Wednesday, January 27, 2021     Volume: 21, Issue: 47

Santa Maria Sun / News

The following article was posted on January 5th, 2021, in the Santa Maria Sun - Volume 21, Issue 45 [ Submit a Story ]
The following articles were printed from Santa Maria Sun [] - Volume 21, Issue 45

Fatal shooting in Guadalupe is still under investigation

By Malea Martin

An investigation into a Dec. 22 shooting in Guadalupe is ongoing after the city’s police department handed the case over to the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office. The shooting resulted in one death and one injury. 

The Guadalupe Police Department handed a fatal Dec. 22 shooting case over to the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Department for investigation, which is still ongoing.

According to the county Sheriff’s Office, the incident occurred just after 10 p.m. in the 1000 block of Escalante Street and the victim was 19-year-old Jesus Felipe Garcia Jr. of Guadalupe. So far, the Sheriff’s Office hasn’t released the identity of the injured person. 

“The circumstances, including determining if this is gang-related, are part of the ongoing investigation,” Sheriff’s Office officials said in a Dec. 30 statement said. “No arrests have been made and detectives are conducting thorough follow-up that includes forensic examination results.”

Sheriff’s Office Lt. Erik Raney told the Sun that the investigation is still ongoing, and that the county took on the case “as a matter of mutual aid at [the city’s] request.”

Guadalupe police Sgt. Frank Medina said the decision to pass the case along to the county was a matter of resources. 

“It all depends on the case. Ultimately the one that makes that decision [to pass the case along] is the chief. In some of the more complex investigations they have more resources than Guadalupe,” Medina said. “At that point in time, we didn’t have resources available, so to speed up the investigation, the chief made the decision to turn it over to the sheriff’s. They had detectives that were available at that point in time to quickly start investigating the crime.”

Medina said that although it’s still unclear whether the Dec. 22 shooting was gang-related, in general, Guadalupe’s crime “went a little bit up” in 2020 and gang-related activity ticked up slightly as well. He said the city hasn’t pinpointed an exact cause of any increases in crime. The Guadalupe Police Department was unable to provide the Sun with 2020 crime data before press time. 

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