La Jolla crime and public-safety report: Village businesses vandalized, truck fires, robbery, more

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices at 1299 Prospect St. is pictured vandalized with spray paint the morning of June 2.
(Ashley Mackin-Solomon)

La Jolla businesses vandalized

The Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices office and National Geographic Fine Art Gallery on Prospect Street in La Jolla were vandalized by graffiti observed the morning of June 2.

At Berkshire Hathaway, windows were spray-painted to cover posted real estate listings, and the words “[expletive] Trump” were sprayed on a pillar and “[expletive] cops” on the sidewalk.

Similar invective against President Trump was sprayed on the window of the National Geographic gallery.

The vandalism occurred as sometimes violent demonstrations were held in the San Diego area and across the country in recent days in response to the death of a black man, George Floyd, during an arrest by Minneapolis police.

“It’s really sad that this happened, but it can and will be fixed and cooler heads will prevail,” said La Jolla Village Merchants Association President Brett Murphy. “Material things can always be fixed.”

In a letter to merchants, Murphy advised using the city of San Diego’s Get It Done app to report graffiti and have it removed.

In anticipation of protests coming to The Village, stores such as Ralph Lauren and Sunglass Hut boarded up their windows, Murphy said.

The Ralph Lauren shop at 7830 Girard Ave. in La Jolla was boarded up the morning of June 2.
The Ralph Lauren shop at 7830 Girard Ave. in La Jolla was boarded up the morning of June 2.
(Ashley Mackin-Solomon)

The letter to merchants also stated: “We will be monitoring social media closely and are in direct communication with SDPD. We will notify you immediately if we learn of activities concerning La Jolla Village directly. You can also volunteer as part of our communication team. If you see something (especially on social media) send a link or screenshot to and we will share with appropriate authorities.”

Two stores in the Westfield UTC shopping center were boarded up, but it wasn’t immediately clear whether it was related to the demonstrations, ongoing construction at the mall or another reason.

Arson suspected in May 25 truck fires

Arson is suspected in two truck fires in La Jolla early May 25.

The first was reported at 12:44 a.m. in the 400 block of La Canada in the Upper Hermosa neighborhood. A Ford F-150 pickup was reportedly “fully engulfed.”

The second fire was reported an hour later a mile away in the 600 block of Westbourne Street.

Metro Arson Strike Team Sgt. Rick Pechin said: “We are investigating both of the fires as potential arsons and looking to determine if both arsons are related. … Since this is an ongoing investigation, I cannot give out any other details in the case. We are asking for anyone in the public that may have witnessed the fires or have any surveillance video to contact the Metro Arson Strike Team at (619) 236-6815.”

Teen sought in Pearl Street robbery

A teenage boy may have been involved in an early-morning street robbery in La Jolla that left another person with minor injuries.

Police reported that around 2:30 a.m. May 24, a victim was punched in the face and his backpack stolen in the 600 block of Pearl Street. The victim suffered lacerations and swelling to his upper and lower lips and lacerations to his left forearm and elbow.

The assailant was described as a white male, about 15 years old, muscular with short blond hair, clean cut and about 5-foot-5.

COVID-19 numbers by ZIP code

The San Diego County Health & Human Services Agency posts an updated list at 8 a.m. daily of COVID-19 cases by ZIP code, including rates per 100,000 residents. As of June 1, ZIP code 92037 had 41 registered COVID-19 coronavirus cases and 96.3 per 100,000. The ZIP code is the code of residence, which may not be the location of exposure.

Police blotter

May 22

Petty theft: 520 block Vickie Drive, noon

May 24

Petty theft: 7600 block Girard Avenue, 5:39 a.m.

May 25

Fraud: 6000 block Greenhedge Row, noon

May 26

Vehicle break-in/theft: 700 block Arenas Street, 5 p.m.

May 27

Petty theft: 6400 block La Jolla Boulevard, 11:11 a.m.

Felony grand theft: 7800 block Herschel Avenue, 4:15 p.m.

May 28

Felony vehicle theft: 6700 block Vista del Mar Avenue, 5 p.m.

May 31

Commercial burglary: 7800 block Girard Avenue, 1:17 a.m.

Felony vehicle theft: 6100 block Camino de la Costa, 4:15 p.m.

Felony vehicle theft: 5200 block La Jolla Mesa Drive, 5 p.m.

Compiled from police and other local reports.