Santa Barbara- S County

Crews rescue man from ocean after he left daughter in parking lot

Man reportedly left daughter in parking lot

Crews rescue man from ocean after he left daughter in parking lot

CARPINTERIA, Calif. - Several agencies worked throughout the night and into Tuesday morning to rescue a man who left his daughter in a parking lot and jumped into the ocean.

According to the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office, deputies received a call at around 11:30 p.m. Monday that a six-year-old girl was lost in the Procore parking lot in the 6200 block of Carpinteria Avenue. Her father had left their car and had not returned.

A Procore employee called police to try and help the little girl find her father. A law enforcement dog tracked the father walking along the beach near Venoco Pier when he jumped into the ocean to avoid a helicopter trying to track him down. The man was in the water for about an hour and a half until the U.S. Coast Guard was finally able to rescue him, deputies said.

The man was identified as German Noe Sotelo, 39, of Carpinteria. Sotelo was taken to the hospital for a mental and physical wellness check. Once he is released, he will be booked into the Santa Barbara County Jail on a complaint of child endangerment. 

His daughter was frightened but not injured. She has since been reunited with her mother and family, deputies said.

Multiple agencies assisted in the operation including Carpinteria Fire Department, Ventura County Sheriff's Office, Montecito Fire Department, and the U.S. Coast Guard.

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