In brief: Boston Marathon security to swell past 3,500
FRAMINGHAM, Mass. – The number of police officers patrolling this year’s Boston Marathon will be doubled to more than 3,500, one year after two bombs exploded near the finish line, killing three people and injuring more than 260.
The enhanced police presence is part of a strengthened security plan detailed Monday by public safety officials as they prepare for the April 21 marathon.
Spectators who plan to attend the marathon are being strongly discouraged from bringing backpacks, rolling bags, coolers and other large items, and are instead being asked to carry personal items in clear plastic bags. Anyone who does bring a bulky bag will be subject to search, officials said during a news conference at the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency’s bunker in Framingham.
The new guidelines for spectators are similar to rules for runners made public several weeks ago by the Boston Athletic Association.
Man faces charges in severed head case
LOS ANGELES – Los Angeles County prosecutors have charged a man with murdering his live-in boyfriend and dumping his severed head, hands and feet near the Hollywood sign two years ago.
Police announced the arrest of Gabriel Campos-Martinez, 38, on suspicion of killing Hervey Coronado Medellin, 66, of Los Angeles. Campos-Martinez was arrested in San Antonio on Sunday with the help of local authorities and was being held on $1 million bail pending an extradition hearing.
Campos-Martinez was charged Monday with one felony count of murder with malice aforethought in the slaying of Medellin, who had been dating Campos-Martinez and was living with him at the time of his disappearance, Deputy District Attorney Bobby Grace said.
A felony complaint alleges Medellin was killed on or around Dec. 27, 2011. A coroner’s report found that he had died of asphyxiation and ruled it a homicide.
Two women discovered Medellin’s head while walking dogs on a trail in Griffith Park on Jan. 17, 2012.
Accused shoplifters will remain in jail
CHICAGO – The heads of a suburban Chicago family accused of stealing $7 million in goods in a decadelong, multistate shoplifting spree will stay in jail pending trial because they are flight risks, a federal judge ruled Monday.
Branko Bogdanov, 58, and his wife, Lela Bogdanov, 52, allegedly operated in tandem with their daughter to pilfer merchandise and sell it on eBay. They were arrested last week at their home in a wealthy Northbrook neighborhood.
Prosecutor Renato Mariotti said the husband and wife emigrated from what was then Yugoslavia and are in the U.S. illegally. Both, he said, had arrest records.
He accused Branko Bogdanov of misleading officials by claiming he’s $28,500 in debt. In fact, Mariotti said, he owns his $1.3 million house and 12 vehicles, including a Lexus and Corvette.
All three family members face the same single count of interstate transportation of stolen property, which carries a maximum 10-year prison term. None has entered a plea.