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Cops nab alleged sniper

Deputies say man shot windows with BB gun

Posted: December 15, 2008 9:18 p.m.
Updated: December 16, 2008 4:55 a.m.

Dusan Klein's car was struck by a BB gun projectile as he was driving on Soledad Canyon Road in Canyon Country on Friday morning.

Local sheriff's deputies arrested an alleged BB-gun sniper they believe shot about three dozen windows out of businesses and moving cars since September.

Deputies arrested Christian Polanco, 22, of Canyon Country, for allegedly shooting at moving vehicles on and around Soledad Canyon Road, said a spokeswoman for the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station.

Polanco was arrested at about 5 a.m. Saturday during a traffic stop in which deputies found a BB gun in the man's vehicle, Lt. Brenda Cambra said.

"Since September, we've received about 35 reports of vehicles and businesses reportedly damaged by BBs," Cambra said Monday.

No one has been hurt in any of the incidents.

"We arrested the person and believe him to be the one causing the vandalism," Cambra said.

Polanco will be arraigned today in Santa Clarita Superior Court.

Over the last three months, windows were shot in an area in and around Rainbow Glen Drive, between Soledad and Sierra Highway, Cambra said.

Cambra reported the arrest after complaints from one motorist who was fired at as he drove westbound on Soledad Canyon Road.

Dusan Klein, of Wildwind Road in Canyon Country, told sheriff's deputies that he was upset no detective called him to follow up on the shooting.

He said he is also upset sheriff's deputies treated the incident as vandalism.

On Friday, at about 10:45 a.m., Klein drove down Soledad Canyon Road, passed Ruether Avenue and was driving by the Parklane Estates mobile home park when he heard a loud sound.

"I thought I had a blowout so I tried to keep the car on the road," he said.

A projectile pierced and shattered the passenger window of Klein's 1996 Ford Mustang.

Klein was not hit in the shooting but contends the incident is far more serious than a vandalism.

"If somebody vandalizes my car while it's sitting in the driveway, that's vandalism. But when someone shoots at me as I'm driving - hello?" he said. "This was a serious matter and I was expecting the cops to come."

Detectives do not typically work on the weekends, Cambra explained.

The deputy who initially took Klein's report of the shooting was pulled away.

"A deputy did receive the phone call but then he went to a (sheriff's) call regarding a hand grenade," on Golden Valley Road, Cambra said.

"The one thing we should have done is phone this man (Klein) when we knew we were going to be delayed," she said.

Nothing came of the grenade call, she said.

Deputies believe the suspect is responsible for the shooting of Klein's car, Cambra replied:

"It's likely it's connected but we are not absolutely sure," Cambra said.

Anyone with information about BB gun shootings or similar incidents involving broken windows is urged to call Detective Warren Norian at 799-5810.


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