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Carpinteria Man Arrested for Hot Prowl Residential Burglary on Santa Barbara’s Westside

Francisco Ayala Hernandez Click to view larger
Francisco Ayala Hernandez

Francisco Ayala Hernandez, 24, of Carpinteria, was arrested for two counts of residential burglary after committing what is referred to as a “hot prowl burglary,” entering a residence while the victims are inside the location.

On Feb. 28 at 3:01 a.m., officers from the Santa Barbara Police Department responded to a call of a residential burglary that had just occurred at an apartment on the 600 block of W. Cota Street, with the suspect being chased on foot by one of the victims. 

Upon arrival Officer Ben Ahrens and Officer Kristin Kim stopped Hernandez as he was running across the Ortega Street footbridge, still being pursued by a victim.

Investigation revealed the apartment where the incident took place is shared by different families that rent separate rooms. At the time of the incident Hernandez entered the residence through the unlocked front door. 

He then went into a bedroom occupied by a woman sleeping, and while she slept stole money from her purse and searched the pockets of the pants she was wearing. 

The victim was roused slightly by this, however in her somnolent state believed she was being touched by a family member and not a stranger. 

Hernandez then went into another room where a second victim and his wife were sleeping. This victim was roused by the sound of Hernandez moving about and opening dresser drawers, however, initially thought the noise was being made by other housemates; That is, until he laid eyes on Hernandez and saw Hernandez take his wallet from on top of his dresser. 

This victim yelled at Hernandez to drop his wallet, however Hernandez fled the scene. This victim gave chase while his wife called 9-1-1, and continued to pursue Hernandez until he was stopped by the officers on the Ortega Street footbridge. 

Hernandez was found to be in possession of the victims’ stolen property. Investigation further revealed that Hernandez is currently on probation for burglary.

Hernandez was booked into Santa Barbara County Jail for two counts of burglary with a bail amount of $50,000.00; and on a no bail probation detainer for violation of probation.

— Sgt. Riley Harwood is the public information officer for the Santa Barbara Police Department. 


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