RECOVERED JEWELRY AT HOT SPRINGS ESTATE

Wednesday, April 19 – Nearly $100,00 in jewelry that had been thought to be stolen was recovered last month. The owner who reported the pieces missing just after the death of her husband said she found them at her Hot Springs Road estate.

The missing items were a platinum 18-karat yellow gold diamond ruby earrings valued at $35,000, a platinum diamond and ruby bracelet valued at $20,000 and a platinum diamond ruby art deco style bracelet valued at $37,500.

Squabble on East Mountain Drive

Wednesday, May 3 – A dispute over the use of an access road broke out between two residents after one neighbor reportedly hired gardeners to clear away some vegetation blocking the entrance to her property on East Mountain Drive.

The property owner, who uses an access road that cuts into her neighbor’s property, had apparently tasked the work to be done without permission from her neighbor, which led to a dispute.

The woman’s neighbor claimed he should have been notified.

According to the woman, her neighbor threatened her by shouting, “that’s it for you – you’re through,” then swept his hand across his throat as if he was slitting it.

Her neighbor denies the allegations.

Missing Tractor on Bella Vista Road

Thursday, May 4 - A tractor disappeared from a Bella Vista Road property early Thursday morning.

According to the tractor’s owner on February 2003, he purchased a tractor from one of his employees for $18,000, which he paid for in cash and the rest in a labor and materials trade. Six months later, the previous owner of the tractor said there was a lien on the tractor and that it had to be paid.

The Bella Vista man said he assumed that the bank had repossessed the tractor. But when he called the bank, he said he learned the tractor had not been repossessed.

County Sheriff’s Department attempts to contact the previous owner were unsuccessful.

Attempted Break-in on Lillie Avenue

Thursday, May 4 – A Summerland store on Lillie Avenue reported a possible attempted break-in.

The owner said he arrived at work and noticed pry marks on the front door.

Deputy T. Green said the marks might have come from a screwdriver, and indicated a break-in might have occurred.

Digital photos were taken and submitted to forensics.

Suspicious Circumstances at Hot Springs Road

Saturday, May 6 – Deputies were called out for suspicious circumstances at a construction site on Hot Springs Road.

A passing neighbor said he noticed a white Ford van parked outside the construction site around 10 pm and asked its passengers what they were doing.

The two males reportedly responded that they were the property caretakers. Knowing that the construction site didn’t have caretakers, the neighbor immediately called Santa Barbara Sheriff’s Department.

By the time deputies arrived, the van had left the premise.

Deputy Van Winkle warns residents to be on the lookout for a white Ford Econoline van with no windows on the side. The van is believed to be driven by two Hispanic males between 20-40 years of age, both sporting crew cuts.

Cold Springs Trailhead Smash and Grab

Sunday, May 7 – An unknown suspect shattered the window of a vehicle parked at the Cold Springs Trailhead on East Mountain Drive and stole the victim’s purse.

The victim told Deputy Van Winkle that she returned from her hike around 5 pm and noticed the passenger side window had been broken.

A rock had been thrown through the window, she said.

Be Alert, Be Smart

Cold Springs Trailhead has been an area of constant theft. Smash and grab crimes are happening on a weekly basis. Santa Barbara Sheriff’s Department reminds people to lock valuables in their trunks. Keep all valuables out of sight, but more importantly keep your valuables at home if you go hiking. If you see any suspicious people at the Cold Springs Trailhead, contact the Santa Barbara Sheriff’s Department.