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Dirty diapers dumped across O.C. cities; man detained

September 27, 2012 |  7:41 am

Police have detained a man who detectives said may be involved in a rash of dirty-diaper dumpings in Laguna Beach and Newport Beach.

Laguna Beach police Capt. Jason Kravetz said in a news release that a 67-year-old Newport Coast man is being interviewed.

There have been reports of diaper dumpings in Laguna Beach going back to May, and Corona del Mar reported similar incidents during the past year.

Detectives have been working on the case for the past few months but got a break Monday night, according to the release. While setting up surveillance on North Coast Highway, Police discovered bags of diapers that had not yet been hit by cars and appeared to be recently dumped. While looking through the bag, an officer came upon an envelope attached to a diaper that was addressed to a medical office in Fullerton.

An employee of the office lives in the Newport Coast area, the release said.

On Tuesday night, officers watched the employee's Newport Coast home, which is in a gated community, and paid attention to movement of two vehicles in the garage, a Bentley and a Lexus.

At 10:45 p.m. the employee drove off in the Lexus, where police followed him to Laguna Beach. He made a quick U-turn near Irvine Cove and headed north. This caused detectives to initiate a traffic stop near Reef Point and Pacific Coast Highway. Once police got close to the vehicle, they spotted a large bag of diapers on the passenger seat, the release said.

The man was not arrested at the scene. Laguna Beach detectives will collaborate with Newport Beach investigators to merge the cases and present them to the Orange County district attorney's office for prosecution of Health and Safety Code 117555 — illegal dumping.

Previously, the dirty diapers had been reported on the southbound lanes of North Coast Highway between Irvine Cove and Emerald Bay during the spring and summer.

—Joanna Clay, Times Community News