Tuesday, October 23 , 2018, 2:47 pm | Fair 70º

 
 
 
 

Suspected Car Thief Shot With ‘Less-Lethal’ Round Before Being Arrested

Santa Barbara police say driver and female companion were wanted in connection with two vehicle thefts

A car-theft suspect is taken into custody Monday by Santa Barbara police after a brief pursuit. The suspect, identified as Isaiah Ramirez Alexander, 30, was shot with a ‘less-lethal’ bean bag round before being arrested. Click to view larger
A car-theft suspect is taken into custody Monday by Santa Barbara police after a brief pursuit. The suspect, identified as Isaiah Ramirez Alexander, 30, was shot with a ‘less-lethal’ bean bag round before being arrested. (John Palminteri / KEYT News photo)

Two suspected car thieves were arrested at gunpoint Monday after a brief pursuit that ended with the driver being shot with a "less-lethal" round, according to the Santa Barbara Police Department.

At about 11:15 a.m., police investigators received information that a man wanted in connected with recent vehicle thefts might be in the area, Sgt. Todd Johnson told Noozhawk.

A short time later patrol officers located a stolen vehicle and tried to make a traffic stop at the southbound onramp to Highway 101 at La Cumbre Road.

However, the Volkswagen sedan sped away down the freeway, reaching speeds up to 80 mph, Johnson said.

The driver, identified as Isaiah Ramirez Alexander, 30, exited at Mission Street and headed west, then turned right onto Modoc Road, and eventually pulled into an apartment building parking lot on Kentia Avenue, Johnson said.

Alexander, who officers believed may have been armed, refused to exit the vehicle, and was trying to maneuver it in the parking lot, Johnson said, adding that officers feared he might try to ram a patrol car.

He eventually stopped moving the vehicle but remained uncooperative.

At that point, Alexander jumped from the vehicle and tried to flee on foot, and was shot with a “less-lethal” bean bag round.

He was knocked to the ground by the impact and was taken into custody.

A car-theft suspect is taken into custody Monday by Santa Barbara police after a brief pursuit. Click to view larger
A car-theft suspect is taken into custody Monday by Santa Barbara police after a brief pursuit.  (Zack Warburg / Noozhawk photo)

Alexander sustained minor injuries when he was shot with the bean bag, Johnson said. He was examined by paramedics, but declined medical treatment.

A passenger in the vehicle, Stephanie Lynn Lean, 36, also was uncooperative, and had to be forcibly removed, Johnson said.

Alexander was booked into Santa Barbara County Jail on two counts of vehicle theft, felony evading arrest, a felony warrant, and other theft- and drug-related charges, Johnson said.

Lean was booked for vehicle theft, a misdemeanor warrant and other charges, he added.

Police did not say whether they discovered a weapon during the arrest.

No officers were injured in the incident.

Noozhawk executive editor Tom Bolton 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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