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Palo Alto Weekly

News - March 30, 2012

News Digest

Man shot in leg in East Palo Alto Friday

A car passenger was struck in his leg by one or more bullets in East Palo Alto last Friday night, March 23.

The gunfire occurred at 9:14 p.m. in the area of Newbridge and Menalto avenues; police were notified by the department's Shotspotter system, which detects the sounds of gunshots.

When officers arrived, they found evidence that one or more firearms had been discharged but could not find a victim or witnesses, Det. John Norden stated in a press release.

Minutes later, however, Palo Alto police officers stopped a vehicle carrying the adult shooting victim and others, who were headed to the hospital, and contacted East Palo Alto police.

A preliminary investigation revealed the wounded man had been in the rear seat of the car as it traveled south on Newbridge. At the intersection of Menalto Avenue, an unknown assailant or assailants shot several rounds at the vehicle, striking it and injuring the passenger in the leg, Norden said. The driver sped from the scene and headed to the hospital.

Norden said the injury was not life-threatening.

Police are seeking witnesses or persons with information regarding this shooting. Detective John Norden can be reached at 650-798-5954, by calling East Palo Alto Police Dispatch 650-321-1112 or by an anonymous email to epa@tipnow.org.

Former Menlo College manager faces theft charges

The former post office manager of Menlo College is facing charges of credit card and identification theft after an investigation by the Atherton Police Department concluded that she had stolen three credit cards sent to two students and a nonprofit organization operating on the campus.

Debra Lynn Blaylock, 55, of Santa Clara, was arraigned on felony charges in San Mateo County Superior Court March 22 and remains in custody on $100,000 bail.

The case came to light with the discovery by the nonprofit's CEO that a credit card mailed to the organization but never received had been used multiple times in Santa Clara and San Mateo counties, according to the San Mateo County District Attorney's Office.

The CEO was able to obtain a video of the person activating the card and recognized her, the DA's report said.

The police located surveillance video at three businesses in which the person using the credit card was identified as Blaylock, according to the DA's report.

After Blaylock's arrest, investigators found credit cards that had been issued to two Menlo College students, the report said. She was charged March 10.

A preliminary hearing of the case is set for April 12.

Palo Alto burglars ditch loot in Mountain View

An alert resident who witnessed a residential burglary in progress called 911 Thursday morning, March 22, enabling Palo Alto police to chase the pair of thieves and recover the stolen property from their abandoned getaway car in Mountain View.

Palo Alto police responded to the 911 call at about 9:40 a.m. regarding a burglary in the 3000 block of Louis Road, between Clara Drive and Colorado Avenue, in Midtown.

The resident saw a man in his early 20s, about 5 feet 9 inches tall, with a husky build, run out of her neighbor's side yard carrying property. The suspect, who was wearing a dark hooded sweatshirt and jeans, got into a white 1994 Lexus ES-300 four-door sedan, driven by a second person.

The resident immediately dialed 911 and gave the descriptions to police as the car drove away westbound on the 800 block of Clara Drive, near Ross Road.

Arriving officers discovered the suspect used a pry tool to open a locked window in the back yard, after accessing the yard through an unlocked side-yard gate. Police checked the home and noticed that a big-screen television had been stolen.

Officers from the Mountain View Police Department located a vehicle fitting the description abandoned in the parking lot of Google, at 1945 Amphitheatre Parkway in Mountain View. The thieves had fled on foot.

Palo Alto detectives are conducting a follow-up investigation to determine if the suspects are connected to any other recent daytime residential burglaries.

Anyone with information about the incident can contact the police 24-hour dispatch center at 650-329-2413. Anonymous tips can be emailed to paloalto@tipnow.org or sent via text message or voicemail to 650-383-8984.

— Sue Dremann

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