Eastside Review Collage

A recap of some of the past week’s scenes, sightings and stories from across the Eastside.

A man living in an RV near Occidental College was taken into custody for a medical evaluation after pursuing a college worker and engaging in several other confrontations with employees in recent weeks. The man was detained by campus police and taken into custody by the LAPD early Friday evening after officials said he chased the employee who was walking home. The employee was not injured. Apparently the LAPD tried to talk to the man several hours earlier but he refused to get out of his RV parked in the 1700 block of Campus Road, prompting a police response, including a helicopter. The Occidental

A man convicted of killing a handyman in Silver Lake and cutting off his left hand before fleeing to Mexico more than a decade ago is facing up to 50 years to life in state prison. Jurors found Alan Machain, 37, guilty of first-degree murder for the Oct. 8, 2008, shooting of Cesar Valenzuela, 44, of South Gate. The victim -- who had been hired to do maintenance and repairs by the owner of a triplex in Silver Lake -- was shot at least three times and his left hand -- which was never found -- was cut off inside the home. His body was found five days later in a bathroom. The motive for the killing was unclear. The Eastsider

The winningest regular season Dodgers history was followed by a loss in a National League Division Series, as former Dodger Howie Kendrick hit a 10th-inning grand slam to give the Washington Nationals a 7-3 victory at Dodger Stadium on Wednesday. The Eastsider

An L.A. County Sheriff’s deputy acted lawfully in the fatal shooting last year of an armed-man in East Los Angeles during a struggle with her partner, according to a determination by the District Attorney. Prosecutors declined to file charges against Deputy Jennifer Romero for fatally shooting 42-year-old Ivan Pena on Sept. 24, 2018 in the 3600 block of Meisner Street in the City Terrace section of East L.A. The Eastsider

Oct. 11 marked the official last day for Eagle Rock Lumber and Hardware - one of the oldest businesses in Northeast Los Angeles, having lasted 107 years. Having been established in 1912 by the Swanson family, it been on a month-to-month lease since 2009 with the landlord, Solheim Senior Community, which bought the Fair Park Avenue property in 2006 with the idea of eventually expanding their facility. Solheim Senior Community Center is also one of Eagle Rock's oldest businesses, having been founded in 1924 as a “cozy Christian home to rest when the sun goeth down for worthy aged Norwegians,” according to historical information posted on the center's website. The Eastsider

Businesses in Rampart Village say piles of trash from the homeless population have grown particularly bad over the past year. "It looked like a pile of trash and one of our employees was actually parking a car and, you know, almost ran into—almost ran the person over because they didn’t realize somebody was in there,” said Dan Thomas, manager of Eastside Camera LA. Fox11

A man fled on foot after striking several parked vehicles with a pick-up truck early Monday morning in East Los Angeles. At least two vehicles on the 1300 block of South Atlantic Boulevard were severely damaged from the crash. At least one was overturned. The driver of the pickup truck was not immediately located. On Scene TV

The woman accused of starving her son to death will not face the death penalty. The death penalty was taken off the table at a court hearing for Verónica Aguilar, 42. Eleven-year-old Yonatan Daniel Aguilar was found dead inside a closet, weighing only 34 pounds, in their home at Rosemont and Santa Ynez on Aug. 22, 2016. Verónica Aguilar now faces a possible sentence of life without parole. She has pleaded not guilty to murder and child abuse resulting in death. KTLA

Democratic presidential candidate Beto O'Rourke paid a visit on Saturday to a Boyle Heights landmark, La Casa Del Mexicano. Congressman Jimmy Gomez and State Senator Maria Elena Durazo were on hand to endorse him, as O'Rourke spoke about gun violence, climate change and economics struggles. The Corsair

A dead body was found on the 1600 block of Edgecliff Drive in Silver Lake - identified as 46-year-old Marvin Morales. The cause of death is pending while more tests are conducted. One Eastsider reader said the body was near several A&T utility trucks parked on the narrow street. The Eastsider

A homeless man living in a Glendale Boulevard underpass said an explosive device, perhaps an M-80 firecracker, went off next to his tent, ripping a hole in the fabric and filling the tent with smoke. The man, who identified himself as Freddy, said he had been reading a book and preparing to fall asleep when he heard a large vehicle rev up and speed away, followed almost immediately by the explosion. "Thankfully our friend and his 2 cats are physically ok and we got them a new tent, but this was extremely traumatic for them," homeless advocates at Street Watch LA said on Twitter. The Eastsider

A suspect is in custody following a shooting that left one man wounded near Mariachi Plaza in Boyle Heights. The incident happened on the 1500 block of Pleasant Avenue, a residential area just north of the busy 1st Street commercial corridor. The suspect shot the victim in the leg before fleeing in an unknown direction. The victim escaped on foot and ran to a nearby hospital to be treated. The suspect was apprehended by police and taken into custody. The incident may have been related to a case of road rage but events that lead up to the shooting remain uncertain. The Eastsider

It's been almost six years since artist and teacher Joseph Gatto was found shot dead in his home up the street from the Silver Lake Reservoir. Now, court documents reveal some of the tensions and divisions in the Gatto family that preceded his death and apparently continue to this day. Gatto was considering disinheriting his daughter Nicole, the executor of his estate, and re-writing his will in the months before his death, according to a review of the documents. Los Feliz Ledger

The LAPD is reviewing its investigation into the death of actor and Elysian Valley resident Jason Murphy after being challenged by his widow and some retired homicide detectives she has hired, the L.A. Times reported. Murphy - an actor who had recently appeared in the movie “From Jennifer” - was found dead in the L.A. River near Elysian Park in September 2017. Police ruled his death accidental. But family and friends still want to know why his cellphone has never been found, why he had so many bruises, cuts and other injuries, and why witnesses said they saw a man running in fear that night. A retired LAPD lieutenant who is helping with the investigation also said LAPD investigators failed to perform basic police work, such as visiting the scene to interview witnesses.

Filmmaker and distributor Ava DuVernay had a debut party for her new screening and event space in Echo Park, with a six-week film series showcasing women and emerging artists. Located at the corner of Glendale Boulevard and Colton Street across from the Echo Park Deep Pool, the ARRAY 360 film series is being held in the newly completed Amanda Theater that's part of a three-building compound dubbed the ARRAY Creative CampusThe Eastsider

A grass and brush fire blackened 40 acres and threatened homes near Ascot Hills Park in El Sereno. The fire appeared to be mostly out by 6 p.m. Friday, but the hills continued to smolder, and smoke rose as water-dropping helicopters flew overhead. "This is a terrain driven fire (no heavy winds) that moved into heavy brush," said LAFD on Twitter. "Firefighters continue to work their way up the terrain into heavy brush and defend the threatened homes." The Eastsider

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