A 29-year-old man was arrested for an alleged hit and run and crystal methamphetamine possession on the Mesa Wednesday night. A Santa Barbara police officer, Ethan Ragsdale, was on routine patrol at 9:25 p.m. when he heard the sound of a car crashing in the Flora Vista neighborhood. When he reached the 2300 block of Cliff Drive, he spotted a car moving away from the area where the sound had come from. The officer followed the 1990 Cadillac east on Cliff Drive, then down Mohawk Road to Channing Avenue, where it was parked mid-block.

The vehicle had “extensive right front damage consistent with a major traffic collision,” according to a statement from authorities, and the driver got out and quickly walked away. Ragsdale spotted a glittery substance which looked like shards of glass falling from the driver’s clothing, which, upon police examination, was suspected to be crystal meth. More of the suspected drug was found in the suspect’s pocket and a police canine found more in the center console of the vehicle. Police also found $1,000 cash in the car, which is suspected of being drug profit money, police said.

The police statement continued that the driver, who was arrested for possession of methamphetamine for sale, transportation of meth, and hit and run, told them he had been driving on Cliff Drive when he received a cell phone call, became distracted by the call, and drifted right, crashing into a parked truck.

The fire department was called to wash away tiny fragments of the suspected drug which were too small to be recovered.


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