Tuesday, September 27 , 2016, 1:14 am | Fair 71º

  • Follow Noozhawk on LinkedIn
  • Follow Noozhawk on Pinterest
  • Follow Noozhawk on YouTube
 
 
 
 

Local News

Security Golf Cart Used By Casa Esperanza Recovered Hours After It Was Stolen

The homeless shelter's cart was snatched while a guard made daily rounds on Santa Barbara's Eastside — but ran out of battery

A golf cart used by a local homeless shelter to patrol Santa Barbara’s Eastside was stolen Friday afternoon but luckily located five hours later around the corner from where it was high-jacked outside an area business. 

Santa Barbara police responded to report of the theft about 11 a.m. in the parking lot of the East Beach Batting Cages in the 200 block of South Milpas Street.

Casa Esperanza Homeless Shelter security guard Eddie Parreguire had parked the battery-powered golf cart in the lot outside the business while he chatted with the owner during his hourly rounds of the neighborhood, according to Sharon Byrne, executive director of the Milpas Community Association, which raised the $2,100 to purchase the cart.

“He came back out, and the cart was gone,” Byrne said. “Isn’t that terrible?”

Parreguire has been using the cart since May to patrol the area’s homeless, rousing them from slumber at business storefronts and preventing loitering or open abuse of alcohol and other substances.

Byrne and other MCA members quickly put out an alert and launched a search of the immediate area for the white cart, which travels up to 25 mph with a battery that lasts just a couple of hours before a charge is required.

Sure enough, the cart was located about five hours later by MCA president Alan Bleecker near the Cabrillo Bathhouse in the 1100 block of East Cabrillo Boulevard.

Byrne said Bleecker had been following the tip of someone in the local homeless community, who suspected a couple of area homeless people stole it because they’re not fond of how much faster the patrols travel around the shelter at 816 Cacique St.

“It’s awful slow,” Byrne said. “We have a couple theories. (Another) one is maybe some kids took it and had a little joy ride.

"I think everybody has learned a lesson here. Lock it down. We’re going to have to find some way to secure that puppy."

The cart doesn't require a key to start the low-humming engine, but maybe it should, Byrne said.

Besides a dead battery, she said the golf cart was thankfully found in otherwise great shape.

Authorities offered no other details, saying the investigation was ongoing.

Noozhawk staff writer Gina Potthoff 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.

Reader Comments

Noozhawk's intent is not to limit the discussion of our stories but to elevate it. Comments should be relevant and must be free of profanity and abusive language and attacks.

By posting on Noozhawk, you:

» Agree to be respectful. Noozhawk encourages intelligent and impassioned discussion and debate, but now has a zero-tolerance policy for those who cannot express their opinions in a civil manner.

» Agree not to use Noozhawk’s forums for personal attacks. This includes any sort of personal attack — including, but not limited to, the people in our stories, the journalists who create these stories, fellow readers who comment on our stories, or anyone else in our community.

» Agree not to post on Noozhawk any comments that can be construed as libelous, defamatory, obscene, profane, vulgar, harmful, threatening, tortious, harassing, abusive, hateful, sexist, racially or ethnically objectionable, or that are invasive of another’s privacy.

» Agree not to post in a manner than emulates, purports or pretends to be someone else. Under no circumstances are readers posting to Noozhawk to knowingly use the name or identity of another person, whether that is another reader on this site, a public figure, celebrity, elected official or fictitious character. This also means readers will not knowingly give out any personal information of other members of these forums.

» Agree not to solicit others. You agree you will not use Noozhawk’s forums to solicit and/or advertise for personal blogs and websites, without Noozhawk’s express written approval.

Noozhawk’s management and editors, in our sole discretion, retain the right to remove individual posts or to revoke the access privileges of anyone who we believe has violated any of these terms or any other term of this agreement; however, we are under no obligation to do so.

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.



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 >