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The Santa Maria Police Department is asking for the public’s help in locating a man who disappeared late Tuesday night after he entered the enclosure around a drainage basin near the northwest corner of the city.

A resident notified police shortly before 11 p.m. that her acquaintance David Navarro, 32, had entered the fenced-off basin at the corner of North Blosser Road and Canal Street, but she had not been able to locate him since, a police spokesman said.

Officers who arrived on scene learned Navarro had not been seen entering the water, but they recovered what they believed to be his jacket from the water in the same general area, said Sgt. Daniel Rios, supervisor of the Detective Bureau, which was brought in to take over the investigation.

Police officers and personnel from Santa Maria Fire Department and Santa Barbara County Fire Department Search and Rescue Team conducted an extensive search of the immediate and surrounding areas until the early morning hours, Rios said.

He said the search included watercraft, drones and thermal imaging were all used in the search, which resumed again at daylight using drones and the California Highway Patrol helicopter, which also checked all flood channels.

Police also requested mutual aid assistance from the San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Office Search and Rescue Team for an underwater search of the reservoir at Blosser Road and Canal Street.

As the search continues, Rios said anyone with information related to Navarro’s disappearance is asked to call the Police Department Communications Center at 805-928-3781, ext. 2277.


News Editor

Mike Hodgson is news editor at the Santa Ynez Valley News, where he writes about local government, special events and the people who live in the Valley. He has been a photographer, writer, news editor and managing editor at weekly newspapers since 1972

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