Santa Barbara County – The rubric that “you’re known by the friends you keep” was once again validated when five people—none of whom should really have been hanging around together—were swept up in a law enforcement action at a Santa Maria residence by detectives from Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s and Santa Maria Police Department’s Gang Suppression Teams.
SMPD spokesman Sgt. Woody Vega reported that with a search warrant in hand targeting the Sunflower Court home, officers searched the residence, and along with Nancy Cerna, 30, Gabriel Estrada, 47, Jill Harrison, 35, Alfred Plaza, 51, and Sandra Vaughn, 34, they found evidence of methamphetamine in quantities significant enough to suspect the illegal drugs were there for the purposes of marketing, distribution, and sales.
Plaza, the initial subject of the investigation as a known and active member of a criminal street gang, was promptly arrested and charged with possession of methamphetamine for sale with gang enhancement.
Because of the “guilt by association” presumption clearly at work in such circumstances, the remaining four individuals at the scene became the subject of scrutiny and investigation which led the the arrest of Cerna on suspicion of possession of methamphetamine for sale, Vaughn on suspicion of possession of methamphetamine, Estrada for being under the influence of a controlled substance and probation violation, and Harrison for being under the influence of a controlled substance.
With the party over, Harrison was cited and released while her four friends were each transported to Santa Barbara County Jail for booking on the aforementioned charges.
Photos: Courtesy Santa Barbara County Jail Booking
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