To me, it would be far worse to have a cold-blooded killer released back into our community after being acquitted due to such compromise issues, knowing that this person could never be re-tried for the murder because of double jeopardy. The Peninsula is "safer" than many other SoCal communities only in the sense that we have a much lower crime rate. However, no community is completely safe. Sometimes horrible crimes still happen to people who did nothing wrong. I feel that I have gained much vicarious experience from reading numerous police reports; I am much more aware of my surroundings everywhere I go. We all would like to know more about this heinous murder and about the killer who committed it. Hopefully that information will come to us shortly, after the investigation is completed. In the meantime, I think that it is important for all of us to be more aware and vigilant in observing everything around us and to report to the Sheriffs anything that appears suspicious. In so doing, we can help to prevent ourselves and others from becoming crime victims.
Consistent with our promise to the public of full and timely disclosure, the Sheriff’s Department has released the following update about the Susan Leeds homicide investigation:
On 05/17/18, Investigators arrested Cherie Townsend for the murder of Susan Leeds. The facts of the case were presented to the District Attorney’s Office which worked with LASD Homicide Detectives through the weekend reviewing all the associated documents known at this time. Prosecutors are requesting additional follow up to be conducted as they continue to work closely with the LASD Homicide Detectives. On 05/21/18, Cherie Townsend will be released from the custody of the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department. As an update to the LASD press conference on Friday 5/18/18, the general public has come forward and provided additional information in this
case which has been followed up on appropriately.
The focus of our investigation has absolutely not changed. The investigation has progressed. It is not unusual for prosecutors to request additional information and we are confident this homicide case is moving forward. Investigators also had the opportunity to obtain key statements from a suspect and collect physical evidence that is now undergoing rigorous forensic examination at the LASD Crime Lab. We share the same goal as the District Attorney’s Office and that is to achieve a successful prosecution that brings resolution and justice for Susan Leed’s family. Our Homicide Investigators still believe that this remains an isolated incident in a historically safe community. As a measure of reassurance, the LASD has increased visibility of their deputies in Rolling Hills Estates and remains in close contact with the city on further developments in this case.
The community still plays an important role. We are asking anyone who was at the Promenade Shopping Center in Rolling Hills Estates on May 3, 2018 between 9:30am and 12:30pm to contact LASD Homicide Detective Quintero or Detective Austin at 323-890-5500.
- Homeowners Guide to Better Home and Neighborhood Security
- Residential Burglary Prevention Tips
- Rolling Hills Crime Prevention Tips - Harden Your Home Against Burglary
- March 14, 2016 - LASD Special Bulletin, Wanted for Residential Burglary
- March 12, 2014 - Residential Burglary
- October 30, 2014 - LASD Special Bulletin, Person of Interest
- March 7, 2013 - Hovland update, photo
- February 25, 2013 - Rolling Hills Identity Theft Suspect Pleads Guilty
Overview on the Trespass law, and how it is enforced
Below are two laws from the California Penal Code (PC), and five City of Rolling Hills Municipal codes that address trespassing. It is important to know that these violations are misdemeanors, with the exception of 602.8 (a) PC, which is an infraction. These law being misdemeanors, a Private Persons Arrest is necessary unless the Deputy Sheriff was actually present, and witnessed the trespass occurring.
602.8 (a) is only citable when the violation occurs in the presence of a law enforcement officer or Deputy Sheriff. If the person leaves the property prior to a Deputy arriving, the person cannot be cited for the violation.
Here are examples of Trespassing, and how the Sheriff will enforce the applicable laws:
Example 1. Mr. Rozas arrives home to find a man, unknown to him, walking around his property. Mr. Rozas yells at the man, telling him to get off his property. The man ignores Mr. Rozas, so Mr. Rozas calls the Sheriff’s Department. Note: Mr. Rozas has no fencing, or signs prohibiting trespassing.
A Deputy Sheriff arrives on scene, and contacts the suspect and Mr. Rozas. Due to the fact the suspect is still on scene, and on the property, the Deputy arrests him for 9.40.010 Rolling Hills Municipal Code (see below).
Let’s make one change to the above scenario. The suspect, seeing the Deputy’s patrol car approaching, exits the property. The Deputy arrives and contacts Mr. Rozas. Mr. Rozas points down Crest Road, and tells the Deputy, “There he is, he left when he saw you.” The Deputy explains to Mr. Rozas that a private persons arrest would be necessary due to the fact the Deputy was not present during the violation. Mr. Rozas agrees to the Private Persons Arrest procedure. The Deputy contacts the suspect and drives him back to Mr. Rozas, where Mr. Rozas advises the suspect he is under private persons arrest for 9.40.010 Rolling Hills Municipal Code (see below). A small amount of paper work is completed with Mr. Rozas, and the suspect is taken to Lomita Sheriff’s Station for booking or the suspect is cited in the field.
Example 2: A woman who does not live in Rolling Hills continuously avoids the gate attnedent when entering the city, in order to walk her dogs.While walking up Portuguese Bend Rd. from the main gate, the gate attendant yells out to the woman, “Ma’am, you are not allowed to be in the city without permission!” The woman looks back, then continues on with her walk.The gate attendant is busy with a line of cars to check in, and does not have time to call the Sheriff.
The next day, the same woman re-appears, and the same scenario unfolds. This time, the gate attendant is able to call the Sheriff. The Sheriff arrives, and takes the guard’s statement. The gate attendant on two occasions warned the woman she was not allowed on the private roads, without permission. The Deputy finds the woman within city limits, and arrests her for 9.40.020 Rolling Hills Municipal Code. Due to the fact the Deputy was not present to witness the attendant advise the woman of the offense, he MAY elect to have the guard make a Private Persons Arrest. However, based on the guard’s statement coupled with the fact the woman was detained within city limits, the Deputy has the authority to make the arrest.
602.5 (a) Penal Code – Unauthorized entry of property: Every person other than a public officer or employee acting within the course and scope of his or her employment in performance of a duty imposed by law, who enters or remains in any noncommercial dwelling house, apartment, or other residential place without consent of the owner, his or her agent, or the person in lawful possession thereof, is guilty of a misdemeanor. This applies to someone within a structure.
602.8 (a) Penal Code – Lands under cultivation, enclosed by fence or posted; entry without written permission; punishment; exemptions:
Any person who without the written permission of the landowner, the owner’s agent, or the person in lawful possession of the land, willfully enters any lands under cultivation or enclosed by fence, belonging to, or occupied by, another, or who willfully enters upon uncultivated or unenclosed lands where signs forbidding trespass are displayed at intervals not less than three to the mile along all exterior boundaries and at all roads and trails entering the lands, is guilty of public offence.
(b) any person convicted of a violation of subdivision (a) shall be punished as follows:
(1) A first offense is an infraction punishable by a fine of seventy-five dollars ($75).
(2) A second offense on the same land or any contiguous land of the same landowner, without the permission of the landowner, the landowner’s agent, or the person in lawful possession of the land, is an infraction punishable by a fine of two hundred fifty dollars ($250).
Rolling Hills Municipal Code: 9.40.010 - Unauthorized remaining on private property prohibited. No person shall remain upon any private property, including but not being limited to private roads within the City, after being notified by the owner or lessee or other person in charge thereof to remove therefrom.
9.40.020 - Unauthorized entrance on private property prohibited. No person, without the permission, express or implied, of the owner or lessee or other person in charge of private property, including but not being limited to private roads within the City, shall enter upon such private property after having been notified by the owner or lessee or other person in charge thereof to keep off or keep away therefrom.
9.40.030 - Violation—Penalty. Any person violating any provision of this chapter, upon conviction thereof, shall be punishable by a fine of not to exceed five hundred dollars or by imprisonment in the County Jail for a period of not to exceed six months, or by both such fine and imprisonment.
9.44.020 - Giving false information to security officers prohibited when. It is unlawful for any person to willfully give false information to, or to deceive by any other means, any guard or security officer employed by the Rolling Hills Community Association of Rancho Palos Verdes, for the purpose of gaining permission from said guard or security officer to enter upon or use the private roads in the City.
9.44.030 - Violation—Penalty. Any person violating any provision or failing to comply with any requirement of this chapter shall be guilty of a misdemeanor. Any person convicted of a misdemeanor under the provisions of this chapter shall be punishable by a fine of not more than five hundred dollars or by imprisonment in the County Jail for a period not exceeding six months, or by both such fine and imprisonment.
right, its probably not and call the Sheriff's Department immediately. DO NOT WAIT!!!
Going door to door. This is especially suspicious if, after a few houses are visited, one or more of the individuals goes into a back or side yard. They may be "casing" for a house to burglarize. Waiting in front of a house especially if nobody is home could be considered suspicious.
Persons who act strange or unusual could be ill, injured, or under the influence of drugs/alcohol. In all three cases, notify dispatch.
Person running especially if something of value is being carried. The person may be fleeing the scene of a crime.
A person who is carrying property. This depends on the circumstances. For example, if it is at an unusual hour or in an unusual place, the individual may be leaving the scene of a robbery, burglary or theft.
High volume of foot traffic to and from a residence on a daily or very regular basis.
- IRS Scam Calls Please be aware of phone calls falsely claiming to be from the IRS and even having a caller ID that identifies them as the IRS. The callers also appear to know the last 4 digits of the call recipient's social security number. Please be advised that the IRS will first contact you by mail, not by phone or email. Please contact the IRS directly if you are worried the call is real. The IRS can be reached at 800-829-1040 or go to irs.gov. To file a complaint with Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration please call 800-366-4484 or go to tigta.gov or FTC at 877-FTC-HELP or go to ftc.gov/complaint.
- *72 Phone Scam Advisory Do Not Dial *72. The increasing pattern was noticed by deputies with the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, who have been receiving an increasing number of phone calls from people who have been scammed. The scam begins by the victim caller receiving a call from a person claiming to be a deputy. This imposter tells the victim that one of their family member's has been incarcerated or involved in an accident. The imposter then informs the victim caller that their family member provided the victim caller's name as an emergency contact. The victim caller is then instructed to call a number that begins with *72 (Example: *72-323-555-1212) to get the information they will need. When the victim caller hangs up and dials the number provided, they are told they have a wrong number . However, since the victim caller used the prefix *72 to initiate their last phone call, they have just automatically forwarded all their incoming calls to the scammer's phone number (These include collect calls from inmates who want to avoid paying for collect calls). The billing for these forwarded calls goes to the victim caller until they turn off call forwarding on their phone (usually by dialing *73).
- Can you hear me/Are you the homeowner Phone Scam. The idea is to ask the victim a simple question so that they respond with "Yes". The scammer then records the response and uses it to authorize charges on credit cards, bills, and more. This is because many companies today use voice-recognition system for customer service, which scammers then "hack" with the voice recording. Scammers can also ask to press a button on the phone which is how they found out if the number is active. When receiving an unknown phone call please do not respond and not press any buttons on the dial pad. Here are some more questions the scammers tend to lead with: Are you the lady of the house? Do you pay the household phone bill? Do you pay the household bills?
- Business Owners Need to be Aware of Phony Fire Inspectors