Monday, April 14, 2008

Cops handle drinking, drugs and a missing gnome


A few drunk drivers, an unplanned marijuana bust and a missing garden gnome are among the latest calls taken by Santa Barbara police.

April 8, 9:45 p.m. — Police responded to the 700 block of W. Figueroa Street for a report of an illegal camper. Officers found the vehicle as described with a 68-year-old man in its front seat, eating cheese puffs and drinking from an open 24-ounce can of Coors Light. The man claimed to have no identification, but provided his date of birth. A search of the vehicle revealed a stack of identification cards, including three with the man’s true name. Officers also found a false resident alien card and a false social security card. The suspect had two misdemeanor warrants for a previous DUI conviction and officers placed him under arrest for possession of counterfeit identification.

April 9, 3:50 p.m. — An off-duty police officer came across an injury traffic accident in the 1500 block of W. Valerio Street. He noticed one of the drivers, a 22-year-old woman, exhibiting signs of intoxication and asked her to sit down until law enforcement arrived. The woman attempted to flee several times and was detained by the off-duty officer and another man. After being handcuffed and taken to the police station, the woman admitted to drinking two “Joose” alcoholic energy drinks and smoking marijuana. She failed multiple field sobriety tests and officers also took a blood sample. Police booked her on $100,000 bail for DUI causing injury, hit-and-run, resisting arrest and driving on a suspended license stemming from a prior DUI conviction.

April 10, 1:43 p.m. — A uniformed motorcycle officer working traffic enforcement in the 200 block of E. Cabrillo Boulevard spotted a 1981 Cadillac Seville breaking the posted 25 mph speed limit, clocking the vehicle at approximately 35 mph. The officer also noticed the driver drinking from a container before placing it between his legs and acting suspiciously. The officer pulled alongside the Cadillac and ordered the driver to pull over. Once he had stopped, the 39-year-old driver denied having any open containers or weapons. A search of the vehicle revealed a half-full 16-ounce can of Budweiser in a paper bag and a 2.5-inch knife. Police arrested the man for possession of a deadly weapon and an open container, placing him in jail on $20,000 bail.

April 11, 5:03 p.m. — A suspect entered Business First Bank at 800 N. Milpas St. and told the teller he would rob the bank if it didn’t have so many cameras.

April 11, 6:50 p.m. — Officers arrived at an apartment in the 2000 block of Red Rose Way after a resident called about an attempted burglary. Police spoke with the caller, a 19-year-old man, who pointed out evidence suggesting someone had attempted to kick in the apartment’s front door. As the resident opened the door, officers noted a strong scent of marijuana emanating from the apartment. Police also spotted a small amount of marijuana on the coffee table. After stepping back outside to talk, the resident admitted no one in the apartment had a state-issued medicinal cannabis card.
Authorities asked the young man to turn over any marijuana he had in the apartment. He led police to his bedroom, where he opened a closet safe and pulled out approximately 20 grams of the illicit drug. Police also noticed an envelope stuffed with cash. The resident admitted he had no license to sell the drug, despite the fact that he sells it to his friends regularly. He also admitted his three roommates also sell marijuana and have friends over to smoke.
Two other roommates in the apartment, a 20-year-old and a 19-year-old, also admitted to selling marijuana and consented to a search of the apartment. Police found two scales, smoking devices, containers with a marijuana scent, a high-powered lamp, planting materials, and a growing box that appeared to have been used to cultivate marijuana plants. The roommates said they sold marijuana to friends and used the cash they made to purchase their own supply for personal use.
They admitted to recently purchasing the safe after an attempted break-in on April 10. Authorities arrested all three men and booked them on $20,000 bail for possession of marijuana for sale.

April 12, 11:36 a.m. — A 79-year-old woman who lives in the 100 block of Las Ondas called police to report the disappearance of her bright blue gnome typically located in the front of her home. Police recovered a note left, apparently by the thieves, where the gnome had been. No witnesses or suspects have been identified and authorities could not reveal the contents of the note.

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