Foolish Robert Norris, 25, of 4809 Sepulveda Blvd, Van Nuys, was celebrating his last day on probation and decided to celebrate. He got drunk and went for a drive. After he was pulled over, near Balboa and Vanowen, he told the police, “You’ll have to shoot me to take me back.” Then he ran away but was subdued by four cops and taken into custody.

This is a glimpse into the good old days of Van Nuys when criminals were thin and white and had Anglo-Saxon names.

Photos: Jeff Robbins
Courtesy LAPL/Valley Times






4 thoughts on “Drunk Driver Arrested: September 23, 1963

  1. Ah yes, the simpler days! Interesting pics. Which Deli is in the background there? Kind of a trip seeing police carrying the big old revolver like that! Also, the choke-hold in the back seat! That’s a no-no nowadays! One thing that will never change is stupid criminals, though, right?! LOL!


  2. p.s. this man was already living in the beginnings of an apartment culture. The new freeways had divided up earlier neighborhoods full of responsible, home loving families and it wasn’t long before the new spaces began getting filled up with apartment buildings, built to house the denizens of angry, underpaid workers who would flood the Valley from the late 1940’s…forever-more!


    1. Yes. I checked his address, 4809 Sepulveda Blvd very near the entrance to the eastbound 101, across from the big, empty lot north of the Galleria.
      It was still called “Van Nuys” before that word was derogatory. Now the shrinking violets who live three blocks south of the Valley Municipal Building at the Van Nuys Civic Center call themselves “Sherman Oaks”.


  3. And instead of a Del Taco and a McDonalds, there was a Delicatessen at that intersection. Oh, for the days of hand-made/crafted foods gently cooked or baked over a period of time and for the customers who would happily sit by and await as the wonderful smells/the aromas of such cooking were enjoyed wafting through the air of such places…when a customer would arise early, toting a newspaper or magazine under his or her arm to read while waiting for such foods and/or a cup a coffee. Now, the smell of lard is roughly replaced by the stench of burning canola oil and the patience of those [long-ago-lost] customers is a mish-mosh of arrogant/rushed/angry workers hating on their rushed schedules, pushed by spouses to get more done, fighting traffic so bad that horses suddenly play in our dreams and sleep-deprived mental cases who want everything YESTERDAY as they grasp their steering wheels with all the energy of an overseer looking to beat up on something out of shear anxiety…good riddens to today’s activities…I’ll enjoy my last years gently reminding myself of how it used to be and of every single thing that brought a smile to my face.


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