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Sheriff’s Department to Conduct ATV Enforcement Near Riverbend in Lompoc

In response to a large number of complaints from Santa Barbara County residents living near the riverbed in the unincorporated area of Lompoc, the Sheriff’s Department will be strictly enforcing three county ordinances that prohibit motor vehicles from driving on unimproved public or private property.

Numerous property owners have recently expressed concern over off-road vehicles being operated in the riverbed at various times of the day and night. The complaints include noise from the vehicles, and bonfires and campfires being held in the area. There has also been an increased amount of trash left behind and vandalism of private property, including crop damage and cut fences and gates.

Additionally, cattle have been injured and let loose from their pastures. There has also been a large number of drug- and alcohol-related offenses related to the bon/campfires. Most often the subjects involved in committing crimes in the area accessed the private property illegally on an ATV.

The Sheriff’s Department wants to notify the public that starting this Sunday, Dec. 28, and over the next several weeks, deputies will conduct a riverbed enforcement of Santa Barbara County and state ordinances. The targeted area will be the unincorporated area of the Santa Ynez River bordering the City of Lompoc.

County Ordinances 24-28, 24-29 and 24-30 were amended in 2008 to extend the prohibition of operating motor vehicles on unimproved private property to also include unimproved public property. Individuals who are found in violation of these ordinances or of committing other crimes in the riverbed area will be cited and or arrested and could face potential prosecution.

— Kelly Hoover is a public information officer for the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Department.


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