Tuesday, July 17 , 2018, 8:46 pm | Fair 66º

 
 
 

Armed Man Robs, Kidnaps Woman in Mall Parking Lot

A suspect is arrested about an hour later walking on Las Positas

Shortly before 4:30 p.m. Thursday, Santa Barbara police dispatch received a call of a robbery at La Cumbre Mall.

The female victim reported that she had been shopping at the mall and was walking to her car in the parking lot. As she reached her vehicle, she was confronted by an armed man who made her get into the vehicle to drive, then got into the vehicle himself.

The victim said the man robbed her of some cash and forced her to drive him to the Santa Barbara Golf Club on McCaw Avenue, near Las Positas. She dropped him off in the parking lot and left the immediate area to call police. She was unharmed.

Officers arrived, and as a precaution, closed down the golf course and associated buildings, including the restaurant and pro shop.

A large search of the area included the golf course grounds, Adams Elementary School, the Earl Warren Showgrounds and Loretta Plaza.

At 5:20 p.m., officers stopped Brian Carver, 37, of Salt Lake City, Utah, walking near the gas station on Las Positas and Modoc Road. He matched the physical description given for the suspect but was wearing different clothes. Detectives were called to assist.

Through their investigation, detectives have uncovered substantial evidence connecting Carver to the robbery. The investigation is ongoing.

Carver was booked into the Santa Barbara County Jail on charges of armed robbery and kidnapping. Bail was set at $1 million.

He told police he worked for the Carnival at the recent Santa Barbara Fair & Expo at the Earl Warren Showgrounds. When the Carnival packed up and left town, Carner decided to remain in Santa Barbara. For accommodations, he camped in an empty horse stall at Earl Warren.

Police said Friday that he is facing criminal charges in Utah for possession of child pornography and domestic violence threats.

— Paul McCaffrey is a public information officer for the Santa Barbara Police Department.

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