At 4 p.m. Monday, Santa Barbara police officers responded to an assault at the 1100 block of Garden Street.

The 39-year-old male victim was confronted by the suspect, identified by police as Gregory Ward, 45, for an outstanding debt.

The victim didn’t have the money, and the suspect subsequently forced his way into the victim’s residence. He then struck the victim several times on the head and once on the arm with a hammer. The suspect fled the scene, and the victim was transported to the hospital to be treated for his injuries.

A records check of Ward revealed that he was on parole for assault with a deadly weapon. 

On Tuesday, officers spotted Ward, who had altered his appearance by shaving his head, in the 200 block of North Quarantina. He gave the officers a false name. The officers arrested him in the attack.

Ward was booked into the Santa Barbara County Jail on charges of assault with a deadly weapon, false information to a peace officer and a parole violation. 

Stabbing at Alice Keck Park

At 9 p.m. Tuesday, officers responded to a stabbing at Alice Keck Park.

Officers found a group of people who were with the 20-year-old male victim. The victim had been stabbed in the left side of his abdomen. The victim and his friends said that they had an argument with two suspects. When the victim challenged the suspect to fight, the suspect produced a knife and stabbed the victim.

The victim was transported to the hospital, where he underwent surgery and was stabilized. He was admitted into Cottage Hospital.

During the investigation, the suspect and three friends called 9-1-1 and reported that they had been in a fight earlier at Alice Keck Park.

When officers arrived at their location at De La Vina and Mission Street, Fernando Aldapa, a 25-year-old Santa Barbara resident, told officers he had been attacked by a group of people he had met that night at the park.

Further investigation revealed that Aldapa was responsible for the victim’s injuries. The knife was recovered by officers, and Aldapa was arrested and booked into Santa Barbara County Jail for assault with a deadly weapon.

Lorenzo Duarte is a sergeant with the Santa Barbara Police Department.