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Suspects Arrested In Assault Witnessed By Off-Duty Officer

Santa Barbara police officers were dispatched to Cabrillo Boulevard and Calle Cesar Chavez at 7:01 p.m. Tuesday on a call of an assault in progress.

Officers found medics tending to the 58-year-old male victim. The victim told the officers he had been assaulted by two Hispanic males and offered descriptions.

Unknown to the victim, the assault was witnessed by an off-duty Santa Barbara police officer. With the officer’s assistance, police searched the area for the suspects, who were found nearby.

Luis Cardenas, 25, was arrested for felony battery. Juan Moreno Castillo, 42, faces charges of felony battery and false information to a peace officer for providing a fake name and date of birth.

One of the men is believed to have initiated the assault by punching the victim on the head. The second man joined in, and both continued to punch the victim’s head and upper body. The victim fell to the ground and continued to be punched. One of the men stood over the victim and “stomped” on his head several times with his foot. It was determined that the victim had lost consciousness during the assault.

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

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