Local Briefs

Dogs, Drones Nail Burglar

Santa Monica Police used dogs and a drone to sniff out a homeless man named Murphy wanted for burglary.

An employee of a business in the 1600 block of 19th street called police early on May 20th, saying that he could hear someone on the roof. At 3:25 AM, SMPD Officers responded. “The employee also mentioned that the business was burglarized the night before,” writes Lt. Rudy Flores, SMPD PIO.

“When officers arrived on scene, they observed an individual on the rooftop carrying a stolen item. Upon seeing the officers, the male quickly retreated out of sight. The male suspect, later identified as Christopher Reid Murphy, a 27-year-old homeless White male, was given several commands however refused to comply,” Flores continued.

“A perimeter was quickly established and with the assistance of a Police K9 and the Santa Monica Police Department’s drone, also known as Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) Teams, Murphy was located hiding inside a storage room. Murphy was taken into custody and booked for Burglary and Resisting Arrest. Murphy is also on formal probation for burglary.”

Anyone with additional information pertaining to this incident or individual is encouraged to contact the Criminal Investigations Division 310-458-8451 or Santa Monica Department Watch Commander at 310-458-8427.

Pistol Packing Mama

5/17: A fight between a homeless couple over a stroller, ended in gunfire and criminal charges for one woman.

Just after noon, Santa Monica Police Department (SMPD) Officers responded to a shooting in the alley of the 2400 block of Ocean Park Blvd.

Witnesses told them that the victim was in the alleyway pushing a stroller filled with personal property, when a vehicle drove past him.

That vehicle suddenly reversed and hit the victim's stroller causing all the items to fall out and scatter onto the ground.

The driver of the vehicle, later identified as Tarra Kenay Sheffield, got out of the car. The 27 year old Sheffield walked to the victim, while he (victim) was gathering his belongings.

The two exchanged words. Suddenly Sheffield pulled out a pistol and fired one round into the ground next to the victim. Sheffield then got back into her car and quickly drove away.

On May 18, 2021 SMPD patrol officers located Sheffield in her vehicle at 7- Eleven (630 Wilshire). Sheffield was taken into custody without incident. Detectives located a loaded 9mm handgun, with no make or model, inside of the vehicle.

May 20, 2021, the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office filed charges against Sheffield for her involvement in a shooting. She was charged with Assault with a Firearm and being a Felon in Possession of a Firearm.

Venice Homeless Garner Int'l Media

Venice residents are tired of seeing the once famous, though eclectic, boardwalk turned into one large homeless encampment. And they’re talking to the media this week.

For example, the UK Daily Mail writes: "On Sunday Crocodile Dundee star Paul Hogan, 81, warned the homeless away. 'This is my house, not yours,' he wrote on a note he posted on the gate of his $3.5 million Venice Beach home. Hogan complained that he is homesick and desperate to return to his native Australia but doesn't want to go through two weeks Covid quarantine. I'm like a kangaroo in a Russian zoo, I don't belong here,' he said.

Venice residents generally assert that homeless people commit many crimes, including shootings, fights, fires and drug use. Most of them deny that they want to do anything but sit in the sun, same as wealthier, working people. Economics simply forces them to do it publicly.

The boardwalk used to be full of tourists, vendors underneath canopies, with tourists from Europe and Asia. But not anymore. On my Thursday morning walk, I pretty much saw only homeless people.

Fox reporter Lawrence Jones, who was in Venice Beach on Wednesday and saw the situation first hand, spoke to both residents and members of the homeless community who set up tents in the area.

One homeless man told Jones that he lost his child and fiancé in a drunk driving incident and started resorting to drugs, noting that he injects himself with "clean" needles around 32 times a day.

"Are you afraid that one time when you shoot up it’ll be the last time?" Jones asked. "No, I’m not afraid," he responded. "If it happens that I die, maybe I can finally see my kid."

Another homeless man told me he has been living on Venice Beach on and off for approximately five years. He said his name was “Agent F.” He claims the homeless residents of the area actually try to clean it up. He claimed that living under the stars allows him to connect with his ancestors, archaic humanoids, who also lived outside all the time.

Agent "F" says he is 44 and has travelled the world. He showed me a storage locker a friend rents from a local landlord. He says they do art installations and sometimes sell their craftwork. He says he is completely happy living outdoors, and wants to live that way the rest of his life.

While I was there, a truck from the Los Angeles Dept of Parks and Recreation drove by, with bags of tracks produced by the residents. “You see? We’re the ones who gathered all that trash to fill those bags.”

Authorities feel torn beside progressive goals, good intentions, and a demand from people who’ve paid millions to acquire homes by the beach, that the area be cleaned up. And that the homeless be taken away.


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