Sunday, July 19, 2015

Even the Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives John Boehner is getting on Arcadia's Case

Photo by Terry Miller
I'm telling you, nothing is going right for Arcadia's city government these days. City Council meetings are filled with loud and angry residents, there is a Brown Act lawsuit going down, McMansions have become about as popular there as walking pneumonia and Councilmember John Wuo has a wooden pirate's chest filled with GemCoins having a cumulative cash value of right around $1.96. But that is only after you take them to a metal recycler somewhere down on Arrow Highway for proper weighing.

Here is how The Arcadia Weekly sheds its light on the current Arcadia denouement (link):


Blaming Obama for the drought is typically the kind of dumb things both Republicans and Democrats like to say about each other these days. Neither side seems to realize just how sick this country is of hearing from them, either. They apparently think we're all idiots, just like they are, and desperately want us to hang out with them.

But Boehner going after Arcadia of all things? Over a drought yard sign? That is pretty astonishing. I wonder what he thinks of Water Wise Owl?

The City tells the Hildreth's to take down their sign. Should they?

They must have Jeff and Taryn Hildreth voodoo dolls down at City Hall. With lots of colored pins stuck in each of them. But here is my question, when is it any business of the city what signs you choose to put on your property? That certainly sounds like a freedom of speech issue to me.

Apparently the city is very upset. Here is a picture of the sign that has 'em seeing red.


It is telling that while Sierra Madre City Hall cannot find the energy or time to investigate lawn-loving residents who allow precious water supplies to run down the streets and into storm sewers, they did get on this case tout suite. It also makes you wonder what their real priorities are, or just how afraid they might be of obstreperous residents.

Here is what the Hildreths received recently from imported Pasadena development bureaucrat Vincent Gonzalez of Planning and Community Preservation fame.


Bizarre. Maybe Jeff and Taryn should call the American Civil Liberties Association.

Or something.

sierramadretattler.blogspot.com

81 comments:

  1. That whole place is an eye sore, ugly ugly ugly, I don't give a hoot what he writes on his house, I'll bet his neighbor loves seeing it, every freaking day. There really is no accounting for taste, either architecturally or neighborliness.

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    1. It's apparent that you never get out of your house and walk around town. Out of all the structures on East Montecito, I wouldn't consider the Hildreth's to be anything but unfinished. It is far from ugly. It is well maintained, but unfinished due to the City's retaliation. The landscaping shows what can be done in a drout situation. No lawn, beautiful plants and an oak tree.

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  2. Jeez I imagine this home is the biggest eyesore in Sierra Madre. I'd rather live next door to a nicely upkept McMansion

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    1. I think you can. Many McMannies have a small servant shack around the back. You could do yard work in exchange for rent.

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    2. I was a houseboy in my younger more attractive days. I got free rent in the pool house and all I had to do was please my landlord,look pretty,and tidy up a bit. Those were the days.

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    3. People that live in McMansions will not build shacks on their property a ranch style 3 bed 4 bath Mother in law residence in back is more like it.

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    4. Then where do you servants live?

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    5. The bar/basement?

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    6. Judging by 6:45's remarks, I'd say yes.

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    7. 7:52 - did you work for a guy named Robert?

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    8. 8:17 No I was too old, 17+1/2 at the time.

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    9. 7:32
      It is apparent that you either work for the City or do not like the Hildreths. They easily could have torn down the 1910 cottage, but chose to preserve part of Sierra Madre's history instead. The only thing ugly is the lawsuit, filed by the City, in which they have not been allowed to finish. Even uglier is the fact that by the time the trial is over, the City will have spent close to $1,000,000 in legal fees, trying to run the Hildreth's out of town.

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    10. Perhaps they should fill their hole. I do not work for the city,your personal attack is uncalled for,you are correct in one respect although I do not know these self centered people I would not want them as neighbors.
      They belong in the desert far from sane people. OBEY THE LAW or change it. They will find no support for a law that allows digging a hole under a shack without permits.

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    11. 9:16
      Why don't you become more informed before you make accusations. The only one NOT OBEYING the law would be the City Manager and the City Attorneys. Everything is public information. You can either go to the Superior Court website or sterlingoak/wordpress.com to become educated before you speak.
      I have seen their permits. There is nothing illegal about their structure. Because they do have permits and the City has not followed the law, we the tax paying citizens are going to be paying them a ton of money. I wish the City would have dealt with the Hildreths fairly and spent the money on the sidewalks, streets, rusty water pipes, etc rather than spending the money on attorneys.

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    12. There are definitely two sides to this story. The Hildreth's allegedly "lost" the documents they filed with City Hall. They may have given them to Council member Goss's invisible residents who are 100% for property rights, and who cares about the neighbors.

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  3. If the priority of the city is between cleaning up these peoples illegal eyesore and residents having too green a lawn then I am onboard with the city.Thank God I've had good neighbors for at least 60 years in Sierra Madre.

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    1. Actually the city wants to fine you for your green lawn. Didn't you know?

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    2. Actually they paid me $1,000.00 to remove my lawn. I am aware of fines for overuse of water and I think that is an important part of our water conservation plan. I also think getting rid of an illegal,unsafe,eyesore and menace to the neighborhood is more important and the city should and is acting in the interests of the community to prioritize its removal

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    3. This all goes to trial in September I believe. I wonder how some people will deal with all of this if the Hildreths win.

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    4. 7:58
      My question to you...if it was truely illegal, don't you think the City would have owned the Hildreth's years ago? It is apparent by the amount of time it has taken for this lawsuit to go to trial and the money the City has thrown at this lawsuit that they don't have a case. I know many of the Hildreth's neighbors, and they consider them good neighbors. If you don't believe me, just ask them.

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    5. It's not a popularity contest. I'm not 7:58.............

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    6. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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    7. The courts decide in September. If the Hildreths win the city will have to raise taxes again to pay a very huge settlement. I suspect Sierra Madre will be close to being uninsurable as well.

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  4. If you have an interest in this case, the legal and more serious comments are here:
    https://sterlingoak.wordpress.com/

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  5. In my opinion, what the Hildreth's sign represents is that they are sticking up for their rights and the rights of others. Judging by their actions they are not guilty. A guilty person does not bring attention to themselves.

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    1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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    2. And a certain kind of martyr.

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  6. The city is asking them to reduce the size of the signs.
    The horror, the horror.

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  7. Hey where did his graffiti go on the west side of the house go? It was so becoming, so hip and retro.

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  8. Just drove by the Hildreth's there is no sign! It has been removed.
    Looks like they have caved in to the City's demands.

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    1. Good to see you are keeping busy. Your wife needs you at home to help with the cleaning, though.

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  9. All of the nasty name calling aside, the real issue is how badly this situation has been handled over the years. Anything can happen during a trial, and a good lawyer can make those deciding the case feel sympathetic to the family that fought city hall and might lose their home. If this case goes south for the city it will cost the taxpayers millions. It never had to get to this point. Are you ready to pay for that mistake?

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    1. The city has screwed this up, and that's for sure, no matter what the Hildreths have screwed up. We will all have to pay them for the city's incompetence. The Hildreths have a piece of paper signed by a kid, Matt Marquez, who was elevated from Developer Servicing Department clerk to director of the department at one critical time in this case when the previous director left. Oops.

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    2. 10:17
      I vaguely remember Matt Marquez. I don't recall that he was here very long. Do you work in the Planning Department? How would you be privy to "a piece of paper signed by a kid"?

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    3. Anyone familiar with what is going on in this city knows about this situation. That you do not speaks loudly of your ignorance about what is going on here.

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    4. 10:17 here. I saw the Marquez permission paper online on what was once the Sterling Oaks site. I haven't looked for it since, but when I saw it, I thought "Oh-oh."
      I had to interact with Matt a few times. He was a nice kid, and didn't have a clue about running that department.

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  10. City residents have been paying for City Halls mistakes for years. Her is an explample of current and possible up comming city hall legal costs 1) defending illegally charged water fees 2) defending the chineese developer 1 Carter 3) defending UUT tax if city hall chooses not to put it on April 2016 ballot 4) hildreaths law suit 5) ongoing police union law suites. Why should the residents continue to pay for these BS law suits.

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  11. The City runs a vendetta and we tax payers have to fund the personal feud.How incompetent.

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  12. If my neighbor put up a sign of this size I'd be on the phone daily to the city to get it taken down regardless of content. Good job, City of Sierra Madre, in this instance at least.

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    1. 10:29
      It's called Freedom of Speech and look how many people have died to protect that right. I am an American and I support them and consider them good neighbors. They did not pick this fight.

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    3. It never should have gotten to this point. But because we have a city govt run by people who do not live here we ended up in this legal mess. A City Mngr or a Planning Dept head who actually is from here could have handled this informally. Instead City Hall went to DefCon5 and we ended up in a situation that has put this community in considerable legal jeopardy.

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    4. Agreed. Better that they should make a flyer and distribute it, and have a place to hang it outside that thing over the sidewalk. Isn't that city property?

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    5. 11:00 I am also an American I am not willing to die for the rights of digging a dangerous cave under a house and putting up illegal signs all over a house and trouncing the rights of my neighbors.Maybe you should go to Kersting Ct. shirtless and hold up crazy signs and scare children.

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    6. No child can be frightened now. They have already seen you.

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    7. I know you are but what am I? :\

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    8. A blog troll.

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  13. If we had a city govt run by people who live here things would not be done fairly and by the rules. We would revert to the cronyism that we had 25 years ago when all that mattered was who you knew.

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    1. Cronies are not so good. The little martinets running the place now are worse..

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  14. I'm trying to find the docs to look through, but the gofundme doesn't produce anything, and neither did the case number for the superior court.

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    1. All information can be accessed by the courts City of Sierra Vs. Hildreth Case # GC046442
      I believe sterlingoaks.wordpress.com has even more
      I have try the city website but that does not provide any information.
      The court date is September 28, 2015

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    2. Thanks 12:48, but the worpress site is just like a blog, and there are no documents. The superior court site found no matches with that case number.

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  15. It seems the Hildreths have sharpened the stick in which to poke the city once again. First an illegal hole under the house and apparently neighbors property, then a deck over city property, then graffiti on the illegal deck. What next? I'm not sure who some of the neighbors the Tattlers talked to, but those I have talked with believe the sooner the better to get rid of the ugly eyesore the Hildreths have created .

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    1. 12:48 "Spreader of miss truths & lies".
      I think that if the hole was under the neighbors property there would also be another lawsuit against the Hildreths. There is NOT! Not to mention that the neighbors just moved in. The property would not have sold, nor would title insurance have been issued if that were the case.
      The "illegal" issue will be settled by a jury, where the odds of the City winning are nil. The Hildreth's have tried to remove the deck you mentioned. The City demanded that they do so, but then would not allow them to remove it. The deck extends the same distance as the trellis at the old VFW and the overhang at Stats. Why have they not been sued?

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    2. Possibly because neither a trellis,or an overhang are decks? Decks are to walk on and have parties and BBQ a trellis is for vines and an overhang is a roof.

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    3. 2:30
      The lies continue...
      Not that I'm aware of NO BBQ, NO Parties...
      Try again

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    4. Try a dictionary I'd do it for you but you would call me names
      look up deck
      look up trellis
      look up overhang
      It's quite simple

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  16. WOW - We Arcadians didn't think Sierra Madreans could get so exercised over a public dispute between residents and the city. We were told (by our Imperial Arcadian Overloads) to believe only Arcadians could be rude, impolite and lacking the respect due to imperial city officials when we exercise our rights and cry foul. Nice to see Sierra Madreans exerting strong opinions on both sides of the issue.

    If you've got some bile leftover to spew, please attend the next Arcadia city council meeting on 7/21 and fire away at any of the 5 sitting ducks lined up. Although just 3 richly deserve abuse, there's no need to be surgical. A verbal shotgun blast at the entire council will make you feel better and will be good political theater.

    Suggested topic #1: Where the hell does John Boehner get off calling Arcadians "liberal environmentalists"? That turncoat. No more GemCoins will be sent to support the RNC until he formally apologizes. The truth is we hate Oak trees and Sycamores and we are never happier than when a few more fall under the dozers driven by mansionization maniacs. Tell the council to step up their efforts, raze more ranch homes and the stupid trees - scorch the earth and build more mausoleums. Hail to the Dozers! We have our reputation to protect.

    Suggested topic #2: Where the hell do cities like Bell, Industry, Temple City, West Covina, San Gabriel, Pasadena and the rest get off grabbing all the headlines on corruption and cronyism? Arcadia deserves to be recognized for it's efforts, albeit modest and still growing as they are. What other city can claim to elect real estate professionals and hand them the keys to the city (zoning code)? What other city can boast about electing a former (and current?) self-proclaimed MLM Emerald-Class scammer to the city council? What other city can boast a mayor who publicly supports Ponzi schemes, run by his long-term real-estate partner, solicits money from developers for travel to China to extort more money for more mausoleums, and then has the temerity to claim he knows nothing or will put the money in the general fund. People this is political pandering in it's highest form. It deserves recognition. And if that isn't enough, we've got Roger Chandler. Who is Roger Chandler? He's Gene Goss x 1000. Chandler's vapid, fetid, fact-less remarks deserve a "hall of fame" unto themselves. So please, call out the Arcadia City Dept of Marketing for being asleep at the wheel. There is propaganda gold, or amber, to be reaped and other cities are hogging the spotlight.

    Suggested topic #3: Citizen lawsuit over unjustified exemptions claimed under CEQA, the Calif Enviro Quality Act? What are you waiting for Arcadia - time to wake up and sue their asses right back. Ask for millions in damages for this libelous besmirching of the reputation of Peacock Heaven. CEQA doesn't apply to Arcadia! Neither does historical preservation. While your at it, tell Arcadia to sue the LA Conservancy for giving the city an F. Sure Arcadia razed the Anokia mansion in 1999 to make room for high density homes. But we haven't (yet) claimed imminent domain to dozer the Arboretum and the precious queen anne cottage of "da plane" fame. But we've been thinking about it and we just might do it if you keep pissing us off. Or if you funnel enough cash to us. Just think how may mausoleums we could stuff onto the Arboretum and county park!

    Please show up, bring your bile, support the Arcadia Imperial Council and denounce all who stand in their way.

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    1. There are some fights that have been going on for so long in Sierra Madre they're like community heirlooms. They get passed down from generation to generation. Sadly this one could end in September in Superior Court. But we'll find other things, though.

      Thanks for the great post!

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    2. 2:17, I am glad for Arcadia that you all have finally started to fight, but you know nothing about Sierra Madre if you think we haven't been in a life and death struggle with over-development for the last 25 years. Do you think we stayed small by accident?

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    3. Sierra Madre puts Arcadia to shame!
      We are just smaller so the corruption lasts longer
      Good Luck Arcadia
      Be prepared for the same abuse as the Hildreths
      Their lawsuit is working on five years.
      How sad for them.

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  17. Take that back 2:44. No one shames Arcadia but Arcadia!

    Once our dozers have finished off the Highlands, you're next. We've got enough GemCoins and amber to keep the dozers running for decades.

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    1. GemCoins are backed by amber mines, inferior Sierra Madre dogs. Some have bugs in them!

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    2. I'm gone to inform my littlee brother, that he should also visit this weblog on reular basis too take updated from latest reports.

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  18. RRRRRrrrrr (the sound of dozers reving up)

    Regarding Eminent Domain ... don't think Arcadia won't annex Sierra Madre once the Highlands and Arboretum fall. We've got the best city attorney money can buy - he works for Best, Best & Krieger. Tony Montana would be proud!

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    1. Considering the hapless nitwits Tay, Wuo and Chandler have made of themselves lately, I'd say your shyster is much more Tony Soprano than Tony Montana.

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    2. Ouch! You just offended all hapless nitwits.

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  19. Lookie here, if the City had just let the Hildreths go forward with their goofy wine bar project years ago it would be in the rearview mirror by now. With the high closure and bankruptcy rates of new businesses this totally inane homegrown artsy drink yourself into spending money on second rate art would have failed within the year. Nosiree, Bob. Mishandle their applications, fail to document inspections, sic the lawyer dogs onto the Hildreths through multiple changing of the City's executive guard and ignore all attempts to settle amicably. Then nail a harassment notice to their foreheads and declare the situation a public nusiance.

    Way to go, Sierra Madre.

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    1. If the city loses this one it will go down in history as one of the greatest blunders ever here.

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  20. Will Arcadia come to a planning committe or city council meetings when we need them? More gets done with the power of numbers. I have been there for you guys. We have a lot in common: corruption in government, over-development, etc. I was there when Wuo called the audience racist. Chandler-I have no words for him, but he is like Goss in a lot of ways. So let's both help each other and fight the good fight!

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    1. I was there, too, and agree with you - Chandler is Goss x 1000! I also agree with lots of the posts - personally, I've been fighting for our small town of Sierra Madre for the past 25 years that I've lived here. Take a look at what numbers can do - drive down Orange Grove and notice the two teardowns under construction. The abomination on the Arcadia (south) side looks to be 10,000 sq ft. I believe at that City Council meeting I attended, Chandler denied that any ceqa laws have been violated, and the owner should be able to build that
      monstrosity that resembles a hotel. The north, Sierra Madre, side looks like it will be one story, tasteful, and not blocking their neighbors view. But, Arcadia, it never ends. I'm glad you are finally trying to do something about it.

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    2. Chandler isn't quite as ignorant as Goss.

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  21. Hello from Arcadia,
    "Greatest blunders", please don't get me started. We invented blunders. And we're still perfecting them.
    After years of Bob "let 'em axe the Oak trees" Harbicht and Roger Chandler and John "GemCoin" Wuo, Arcadians voted them back. Harbicht was termed out so we added their little pal Sho "me money" Tay. Blunders? We did it to ourselves!
    Hey Sierra Madre, who's the hapless nitwit now? We are. Arcadia's proud peahens.

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  22. Name the time and the place. Preserve Sierra Madre - hurrah!. Save the Arcadia Highlands - hurrah!

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  23. ‘Emergency situation’ shuts down Sierra Madre Police Department star news r n something about a grenade

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  24. where is that horn when you need it!!!~

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  25. http://www.insidesocal.com/sgvcrime/2015/07/19/emergency-situation-shuts-down-sierra-madre-police-department/

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    1. UPDATED: ‘Emergency situation’ briefly shuts down Sierra Madre Police Department
      Posted on July 19, 2015 by Brian Day
      SIERRA MADRE >> The Sierra Madre Police Department ceased handling calls for about an hour Sunday in response to an “emergency situation” at the police station, reportedly after someone brought a grenade to the facility. Few details were initially available regarding the incident, which began about 4 p.m. at the police department, 242 W. Sierra Madre Blvd. Sierra Madre police announced via Facebook that police services, both emergency and non-emergency, were being handled by the Monrovia Police Department, “Due to an emergency situation at the station.” Sierra Madre police could not be reached for comment. Officials did not confirm initial reports that the incident stemmed from someone bringing a grenade to the police station. City officials announced the station has safe and police services returned to normal shortly after 5 p.m.

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  26. I realize Arcadia and Sierra Madre have been at odds lately over water but did the APD refuse come to our rescue? They say Duarte PD is in charge o fS.M.right now

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    1. Where did our cops go? Did they run away?

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  27. SMPD back in service! Wow that was a close one.

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