Crime

Five suspected gang associates arrested in Santa Barbara

Suspects reportedly challenged victim to fight

Suspected gang dispute leads to five...

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - Five suspects who are known to have ties to local gangs were arrested Thursday afternoon in Santa Barbara. 

At around 1:20 p.m., Santa Barbara Police Department received a complaint about a group of men, possibly armed with knives, disturbing the peace near Guadalajara Market at De La Guera Street.

Multiple officers responded to the scene. Witnesses on scene reported that the men may have fled in a black SUV headed toward the Santa Barbara Mesa.

Officers located the vehicle shortly after the initial call near the intersection of Cliff Drive and Las Positas Road.

Inside the vehicle, officers located two adult men and three juveniles. The five suspects were known to officers as having ties to local gangs.

The two adult suspects have been identified as Jonathan Rios, 21, and Carlos Guarneros, 19. The three juveniles are aged 17, 17 and 16, respectively. The suspects are all residents of Goleta.

Back at the original crime scene, officers interviewed witnesses and reviewed security footage. The video footage showed the five subjects chasing a victim and challenging the victim to a fight. It was unclear if the victim was threatened with a knife.

The five suspects were arrested and taken to Santa Barbara County Jail or Santa Barbara Juvenile Hall.

The suspects face possible charges for Disturbing the Peace for challenging another person to a fight in public in gang enhancements. One of the juveniles faces charges for a concealed dangerous weapon, reportedly a miniature bat.

Two of the juveniles are on probation and are expected to receive additional charges for probation violations.

Officers said they believe they have located the victim and the investigation is ongoing.


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