Police arrested a Santa Barbara area gang member on Saturday evening after the man allegedly was involved in an altercation and attempted to flee from police while armed with a handgun. Christopher Lyn Manson III, 26, was charged with assault with a deadly weapon and several other offenses.
Santa Barbara police officer Kyle Rapp made the arrest after chasing down Manson on foot, said police spokesperson Sgt. Riley Harwood in a press release. Rapp had been conducting a traffic stop when passersby alerted him to a fight involving a gun. He arrived at the intersection of State and Gutierrez streets around 9 p.m. to find three men fighting. The men dispersed when they saw Rapp.
Trailing Manson down the 300 block of State Street, Rapp tried to make contact with the suspect, who drew a handgun from his waistband and began to run away. During the pursuit, Manson tried to throw his weapon into a hedge.
The chase concluded at the State Street / Highway 101 overcrossing, where Rapp apprehended Manson and arrested him. Manson was booked into Santa Barbara County Jail with several charges, including assault with a deadly weapon. His bail is set at $150,000.
Police recovered the handgun involved in the incident from the sidewalk where Manson had thrown it. The weapon is a Sig Sauer P226 9mm pistol and was “loaded with 15 rounds,” said Harwood in the press release.
The victim of the alleged assault, a 34-year-old male, is another known Santa Barbara area gang member. Manson allegedly used the handgun to pistol-whip the victim during the altercation. According to Harwood, the victim was “uncooperative” with investigators and was transported to Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital, where he was treated for facial lacerations and released. The other suspect involved in the fight has not yet been apprehended.
Manson had previously been arrested in October 2008, when SBPD had joined forces with federal and state agencies to round up Eastside gang members as a part of Operation Gator Roll. Manson, aged 18 at the time, was arrested on state charges.
Anyone with information on Saturday’s incident is encouraged to call detective Michael Claytor at (805) 897-2340 or email him at email@example.com.