What began with one alleged robbery at knifepoint resulted in two additional stops for Santa Barbara police officers last night. Cops arrived at the 400 block of Garden Street to meet a man who claimed to have been robbed by three Hispanic men. The man explained that he had been riding his bike east on Yanonali Street when one of the men grabbed his backpack and pulled him to the ground. The suspects then said they’d cut the man if he didn’t give them his bike, the man explained. The three fled with the victims’ backpack and bicycle.
Officers then headed to the site of the scuffle, but were flagged down near the Garden Street underpass by a second man, this one claiming that he had been beaten about the head and face by a group of Hispanic men who robbed him of his backpack and bicycle not far from the Yanonali site.
As officers investigated this claim, dispatched notified them of a third alleged attack. This man, who claimed his arm was broken, reportedly said that the attackers were headed west on Montecito Street. However, upon arriving at the Santa Barbara Amtrak station and speaking with the alleged third victim, police began to suspect the man of being of the people who had instigated the previous two attacks. Meanwhile, other officers searched the train depot premises and found two men near the railroad tracks on Rancheria Street. These men matched the descriptions of the attackers given by the previous two witnesses. A box cutter – possibly the weapon with which the attackers threatened the first victim – as well as the two stolen bicycles were also found at the scene, a police report noted.
The three men were arrested on charges of attempted robbery and battery.