Illegal Alien Pleads Guilty to Rape, Murder of 84-Year-Old-Woman
An 84-year-old retired psychiatrist, Dr. Gladys Conrad, thought she was safe in her Carlsbad retirement home.
Alejandro Avalos Fernandez, 34, pleaded guilty Thursday to first degree murder and other felony charges. With the guilty plea he acknowledged to raping and killing Dr. Contrad in 2001.
Conrad’s body was found Sept. 1, 2001, inside her apartment at the Carlsbad by the Sea Retirement Community on Carlsbad Boulevard. An autopsy showed signs of sexual assault. Subsequent investigation turned up a DNA match and he was arrested three years later when DNA was collected in connection with the attempted rape of another elderly woman in Los Angeles.
Fernandez, a Mexican citizen, then fled to Mexico but was arrested Jan. 23, 2009, in Mexico City. Because he fought extradition it took 13 months for him to be returned to San Diego County. He originally faced charges that made him eligible for the death penalty.
As a condition of extradition, local prosecutors agreed not to seek Fernandez’s execution, making him eligible for a possible sentence of life in prison without parole if convicted. Mexico, which does not impose capital punishment, has traditionally resisted extraditing prisoners who could face the death penalty.
Under the terms of his agreement with prosecutors, Fernandez will be sentenced to 34 years to life in prison at a Jan. 6 hearing in Vista Superior Court.
Richard Barron, Candidate for City Council, Arrested, Charged with DUI
It was all politics . . . that was the complaint of Escondido City Council candidate Richard Barron in response to his July 23 arrest on suspicion of driving under the influence.
An investigative reporter for the North County Times found a record of his arrest, following an anonymous tip. The arrest was not made public by the Police Department or the district attorney, and was not discovered until the North County Times looked into the tip.
Barron, who is charged with a misdemeanor, has been a frequent critic of the city's traffic-safety checkpoints. He claims that because of his criticism the police had him targeted.
Police Department spokesman Craig Carter rebutted Barron's assertion that the arrest was politically motivated.
Carter said Thursday that officers are never told to make arrests or pull vehicles over without probable cause, and that the probable cause in this case was Barron's vehicle straddling a lane line, not any campaign sign.
Carter also said that Barron was arrested because the arresting officer determined he was impaired based on two factors: straddling the lane line and failing a field sobriety test, which typically includes reciting the alphabet or walking in a straight line.
Barron was arrested on South Escondido Boulevard near Felicita Road on Friday, July 23. The trial is scheduled for Nov. 29.
Barron, who ran unsuccessfully for council in 2008, is among seven candidates seeking two open seats on Nov. 2. The other candidates are Mayor Lori Holt Pfeiler, Councilwoman Marie Waldron, commercial developer Jim Crone, former Councilman Ed Gallo, public policy analyst Jason Everitt and office manager Carmen Miranda.
Five Arrested in Prostitution Sting
On Friday, October 8th, members of the Escondido Police Department’s Special Investigations Unit and Special Enforcement Team conducted an undercover sting operation directed at prostitution violations committed in the City of Escondido. Undercover officers posed as “Johns” and were approached by the suspects who solicited money in exchange for sexual acts.
As a result of the detail, two arrests were made for solicitation with the intent to commit prostitution and three arrests were made for loitering with the intent to commit prostitution.
The arrested persons information and charges are as follows:
All five suspects were issued citations as a promise to appear in court at a later date.
Carlsbad School Shooting Spree Injures Two Students
On Friday, October 8th, Carlsbad Police dispatchers received several 911 calls of shots heard in the area of Kelly Elementary School. Prior to officers’ arrival, callers were able to see a subject on the campus firing at children on the playground.
When officers arrived, they found the subject, 41-year-old Brendan L. O’Rourke being detained by three civilian witnesses who had intervened. Steven Kane, Mario Contreras and Carlos Partida, of Chula Vista, were on the campus working in a construction area when they heard shots and kids screaming. The three men ran around the building and observed O’Rourke near the school, firing rounds with a handgun. As the three approached the shooter, he turned and ran towards his vehicle, which he had parked near the playground, along the east side of the school. As Kane and Contreras chased O’Rourke, he appeared to be attempting to reload his handgun.
Partida got into his own vehicle and drove around the school to the area where the suspect had parked. As Kane and Contreras chased the suspect over the playground fence, Partida struck the suspect with his truck, knocking him to the ground. The three good Samaritans then held O’Rourke down and removed the weapon from him.
O’Rourke was transported to the Carlsbad Police Department for questioning. He complained of pain to his back and neck and was transported for treatment and released for booking. O’Rourke was booked into the Vista Detention Facility for six counts of Attempted Murder and numerous violations involving weapons.
San Diego County Sheriff Bomb Squad personnel responded to the scene to clear the suspect’s vehicle, which had a propane tank adjacent to it. In addition, the suspect had taken a small gas can onto the playground. Bomb personnel found no explosive devices or hazardous materials in or around O’Rourke’s car. It is believed that O’Rourke possessed the single handgun.
Initial press releases indicated that witnesses had observed O’Rourke in a Halloween outfit, carrying a jack-o-lantern and these have been determined to be false. It was also relayed that he had been yelling obscenities about the President of the United States and this was also false.
The two victims were admitted at Rady Children’s Hospital with through-and-through wounds to each of their right arms. No other injuries were reported.
Illegal Alien from Vista, Statutory Rape
A 20-year-old Vista man pleaded guilty today to misdemeanor statutory rape for having consensual sex with a 15-year-old Encinitas girl he met online, who said she had been raped by three men in an attempt to hide the tryst from her parents.
Jose Adrian Cano was immediately sentenced to time already served in custody and three years probation, said Deputy District Attorney Katherine Flaherty.
Escondido Police Conduct DUI Checkpoint