Sunday, May 20 , 2018, 9:35 am | Mostly Cloudy 61º

 
 
 
 

Local News

Santa Maria Teen Arrested on Suspicion of Sexual Assault, Kidnapping

NIcholas Padilla Click to view larger
NIcholas Padilla

An 18-year-old Santa Maria man was arrested on suspicion of kidnapping and sexual assault Wednesday after allegedly attacking a 15-year-old girl in his vehicle and attempting to push her into his trunk, authorities said. 

Nicholas Padilla was booked into the Lompoc Jail on $1 million bail on suspicion of kidnapping, sexual assault with the intent to commit rape, domestic violence and criminal threats, Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Department spokeswoman Kelly Hoover said. 

Authorities said Padilla was driving on West Main Street Wednesday around 2:30 p.m. with a 15-year-old girl, who knew each other, and Padilla allegedly became angry with the girl, pulled the car over and started hitting her with his hands. 

A witness called 9-1-1 and "Padilla then drove away with the teen's feet sticking out of the passenger's side window," Hoover said in a statement. 

Padilla then allegedly stopped the car near Casmalia and held a knife to the girl's head, and attempted to rape her, according to the sheriff's department. 

Authorities also said Padilla attempted to force the girl inside the vehicle's trunk, but she was able to escape and run toward the witness who had called 9-1-1 and followed the suspect vehicle, Hoover said. 

Deputies responded and Padilla was arrested "after a brief struggle with law enforcement," Hoover said. 

Noozhawk staff writer Joshua Molina 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.

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made through PayPal below, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments.

Thank you for your vital support.

Become a Supporter

Enter your email
Select your membership level
×

Payment Information

You are purchasing:

Payment Method

Pay by Credit Card:

Mastercard, Visa, American Express, Discover

Pay with Apple Pay or Google Pay:

Noozhawk partners with Stripe to provide secure invoicing and payments processing.

  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click Here to Get Started >

Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.

Daily Noozhawk

Subscribe to Noozhawk's A.M. Report, our free e-Bulletin sent out every day at 4:15 a.m. with Noozhawk's top stories, hand-picked by the editors.

Sign Up Now >