A call to Santa Barbara Police about a man throwing objects at passing cars on the 1400 block of Cabrillo Boulevard around 7:30 p.m. on January 3 ended in the man’s arrest – but not before a chase through the nearby bird refuge.
Police arrived on Cabrillo Boulevard to find 32-year-old Andrew Mertz allegedly shirtless, shoeless, and chucking things at passing cars. According to Police Department spokesperson Sgt. Lorenzo Duarte, Mertz also hurled obscenities at the officers who approached him before he fled into the heavy brush of the bird refuge. When officers asked him to come out, he allegedly challenged the officers. Eventually, a canine unit was dispatched to retrieve him. Following a brief struggle, Mertz was arrested and booked into Santa Barbara County Jail on charges of throwing objects at moving vehicles and resisting arrest.