by Cindy Summers
Police reports are provided to us by the Ventura Police Department and are not the opinions of the Ventura Breeze. All suspects mentioned are assumed to be innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
Grand Theft Arrest
On July 15, the owner of Hat’s Unlimited contacted the Ventura Police Department reference their bookkeeper, 40 year old Ventura residen Andrea Galindo, who had been fraudulently cashing company checks for the past year. Her primary duties for the company was to manage the company’s finances and bills. During a company audit, they noticed significant discrepancies in their billing process and realized that Galindo was cashing checks without their permission.
The Ventura Police Street Crimes Unit began a financial investigation, and it was discovered that Galindo had embezzled over $50,000 from Hat’s Unlimited and had also fraudulently paid herself for vacation time.
On December 16, Galindo was arrested and booked at the Ventura County Jail for grand theft.
Residential Burglary and Stolen Vehicle Arrest
On November 4, at approximately 11am, the victim reported a residential burglary and a theft of two of their vehicles, a pickup truck and a motorcycle. Ventura Police Patrol officers located the stolen motorcycle and contacted the Ventura Police Street Crimes Unit VenCATT liaison to begin an investigation. On November 5, KernCATT found the stolen pickup truck outside the city of Bakersfield.
During the investigation, detectives identified the suspect, 47 year old Bakersfield resident Aaron McIntosh, as the person who entered the residence and stole the vehicles. On December 17, detectives from SCU, VenCATT and KernCATT located McIntosh in Bakersfield. They requested the assistance of a CHP K9 unit to help take McIntosh into custody.
McIntosh was arrested and transported to the Ventura County Jail where he was booked for residential burglary and possession of a stolen vehicle. A review of the Ventura County Superior Court website shows that McIntosh has been convicted of possession of a stolen vehicle and participation in a criminal street gang.
On December 5 at 9:45pm, VPD Patrol units responded to De Anza Middle School in reference to an armed robbery that had just occurred. Upon arrival, officers spoke with (2) victims who told them they were sitting on a bench in the quad area of the school when the suspect approached them, brandished a firearm and demanded their property. The suspect then fled the area with the victim’s property. Officers canvassed the area but were unable to locate the suspect.
VPD Detectives later identified the suspect as 19 year old Ventura resident Adrian Riggs. On December 18 at 10:15am, Riggs was taken into custody in the area of Seaward Ave and Harbor Blvd. Detectives executed search warrants in the 100 block of James Dr. and the 70 block of Franklin Ln. Detectives recovered evidence related to the robbery.
Riggs was booked at Ventura County Jail for Robbery. This investigation is on-going; anyone with information is asked to call Det. Reginato at 805-339-4466.
Felony Animal Abuse
On December 24, at approximately 12:30pm, the Ventura Police Department Command Center received a 911 call from a Gold Coast Transit bus driver reporting a male subject beating a dog with a lock near the Bus Depot in the 3300 block of Telegraph Rd. It was also reported several passersby confronted the subject, later identified as 26 year old vagrant Ezekiel Heterwegscheider, who then left the area on foot. Officers responded and located Heterwegscheider at a gas station near the intersection of Telegraph Rd. and Mills Rd.
During the investigation officers found several witnesses who saw Heterwegscheider attacking and hitting his dog, a mixed breed puppy, with a large master lock that was attached to a rope. He left with the dog when confronted by others waiting at the bus depot.
Heterwegscheider was arrested for felony animal cruelty. Officers with Ventura County Animal Services responded and took custody of the dog. The dog will be evaluated for injuries.
Train vs Vehicle Traffic Collision
On December 27, at approximately 7pm, the Ventura Police Command Center received multiple 911 calls of a train versus a vehicle collision. As officers arrived at the scene and started to investigate, they learned that the 79-year-old driver of the vehicle was driving south on California and had stopped on the railroad tracks when he became confused as the railroad crossing lights came on, and the crossing arms came down.
The Union Pacific freight train was traveling east on the tracks. The engineer attempted to stop the train, however, he was unable to stop it in time, and it collided with the vehicle on the passenger side front corner panel. There were four occupants inside the car during the collision. All four were taken to local hospitals to be checked out. One of the four occupants, a 37-year-old male, suffered major injuries during the collision. His status is unknown at this time. No one on the train was injured.
It does not appear as if drugs or alcohol were involved in the incident. This is an ongoing investigation and anyone who may have witnessed the collision is asked to call the Ventura Police Traffic Investigation Unit at 805-339-4451.