A man wanted for nearly two decades on child-molestation charges in Santa Barbara County was arrested and booked into jail this week after being extradited from Guatemala, according to the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Department.
Jeffrey Reed Parish, 65, is accused of molesting a 4-year-old Carpinteria girl in 1994, and was believed to have fled the country shortly after his arrest the same year, said Sgt. Mark Williams.
Authorities believe that Parish fled to Mexico, where he had been known to visit several months out of the year, and the case has remained open, with Parish listed on the Sheriff’s Top 10 Most Wanted list.
Last year, the sheriff’s Office Felony Fugitive Unit and FBI agents began to reexamining Parish’s case, and received new information that he was living in Panajachel, a small town in Guatemala.
That information was passed on to FBI agents in the region, who coordinated with Guatemalan authorities, Williams said, adding that Parish was arrested without incident.
Parish, who had been living under the name “Blake,” was immediately deported, and sheriff’s investigators and FBI agents escorted him back to Santa Barbara County, where he was booked on his outstanding felony warrant.
He was being held without bail, according to Williams.
Parish may have molested other victims in the early 1990s prior to his arrest and flight from the country, Williams said.
The Sheriff’s Department is urging anyone who may have information on other individuals who may be victims to contact the department immediately at 805.681.4150.