Santa Barbara detectives have arrested a suspect in connection with the recent string of armed robberies at downtown parking lot kiosks. Paul Gerald Gradias, 49, was taken into custody Tuesday and booked in County Jail for armed robbery with a bail of $100,000.
According to police, Gradias is a longtime Santa Barbara resident and recently lived in Washington state. Authorities were led to him after they received a tip from an area resident who saw a security footage image of Gradias that police released to the media. Detectives said he cut his hair after the image was broadcast.
Gradias was picked up without incident as he walked on the 1300 block of Salinas Place. Authorities then searched a hotel room in the 2800 block of State Street where Gradias had been staying and found corroborating evidence, but not the handgun used in the robberies. During the February 21 robbery, the kiosk attendant told police that Gradias had a knit cap pulled down over his face that he was able to see through.
A former monitor for Chumash archaeological sites, Gradias was arrested on February 2, but it’s not clear on what charges.