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Local News

Pair Accused of Assaulting Santa Barbara Sheriff’s Deputy After Hit-and-Run Crash

Two Santa Barbara men are facing multiple charges after allegedly fleeing the scene of a hit-and-run crash and assaulting a law enforcement officer on Wednesday, according to the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office.

Jared Ashton, 34, and Micah Wroten, 25, were booked into the Santa Barbara County Jail on suspicion of resisting arrest with force and violence, as well as charges related to a DUI hit-and-run, sheriff's spokeswoman Kelly Hoover said.

The two men are being held on $500,000 bail each, Hoover said. 

At about 2 a.m., a sheriff’s deputy and California Highway Patrol officers responded to the area of Patterson Avenue and Highway 101 in Goleta to investigate a report of a vehicle crash, Hoover said.

Officers found a car on its roof and the driver nearby, according to Hoover. 

Jared Ashton Click to view larger
Jared Ashton

“It was discovered that the accident was a result of a hit-and-run, where the suspect vehicle fled the scene after colliding with the victim vehicle, sending it down an embankment and causing it to overturn and rest on its roof,” Hoover said.

While at the scene, calls came in regarding a vehicle driving on its rims and having front-end damage in the area south of Turnpike Road. 

When sheriff’s deputies and CHP officers responded to the location, they found a damaged white Toyota Tundra that matched the description of the suspect vehicle, Hoover said.

The deputy observed Ashton — who appeared to be intoxicated — walking away from the truck, Hoover said. 

Micah Wroten Click to view larger
Micah Wroten

“The deputy attempted to direct Ashton onto the sidewalk and out of the roadway, but he became verbally confrontational and refused to comply with lawful orders,” Hoover said.

As the deputy attempted to detain Ashton, Wroten moved in from the side and struck the deputy in the face, Hoover said. 

A fist fight began with both suspects throwing punches and hitting the deputy’s body several times, Hoover said.  

“The deputy continued to fight back in an attempt to detain the suspects,” Hoover said.

Both suspects continued punching and the deputy sustained a bite on his hand.

After a few minutes, a CHP sergeant found the deputy and assisted him in apprehending and detaining Ashton, Hoover said.

Additional deputies arrived to assist in taking both suspects into custody. 

Hoover said Wroten continued to resist after being handcuffed, and he kicked at deputies and the patrol car, causing damage.

The deputy was transported to the emergency room where he was treated for moderate injuries to his head, back, elbows, knees, hands and wrist, according to Hoover.

The suspects were transported to county jail where they were treated for minor injuries.  

Noozhawk staff writer Brooke Holland can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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