WEATHER »
Panga boat discovered on Tajiguas Beach

SBSO

Panga boat discovered on Tajiguas Beach


Motorist Spots Panga on Tajiguas Beach

Authorities Find Evidence of Drug Smuggling


The fourth panga boat to be discovered near Refugio State Beach in recent months was spotted at around 6:40 a.m. Monday by a motorist on nearby Highway 101. Santa Barbara Sheriff’s deputies and detectives accompanied by personnel with Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), California State Parks, and the U.S. Coast Guard responded to find a 30-foot panga abandoned on Tajiguas Beach.

No suspects were located and no narcotics were seized, but authorities found evidence of drug trafficking at the scene, said Sheriff’s Office spokesperson Kelly Hoover. The panga was removed and transported to Long Beach where it was booked as evidence. No additional details on the investigation have been released.

“The Sheriff’s Office Special Investigations Bureau is working with HSI to investigate the increase of ‘Panga’ boat activity in our area,” said Hoover in a prepared statement. The last panga found in the area was on June 17, she noted.

“The Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office is asking the public to be aware of the ever-growing problem and to please contact law enforcement to report suspicious boats in the ocean off Santa Barbara County or suspicious activity on Highway 101 where there is coastal/beach access,” Hoover said.

To submit a comment on this article, email letters@independent.com or visit our Facebook page. To submit information to a reporter, email tips@independent.com.



event calendar sponsored by:

Montecito Pushes Back on Streamlined Rebuild Process

Not so fast with fast-track rebuilding, leaders tell the county

St. George Files Suit Against Gelb for Unpaid Debt

Pair of Isla Vista landlords in legal tussle over property sales costs.

Thousands of Plaintiffs Added to Refugio Oil Spill Case

Litigation follows footsteps of 1969 Union Oil spill attorneys.

Push Comes to Shove Between Law Enforcement and Mental Health

County supervisors confront too many needs with not enough money.

Helicopter Hits Electrical Wires, Starts Small Fire

A crop duster hit power lines in Ellwood Canyon.