|FHRA's Warm Winter Meeting 2005
great turnout of more than 80 Franklin Hills neighbors filled the
meeting room at King Middle School for the FHRA’s winter meeting, but
that wasn’t the big news of the night. |
|LAPD senior lead officer Al Polehonki announced that just before
coming to the meeting he and fellow SLO Sam Salazar had arrested the
suspect in four recent area bank robberies. The sharp eyed SLO’s were
just leaving El Arco Iris restaurant when they saw a man who matched
the picture and description on an internal LAPD flyer. One of the banks
allegedly robbed by the suspect was the CalNational Bank at Vermont and
Prospect where the FHRA has an account. Bank Manager Dennis Ead was
pleased when informed by FHRA treasurer Bruce Carroll that the suspect
in the January 24th robbery had been arrested. Polehonki
and Salazar’s commitment to our neighborhood is evidenced by the fact
that they came to our meeting and then went downtown to handle the
liaison with the FBI.
Officer Sam Salazar discusses area crime as Matt
Levy (right), Councilmember Tom LaBonge's
new field deputy for the Franklin Hills area listens
intently. Levy's office is downtown at City Hall
|In addition to keeping a sharp eye out for faces on wanted flyers
Polehonki and Salazar also reported encouraging crime stats for the
Franklin Hills area. In January there were no murders, aggravated
assaults or sex crimes, 1 burglary and surprisingly only 1 car breakin
reported, but Polehonki added “I know there was a few more than that”
and he urged everyone to report crimes to LAPD. There were 2 robberies,
one of them a mailman making his rounds on Lyric Ave, 4 car thefts and
16 arrests for felonies, misdemeanors and traffic crimes.
winning performance featured Nicky Thole (left) and Brenda Varvarigos
of the Camarillo Wildlife Rehab. They were presented with a
certificate of appreciation by Capt. Wendell Bowers of LA City
Department of Animal Services. Since last winter’s FHRA meeting
Camarillo Wildlife has helped save over a thousand animals picked up
City Animal Services officers.
|Wildlife specialist, Officer Gregory Randall, was also back with
tips for keeping wild critters at bay. Coyotes can travel 25 miles in a
day, love to tunnel under fences, but hate noise…so, he advised, make
plenty to scare them away, and if you see someone feeding a coyote
please report it to the LA Dept. of Animal Services.
|Thole showed off a screech owl rescued after being hit by a car.
The owls can camouflage themselves to look like trees and maybe a bit
too much like asphalt. Thole reported that the possum that starred at
last year’s meeting had been released back into the wild last
Also in the critter file FHRA Board Member George Grace reported that
nearly $2000 has been donated to set up wildlife drinkers in Griffith
Park to help keep animals there and not in our yards..
|FHRA President Charley Mims looks on as Councilmember Tom LaBonge and the community greeted the new
Principal at King Middle School, Charlene Hirotsu, She said King was
the “most beautiful” school she’s been at in her 30 year career,
promised to work with the community on traffic problems and to
eradicate on campus graffiti within an hour.
|She explained the kids
are, “not as scary as they look…when you get to know them everyday they
are beautiful kids.”
LaBonge started his remarks, just before leaving for a trip to the
Superbowl, by noting the Philadelphia Eagle’s head coach was a Thomas Starr King
|The Councilman also answered critics of his support for a measure
to increase the LA City sales tax to hire more police. He noted the
half cent increase would only add about $3 to the cost of a washing
machine so fears that people would travel to Glendale and other
surrounding cities to save money probably wouldn’t materialize. He also
pointed out the greater safety would aid businesses and their customers.
There were also brief reports from Sharon Romano of the Hollywood
Beautification Team about area cleanup and beautification projects and
FHRA President Charley Mims about progress to make traffic on our
In addition to a head full of useful info some meeting goers were
rewarded with door prizes that ranged from books about LA to Laemmle
movie theatre passes and Starbucks gift cards. And everyone had a
chance to meet new neighbors and renew old friendships.