Carpinteria – Known by locals as “the last great beach town”, Carpinteria—nestled just off U.S. 101 between Santa Barbara and Ventura—is usually the paradigm of the peaceful, small town Southern California laid-back lifestyle. With an economy driven by tourism and agriculture, it’s hardly a hotbed of major crime and rarely the scene of law enforcement manhunts.
But as the midnight hour approached on May 28th, area residents were treated to more police action in their front yards than they might even have observed on their favorite television cop dramas. It was at that time, well into the dark of night, that, according to Santa Barbara County Sheriff Public Information Officer Kelly Hoover, Joseph Vallejo, 22, was observed by an SBSD Deputy on patrol “leaving a residence in Carpinteria.” The Deputy recognized Vallejo as a “parolee at large”, and approached him to verify his identity.
Apparently aware of his status as a parole violator, Vallejo took off on foot and the chase was on. But the Deputy—with many more resources than running speed at his command—summoned assistance from the nearby Carpinteria sub-station. Shortly thereafter, a perimeter around the area was secured and the neighborhood was then searched by multiple personnel as well as a K-9 Specialty Unit. Despite the resources and the effort, Vallejo was not located.
Twelve hours later, SBSD Deputies received, as described by Hoover in her report to the media, “several reports from residents that Vallejo was seen at a home in the Carpinteria area.” As per protocol, another secure perimeter was established, and both a K-9 Team and a Santa Barbara Air Support Unit Helicopter were brought into what was now a full-daylight search.
The product of all this effort on the part of law enforcement was merely frustration, as Joseph Vallejo—something of a Houdini—slipped through the net once again. At this point, SBSD Detectives have put out an appeal to the general public seeking assistance in locating their slippery suspect, and provide several details about Vallejo, including apparel described as “a black sweatshirt, jeans, and a black hat. He was riding a yellow mountain bike and had a black backpack, is about 5’7” tall, 125 pounds with black hair, brown eyes, and a large tattoo on his neck.”
Anyone having information on Vallejo is urged to contact the SBSD at (805)692-5743.
Photo: Courtesy Santa Barbara County Jail Booking
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