After a series of smash and grabs at the Cold Spring Trailhead, County Sheriff deputies are working with community groups to put a stop to auto thefts. With the help of the Montecito Association, the department is devising a plan to install a surveillance camera near the trailhead to ward off potential crimes.

The department has been targeting these crimes with added interest in recent weeks. In the past, deputies have said that they couldn’t install surveillance equipment because they had no authority over public right of way. Residents of the area have expressed interest in placing the cameras on their property, a solution deputies say is feasible.

County Sheriff’s deputies are also targeting construction site burglaries. The department reported recently that more than 90 projects are occurring currently in Montecito. The constructions sites’ remote location, deputies said, makes it difficult for them to curb crime occurrences. But law enforcement officials are involving the Montecito Association in a new plan that will track all permits at construction locations.

Painting Stolen on Hill Road

Friday, July 7 – An unknown suspect broke into a residence on Hill Road and stole a painting worth an estimated value of $2,000.

Deputy T. Green conducted a fingerprint search and sent his findings to County Forensics.

Intoxicated Stranger Stalks Hill Road

Tuesday, July 18 – A man was arrested on Hixon Road for being under the influence of a controlled substance.

Montecito Fire District paramedics who treated the suspect said the man claimed he was at home. The man did not live there and didn’t know what city he was in.

In his sheriff’s report, Deputy R. Baisa said the man’s pupils were dilated and that he was grinding his teeth.

The suspect was booked at County Jail.

Lights Off at Hot Springs Residence

Thursday, July 20 – A woman on Hot Springs Road reported suspicious circumstances involving a possible intruder. The witness said she noticed a male “hand with dark complexion” reach past the partially closed door of her room to flick off the light switch. The suspect reportedly fled without incident.