Mountain View Voice

For the Record - January 14, 2011

Crime briefs

Women fend off purse-snatchers

A pair of women fended off a group of men who tried to steal their purses as they were walking in front of the Hampton Inn and Suites at 390 Moffett Blvd., police said.

At about 2:15 a.m. on Jan. 9, the women, a 41-year-old from Rocklin and a 46-year-old from Visalia, were approached by three men who attempted to grab the pair's purses, said Liz Wylie, public information officer for the Mountain View Police Department.

Both women suffered minor injuries to the face and extremities in the ensuing scuffle, Wylie said. One of the women was struck in the face and fell to the ground in the struggle. She got up and ran into the Hampton's lobby for help. The suspects fled without the purses, which were found laying on the sidewalk and street when police arrived.

The strap of one of the purses was torn off, Wylie said, but nothing was missing from either woman's bag. Both victims had small cuts and scratches from the dust-up but they both declined medical attention.

The assailants were last seen running southbound on Moffett Boulevard.

Police detained two men shortly after the incident, but released them because "it all happened so fast," the two women were unable to tell whether the detainees were the would-be robbers, Wylie said.

Pair threatens man

A man and a juvenile were arrested on Jan. 6 after allegedly threatening a man with a metal pipe and a hand gun as he walked on Latham Street toward Chiquita Avenue at around 6:45 p.m., police said.

The victim was not injured.

The victim told police that he saw a group of men approaching him, said Liz Wylie, a spokeswoman for the Mountain View police. The man crossed the street, and the group began yelling at him, she said. One member of the group crossed the street and came up to the man and held a pipe in a threatening manner, getting close enough to strike.

The second assailant approached the victim, pulled a pistol on him and threatened to kill him, Wylie said.

The victim later identified two men whom police located in front of the Tropicana Lodge, Wylie said.

Police arrested 21-year-old David Villasenor of Palo Alto, charging him with brandishing a firearm and making terrorist threats. The juvenile, a 15-year-old from Mountain View, was charged with brandishing a weapon and violating his probation.

Villasenor was taken to the main jail and the 15-year-old was taken to juvenile hall.

Wylie said the police do not know why the men decided to threaten the man.

Puzzling burglary

Police are puzzling over how a burglar managed to get into an apartment located in the 2000 block of W. El Camino Real on Jan. 5.

The apartment, which was locked when its tenants left it at 9:45 a.m., was found ransacked when they returned at around 5:45 p.m., police spokeswoman Liz Wylie said.

The victims, a husband and wife, along with a friend who was staying with the couple, reported that more than 50 items of jewelry were stolen, along with an iPhone, four laptops, a Sony Playstation, a Nintendo Wii, numerous games for both systems, two digital cameras, clothing and a gym bag.

No signs of forced entry were discovered, Wylie said, and the second-floor apartment's only entrance, the door, was locked when the couple returned.

Police have no suspects and say they have no idea how the apartment was broken into, Wylie said.

Gas leak

A gas leak brought fire engines and police to Comstock Queen Court on Wednesday, Jan. 5, at around noon, according to the Mountain View Fire Department.

The emergency units were on the scene "just in case" anything went wrong as PG&E fixed the gas line, said Jaime Garrett, spokeswoman for the fire department.

Garret encouraged Mountain View citizens to check the department's Facebook and Twitter accounts for breaking fire-related news. The links to those pages can be found at the department's website, www.mountainview.gov/fire.

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