Prowling Suspect Evades Authorities; PCR Locked Down

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Palm Crest Elementary School was locked down after a man with a neck tattoo reading “Wendy” was spotted around noon Tuesday trespassing in a garage in the 1600 block of Alta Canyada Road.
The suspect, who was described as a Hispanic man in his mid-30s, was wearing an orange utility vest and hat, according to Crescenta Valley Sheriff’s Deputy Eric Matejka, who was among the law enforcement personnel involved with a containment set up in response to the prowling call.
In the end, the man avoided detection, Matejka said, adding that the lockdown was lifted after a few minutes and nothing was reported stolen.
“At one house, one resident confronted him in the garage and he took off running,” Capt. Chris Blasnek said. “So we set up a little area containment to see if we could find him. We even had the helicopter overhead for a while but we did not locate him.”
Blasnek said the man had been knocking on doors in the neighborhood, asking people if their electricity was off — and that there is “crystal clear” visual evidence of him doing so, recorded by a resident’s Ring.com video system.
“I’m not even sure he knew he was on it at first,” Blasnek said. “So we’ll compare with other cities, and some other information we have. Hopefully we’ll have an arrest shortly and I’ll be able to report some good news.”
Sgt. Alan Chu said the image would be released publicly once it’s been confirmed by the resident who encountered the man.
Matejka said the department also will be able to search its database for anyone with a “Wendy” tattoo, “so we can narrow our hunt, hopefully.”
PCR’s lockdown was instituted out of an “abundance of caution,” according to La Cañada Unified School District Superintendent Wendy Sinnette.
“After hearing helicopters patrolling overhead, PCR went into lockdown,” she wrote in an email. “The District Office contacted our Resource Officer, Deputy Matejka, who informed us that students were not in danger, and who assisted us in getting the official ‘all clear’ from the Sheriff’s Department.”
Principal Karen Hurley alerted families about the lockdown via electronic message, Sinnette wrote.

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