“Late Checkout” Ends in Arrests
Santa Barbara County – We all know how, when traveling and staying in hotels or motels, it’s nearly impossible to enjoy a leisurely morning of “sleeping in”, enjoying room service, taking a long hot shower, and packing our things in time to make that irrational “check out time” of 11:00 a.m. Two Santa Maria residents surely feel the same way after the events of April 29th, pursuant to which they were arrested.
Perhaps eager to make that pre-noon check out time and avoid any motel overcharges, Flavio Delabra, 41, and his companion Dawn Karen Bischoff, 52, according to SMPD spokesman Lt. Mark Norling, had earlier that morning checked out of their room at a Santa Maria motel, but they left behind a loaded gun and a substantial amount of methamphetamine. When motel staff discovered the weapon and the drugs, and then observed Delabra and Bischoff attempting to forcibly re-enter their room, they summoned police.
The pair were in the act of leaving the premises of the motel once again when—at the behest of an earlier call to police made by the hotel desk clerk—they were confronted by officers of the Santa Maria Police Department.
When the uniformed officers showed up and “learned the suspects had returned to the hotel and attempted to break into the room,” Norling reported, they were spotted by Delabra and Bischoff, who immediately fled the motel parking lot in their car. A brief vehicle pursuit ensued, punctuated by a traffic stop with officers holding their suspects’ attention with drawn service weapons.
Subsequent investigation revealed that Delabra and Bischoff had left a quarter pound of methamphetamine, a substantial amount of cash, and a stolen firearm in the motel room. Both were arrested and transported to Santa Barbara County Jail, where Delabra (he’s the one with the lovely ring piercing in his eyebrow) was charged with weapons and narcotics violations, while Bischoff was cited and released for possession of methamphetamine.
Photos: Courtesy Santa Barbara County Jail Booking