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Courageous Citizens Receive Awards from D.A.

October 14, 1998|EDWARD M. YOON

Nine Valley residents and a Los Angeles man each received the Los Angeles County district attorney's Courageous Citizen Award during a luncheon at Porter Valley Country Club on Tuesday.

Presented by the district attorney's office and Northridge/Chatsworth Rotary Club, the award recognizes individuals whose assistance and heroism has led to the arrests of criminals, Dist. Atty. Gil Garcetti said.

"Courageous citizens heard the cries for help and rather than look the other way, they offered assistance," Garcetti said.

The Courageous Citizen honorees are:

* Santa Clarita resident Mohsen Lavizani, who detained a man attempting to burglarize the home of Los Angeles City Councilman Joel Wachs in Studio City on May 21.

* Mario Garcia of Mission Hills and Arleta residents Jacqueline Perez and Jose Serenil, who on May 2 chased a purse thief at a Van Nuys supermarket. They recovered the purse and called officers, who arrested the thief.

* Sherman Oaks residents Robert Cole and Neil Leary, who on May 16 pursued and captured two minors after they were seen snatching the purse of a senior citizen crossing the street on Hazeltine Avenue in Sherman Oaks.

* Larry Weber of Hidden Hills and (posthumously) Thomas Nelson of Woodland Hills, who witnessed a residential burglary suspect fleeing the scene with stolen goods in January 1997. Weber identified the suspect in a police lineup; Nelson obtained the license plate number of the getaway car. Christiane Nelson of Woodland Hills accepted the award on her late husband's behalf.

* Elisa Stern, a Shadow Hills teacher's aide, whose "detective work" led to the arrest of a convicted sex offender who had exposed himself on several occasions to students of Mountain View School in Tujunga.

* Christopher Morton Marcovici of Los Angeles, who provided assistance to a driver injured in a two-car accident on the northbound Golden State Freeway in Newhall in November. Marcovici detained the other driver, who was on probation for a prior offense for driving under the influence.

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