News

Three busted for drugs, guns by Menlo task force

Search in East Palo Alto turns up 'large quantity' of cocaine base

Three East Palo Alto men watched their fortunes take a turn for the worse on March 3, as police officers and FBI agents pounced.

A search of three locations in East Palo Alto turned up a "large quantity" of cocaine base, powdered cocaine, money, and four guns, including a MAC-11 machine pistol, according to Detective Sgt. Eric Cowans of the Menlo Park Police Department's narcotics enforcement task force.

East Palo Alto residents Jeron Jones, 23, Ricardo Alvarez, 30, and Rodney Powell, 40, were arrested and booked into San Mateo County jail.

According to Cowans, all three men have prior records for drug-related crimes.

The FBI's involvement was standard procedure for task-force investigations, police said.

— Sandy Brundage

Comments

Like this comment
Posted by Sonny
a resident of College Terrace
on Mar 4, 2011 at 3:16 pm

Maybe the EPA PD should offer them some job training.


Like this comment
Posted by Hmmm
a resident of East Palo Alto
on Mar 4, 2011 at 7:27 pm

Sonny, wouldn't that be redundant? They had jobs & just got down-sized.


Like this comment
Posted by Frightened Citizen
a resident of Greenmeadow
on Mar 4, 2011 at 8:46 pm

Four guns and a Mac 11 Machine Pistol...
I am not sure that I feel any safer after the rash of car breakins and armed robberies in peoples driveways. Why doesn't the task force go into EPA and ferret out these gangers, rather than offering them Jobtraining jobs at Mc donalds, theyre going to keep robbing rather than go for a minimum wage job.


Like this comment
Posted by Blake
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Mar 5, 2011 at 8:36 am

Referring to the earlier article about offering job training to gangsters and thugs, I have no issue with government funded programs that aim to discourage young children on the plight of gangs and substance abuse.

As for young adults and grown men, well, you should have learned by now, and, you should not be tapping into much needed tax dollars to show you the light. The only message they need to hear is that they will be relentlessly pursued and prosecuted for their crimes.


Like this comment
Posted by Sonny
a resident of College Terrace
on Mar 5, 2011 at 10:56 am

Blake,
Have a heart. These guys were right in the process of turning their lives around. If only they could have turned their automatic weapons in for paper hats and name tags, we could all have breathed a sigh of relief.


Like this comment
Posted by Hmmm
a resident of East Palo Alto
on Mar 5, 2011 at 12:52 pm

Frightened Citizen, why are you so stressed? Gangmembers are constantly watched, warned & arrested. The job training was one aspect of many used to get them off the streets. And as you obviously ignored, the job training offered was part of a "get your act together or else" event which was in large part telling them that law enforcement knows what they're up to & the community isn't supporting the gangmembers.

The driveway armed robber has been caught.

Car break ins scare you? Think about that. That happens everywhere & anywhere there are cars.

Put it in perspective.


Like this comment
Posted by Blake
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Mar 5, 2011 at 2:10 pm

A good, balanced perspective Hmmm. Couldn't agree more with that. What I resent personally about the job training is that it sounds like tax dollars are being used in part to fund the program. As I said earlier, I have no issue with governments funds spend on trying to reach children with an anti-gang, anti-substance message, but not on young adults and grown men who should know better.

It was no mystery to them I'm sure how to succeed in life. They chose to be gang members and thugs, and it was there choice alone that put them in this position. Society already funds a public school system which I'm sure that most of these gang members had access to. Here in the Bay Area they're better than most. Community colleges are plentiful and relatively affordable. Job training programs are readily available, and if one sees fit, they can join our armed forces as an option. Our country still provides more opportunities than obstacles.

Bottom line, we do not need another publicly funded program to try and help people who have been already given an opportunity to succeed, and failed to take advantage of it. Programs for people at this stage in their life should be handled strictly at the private level through volunteers, faith-based groups, etc. I'd rather see us use the financial resources on anti-gang education for young children, or toward law enforcement to pursue and prosecute those for their crimes.


Like this comment
Posted by Hmmm
a resident of East Palo Alto
on Mar 5, 2011 at 5:28 pm

Blake, you really are concerned about your tax dollars when this training program isn't in your country or city, & such a huge portion of our tax dollars go to corporate bailouts & a war which is making corporations rich? Like I suggested to the other poster, have some perspective. Who are the "we" to whom you refer? You mean you & your ilk? How much of your individual tax dollars fund things you disagree with? It's odd, imo, that you're spending the time/energy to express an opinion on this small job training offer.

The bottom line is that the gang members were put on notice w/an offer of assistance, slim as that is. You really have no idea if they've been offered chances to succeed before. You don't know them, their histories, or even who they are. Maybe it'll work, maybe it won't, but the monies have already been spent. I've worked w/many CBOs & they do make an impact.

The law enforcement efforts, in this case, make me wonder - all the intelligence, time, money & energy spent on just 3 arrests? These guys weren't the big fish. It's wonderful to get them & their weapons off the street, but these stories are also red herrings because it doesn't clarify what's really going on, & of course, contributes to the bias against EPA residents that already is so prevalent in your town.


Like this comment
Posted by Sonny
a resident of College Terrace
on Mar 5, 2011 at 6:34 pm

Hmmm,
Car break ins occur everywhere there are cars. Murders occur everywhere there are people. What's the point? But, the real question should be..who are committing these acts? Are they young adults who had little to no guidance during their formative years? If so, why should productive members of society bear the burden of these poor lost souls? Their parents, teachers, and religious leaders failed. As far as the idea that the gang bangers have been put on notice, please get real. They (the gang bangers) are laughing all the way to your car or apartment because they now know that law enforcement is impotent if this is all they can muster.


Like this comment
Posted by Hmmm
a resident of East Palo Alto
on Mar 5, 2011 at 8:50 pm

Sonny, you didn't get my point. My point was that indeed, car burglaries happen everywhere & it's not reason to live in fear, like that poster seems to be doing from their words & their handle.

I don't know who's doing the car break-ins - I'm not a cop or psychic. My comments were directed towards Blake. Law enforcement isn't impotent w/gangs & this certainly isn't all that they can muster. The thing w/these 3 arrests is that it likely has little impact & these guys were not breaking into cars, so you need to keep your stories straight. Some of the gang crackdowns in this area in the past 5 years have been effective because a multi-pronged approach has been used & they cops are figuring out, based on results, which prongs sting the most.

To answer your question about "bearing the burden" - we all do because that's how a capitalist democracy is structured - we pay taxes & taxes go to various needs. Poor lost souls? Do you mean gang members or corporate welfare recipients or Wall St. execs? Wait, they're all gang members - some wear suits & some don't, but they're all criminals.

I'm not very scared of gangs breaking into my home or car - it doesn't take a lot of brains to figure out I'm not a good target.


Like this comment
Posted by Nora Charles
a resident of Stanford
on Mar 6, 2011 at 12:05 am

Hmmm,

But not being a "good target" is irrelevant. Shouldn't we should all be concerned about these thugs? And the Wall St. execs, corrupt and despicable as they are, cannot be compared to street thugs in terms of public safety. They're a whole different kettle of fish.


Like this comment
Posted by Sonny
a resident of College Terrace
on Mar 6, 2011 at 6:53 am

Nora Charles,

Thanks for the post. Indeed corporate execs have caused worldwide damage, but as you say, street thugs and gang bangers cause irreparable emotional and, sometimes, physical damage because those crimes are committed up close and personal. I would be willing to bet that anyone who has been carjacked or robbed in their own driveways now has a different outlook on crime.

Hmmm,
As far as bias towards EPA, when the vast majority of these perps are caught, where do they usually reside? That's not bias, those are just facts.


Like this comment
Posted by Hmmm
a resident of East Palo Alto
on Mar 6, 2011 at 2:42 pm

Nora, we need to be concerned about both, actually - the Wall St execs have effected us at home. The street level thugs such as these busted don't affect most peoples' everyday lives unless they're unsavory lives or they're your neighbors. I've lived in EPA for years & that's how I know this. There are many criminals who commit crimes amongst themselves & don't really affect law abiding folks. It's the ones who target law abiding folks w/various crimes that we're all concerned about, but even then, we can minimize our fears by being realistic.

Not being a good target is highly relevant, as cops will always tell you. I'm not a good target at home, which is why I've remained quite safe. I was more of a target when I lived in PA, actually. Homeowners in PA can be less easily targeted than renters, for the most part.

Sonny, you still don't know what you're talking about because you are a bit of a slave to media reports.


Like this comment
Posted by Sonny
a resident of College Terrace
on Mar 6, 2011 at 5:36 pm

Hmmm,

Homeowners can be less easily targeted than renters? Why is that?
I admit that I rely on media reports and all of them say that most of the perps captured in PA for violent crimes are from EPA. Sorry, but that's the way it is. Don't get lulled into a false sense of security thinking that you'll never be a target. Just ask the elderly man on Morris Drive who made the unfortunate mistake of opening the door when the doorbell rang in the middle of the afternoon. He was beaten, robbed and duct taped to a chair. I'll bet he was glad he was not considered relevant target. By the way, the criminals were caught and were from EPA. I would rather be a slave to the media, than take advice from someone with their head buried in the sand to facts. We all need to get real about violent street thuggery.


Like this comment
Posted by G TOWN
a resident of East Palo Alto
on Mar 7, 2011 at 10:30 am

The drive way armed robber was caught and lives in palo alto.YEAH cant stop it now,breeding thug life has leaked into your neck of the woods.what prevention will you result to because, police really not stopn nuthn.caught after the fact means nothing but,more tax dollar being wasted.these people lives are being spared when thier robbed at gun point.you know it will get ugly one day.people protect and serve thier hoods better than any agency i know.i guess i only can speak for my past.PEOPLE PROTECT YOUR SELF, BE SAFE AND NOT SORRY AND THAT WILL WORK.Who cares about the guns and this and that you think it stop anything.no it continues its a so called culture please dont judge my people for making the choices they make some of them belive they can build a foundation on this choice.I PRAY FOR US CHANGE YOUR WAY OF THINKING.


Like this comment
Posted by Hmmm
a resident of East Palo Alto
on Mar 7, 2011 at 11:21 am

I have large, strong, loud dogs, neighbors close at hand & excellent lighting, so criminals steer clear of me. I'm also vigilant & utilize the private security that is nearby & call the cops when needed. Maintaining a good relationship w/the cops is also helpful.

My point about renters vs. owners is that owners can do pretty much whatever they legally want to to secure their homes & renters can't. Owners are more likely to have dogs, alarm systems & the correct lighting needed to deter crime. Criminals want to act fast, not draw attention & then get the heck out of there.

The Morris Dr. crime was terrible, disturbing & very dangerous. It's of course easy when you've lived somewhere for years to not expect bad guys on your doorstep. He was the perfect target, unfortunately.

Sonny, it's fine to be a slave to the media, just so you know you often miss out on the larger story & other interesting stories altogether, including the good stuff about good people who make a difference. The elitist, typical PA attitude is one that many, many people joke about & that's no accident. It's one that's always bemused me & I was raised in PA.


Like this comment
Posted by Sonny
a resident of College Terrace
on Mar 7, 2011 at 12:46 pm

Hmmm and OG

Thanks for cluing me in. Be aware of your surroundings, don't be preoccupied and above all everyone ...Be safe.

Peace


Like this comment
Posted by Hmmm
a resident of East Palo Alto
on Mar 7, 2011 at 3:48 pm

Thanks so much, Sonny. You, too. No one wants to live in fear, but we have to have that balance of care, alertness & respect for privacy.

I recall some years ago heading to a PA ATM that was well lit, on a major street, & it was late at night, but I had one of the dogs w/me. Right after I was there, a woman was pistol whipped & robbed there. Literally, a few minutes after me. I suspect they were watching for awhile & picked a victim. Predators think differently than the rest of us & we have to remember that. When I was in kindergarten, Hell's Angels lived next door to my school. They kept an eye on all of us - this was back in the days of kids walking in groups to school. I used to wonder who the big men w/the funny beards & clothing were & my mom told me years later ;-)


Like this comment
Posted by Sonny
a resident of College Terrace
on Mar 7, 2011 at 4:56 pm

The scars of others should teach us caution.


Like this comment
Posted by Sonny
a resident of College Terrace
on Mar 7, 2011 at 4:56 pm

The scars of others should teach us caution.


Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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