• Safety a Priority for Pasadena Dispatcher in Triple Murder


    PASADENA (CNS) – A Pasadena police dispatcher who helped persuade a triple-murder suspect to surrender, ending a roughly 90-minute standoff, said today she was focused on protecting the safety of officers and other people at the scene.

    Police released portions of the Saturday conversation between dispatcher Diane Marin and the barricaded suspect, later identified as 44-year-old John Izeal Smith. On the tape, Marin can be heard trying to convince the suspect that police simply want him to surrender.

    “They (officers) don’t want you to get hurt,” she told him. “They just said that, too, I heard them tell you that. They don’t want you harmed.”

    Asked about the call today, Marin said her “main concern was the safety of the officers and anyone out in the street.”

    “I’ve never received a call from someone who had just committed a crime, especially of that magnitude,” she said. “Mainly, I was concerned that this person still had weapons, or if they did or they didn’t, I was concerned what they were planning to do to themselves or to the officers.”

    She said when she picked up the call, the suspect immediately confessed to murder.

    “That’s the first thing he said,” according to Marin. “He said, ‘I killed someone.”‘

    Smith surrendered to crisis negotiators at 6 p.m. Saturday after opening fire on police officers and barricading himself in a home. Police said about 40 shots were fired by the suspect, but police never returned fire.

    Police said they were still trying to determine what prompted the shooting, which began at about 4:20 p.m. Saturday in the 1700 block of North Summit Avenue. Police initially said the shooting may have been the result of some type of landlord-tenant dispute.

    Police also said Smith had no criminal record and legally purchased the weapons used in the shooting.

    Maria Teresa Aguiar, 59, was shot to death outside the home where Smith was barricaded, according to police and the coroner’s office. A man described as a good Samaritan who was rushing to Aguiar’s aid was shot in the chest and also died.

    Coroner’s officials have not released his name, but he was identified in media reports at 31-year-old Joseph Hernandez Uribe.

    After Smith surrendered, Aguiar’s father — 91-year-old Luis Fernando Aguiar — was found dead inside the home, police said.

    Smith remains jailed in lieu of $1 million bail.

     

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