The following is taken from the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office media report for the Santa Ynez Valley patrol.

Those appearing as "arrested" have only been arrested on suspicion of the crime indicated and are presumed innocent.

Tuesday, Nov. 16:

INCIDENT — After stopping a vehicle for expired registration about 2:10 p.m. at Baseline Avenue and North Refugio Road in Santa Ynez, deputies found the driver did not have a license and three misdemeanor arrest warrants had been issued for the passenger.

Both were issued citations and were released at the scene.

INCIDENT — Deputies contacted a driver they said exhibited symptoms of being under the influence of a narcotic about 7:40 p.m. at the Chumash Casino Resort and allegedly saw a methamphetamine pipe in his vehicle.

He was cited for suspicion of being under the influence of a controlled substance and possessing paraphernalia for smoking a controlled substance and was released at the scene.

ARREST — When deputies spotted a man who appeared to be falling in and out of consciousness in his vehicle at the Chumash Casino Resort about 9:35 p.m., they discovered a felony warrant and six misdemeanor warrants had been issued for his arrest.

The man, who was not identified, was placed under arrest on the warrants. A subsequent inventory search of his vehicle allegedly revealed a bag of suspected methamphetamine, so he was also arrested on suspicion of possessing a controlled substance and was booked into Santa Barbara County Jail.

INCIDENT — Deputies allegedly spotted a bag of suspected methamphetamine in plain view in a woman’s vehicle about 4:15 a.m. at Chumash Casino Resort, and a check with security officers revealed she had been banned from the casino.

After deputies also allegedly found she had a methamphetamine pipe, she was cited for suspicion of possessing a controlled substance and possessing paraphernalia for smoking a controlled substance and was released at the scene.

Friday, Nov. 19:

INCIDENT — A woman was detained about 6:10 p.m. at the Chumash Casino Resort by undercover investigators who knew a warrant had been issued for her arrest.

Deputies confirmed the warrant for failure to appear, misdemeanor child endangerment and possessing a controlled substance. She was cited for the warrant and released at the scene.

Saturday, Nov. 20:

INCIDENT — About 3:10 a.m., deputies spotted a 2003 Chevrolet Suburban allegedly with an inoperative license plate light and expired registration tabs at the stoplight at Highway 246 and Edison Street in Santa Ynez and stopped the vehicle at the Chumash Gas Station pumps.

Deputies found the driver also allegedly did not have a valid driver’s license. He was cited for suspicion of driving without a license plate light, with expired registration and without a driver’s license and released.

The Suburban was turned over to a passenger to drive away from the scene.

ARREST — When deputies stopped a 2014 Kia sedan for allegedly failing to stop at a stop sign about 11:45 p.m. at Edison and Pine streets in Santa Ynez, they discovered felony no-bail arrest warrants for failure to appear, being a felon in possession of a firearm, driving with a suspended or revoked license, possessing a controlled substance for sale and transporting a controlled substance for sale had been issued for passenger Benjamin Mondragon Cruz, who was taken into custody without incident.

INCIDENT — Investigators are looking for a man who stopped his car in front of the home of a retired sheriff’s lieutenant in the 100 block of Third Street in Solvang about 1:40 p.m., got out and left a COVID-19 mask inside an envelope covered with political jargon and fake blood on the porch, then got back into his car and immediately drove away.

The man, who was captured on surveillance video, was described as middle-aged, with tanned skin and gray hair driving an older-model gray sedan.

Sunday, Nov. 21:

ARREST — After deputies stopped a vehicle about 7:10 a.m. at Fir Avenue and First Place in Solvang for having a light out, they discovered driver Abel Zavala was allegedly connected to a stolen and recovered vehicle.

During a consensual search, deputies allegedly found a freshly broken methamphetamine pipe on his person and, in his vehicle, burglary tools, stolen property and the owner’s manual and registration for the recently recovered stolen vehicle.

Zavala was arrested on suspicion of vehicle theft, receiving stolen property, possessing burglary tools and possessing drug paraphernalia.

As Zavala was being booked into County Jail, custody deputies allegedly found a usable quantity of methamphetamine concealed on his person, so he was also booked on suspicion of attempting to bring drugs into a jail facility.

Monday, Nov. 22:

INCIDENT — A resident of the 400 block of Freear Drive in Buellton called deputies about 3 p.m. to investigate a possibly stolen vehicle after he received a call from Tutti Frutti Farms informing him his white Ford E-250 van had been located inside one of the operation’s hoop houses.

The man told deputies no one else should have possession of his van, and he believed it had been stolen early that morning. He was able to take possession of his van.

Tuesday, Nov. 23:

ARREST — A resident of the 400 block of Calor Drive in Buellton reported about 11:30 a.m. that her white Ford F-250 truck had been stolen sometime between Monday night and Tuesday morning.

Later, a friend told her the truck was seen abandoned near Highway 1 and Jalama Road, so she went to that location and confirmed her truck was there.

Deputies lifted fingerprints from the driver and passenger doors, and the woman took possession of her truck.

INCIDENT — Someone in the 144 to 500 block of Hollister Ranch Road around 12:20 p.m. reported finding a sawed-off shotgun on the railroad tracks near Gaviota State Beach.

A records check returned no match for the shotgun, so it was booked as found property.

INCIDENT — Deputies are looking for the driver of a gray late-model Ford F-150 truck with a flatbed cover who backed into a fire hydrant on Sertoma Way in Buellton around 5:35 p.m. and fled the scene.

The impact knocked the fire hydrant off its mount, causing water to pour into the street for about 10 minutes before the Fire Department could close the valve.

Deputies said the truck was captured on a Ring doorbell camera, but because of the angle and quality of the footage, the license plate couldn’t be determined. Residents said it was not seen often in the area.

However, deputies said the truck will have rear bumper damage and an unusually loud exhaust.

Wednesday, Nov. 24:

ARREST — After deputies stopped a vehicle just before 1 a.m. at Mission Drive and Pine Street in Solvang for a nonfunctional third brake light, they found that a restraining order had been issued protecting one occupant from the other, identified as Stevee Jean Chavez.

Chavez was arrested on suspicion of violating a criminal protective order and was booked into Lompoc Jail.

INCIDENT — The staff at Hotel Corque in the 400 block of Alisal Road in Solvang found a small baggie of suspected methamphetamine about 2:35 a.m. and turned it over to deputies, who booked it for destruction.

INCIDENT — A resident of the 2900 block of Long Valley Drive in Santa Ynez reported that sometime between 8 p.m. Tuesday and 7 a.m. Wednesday, someone tampered with his mailbox and stole a package from Amazon.

A check of Long Valley Road revealed more than a dozen mailboxes had been tampered with.

Deputies noted a Probation Department officer had conducted a probation search that day and discovered mail stolen in Santa Ynez Valley, and investigators are looking into a connection between the thefts.

Friday, Nov. 26:

ARREST — A westbound vehicle on Mission Drive near Alisal Road was stopped for having an inoperable headlight, and deputies discovered driver Erica Ruvalcaba was on probation with terms allowing search.

Deputies allegedly found a rock of suspected methamphetamine weighing 30 grams in the vehicle, and about 30 grams of suspected methamphetamine and a meth pipe were allegedly found on Ruvalcaba’s person.

About 20 small baggies and pay/owe sheets were also allegedly found in the search.

Ruvalcaba was arrested on suspicion of possessing a controlled substance for sales and booked into Santa Barbara County Jail.


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