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Tuesday, December 18 , 2018, 6:05 am | Fair 44º

 
 
 
 

2 Men Found Dead Near Wreckage of Car Off Gibraltar Road Above Santa Barbara

Vehicle was 500 feet off remote roadway; victims may be men reported missing last week in Lompoc

The body of one of two men found dead Sunday near the wreckage of a vehicle that plunged off Gibraltar Road above Santa Barbara is hoisted up the the roadway. Click to view larger
The body of one of two men found dead Sunday near the wreckage of a vehicle that plunged off Gibraltar Road above Santa Barbara is hoisted up the the roadway. (Ryan Cullom / Noozhawk photo)

Two bodies were found Sunday near the wreckage of a car that went over the side of Gibraltar Road in the mountains above Santa Barbara.

The vehicle matches the description of one connected to two men reported missing last week.

A hang glider spotted the wreckage near the 3400 block of Gibraltar Road and reported it upon landing, according to Santa Barbara County Fire Capt. Dave Zaniboni.

County fire crews responded to the incident at about 3:40 p.m., joined by personnel from the U.S. Forest Service and the Montecito and Santa Barbara fire departments, and helicopters from the county Air Support Unit and CalStar.

The vehicle landed some 500 feet over the side of Gibraltar Road in the area of Flores Flat.

Crews climbed down to the wreckage and located one victim, a male in his early 20s, who was pronounced dead at the scene, Zaniboni said.

He added that an expanded search turned up the body of a second victim, also a male in his 20s, approximately 100 feet from the vehicle.

Both men had been ejected from the car, Zaniboni said.

Emergenecy personnel man the rope lines Sunday to help bring two bodies back up to Gibraltar Road. The victims are believed to be two men reported missing last week out of Lompoc. Click to view larger
Emergenecy personnel man the rope lines Sunday to help bring two bodies back up to Gibraltar Road. The victims are believed to be two men reported missing last week out of Lompoc. (Ryan Cullom / Noozhawk photo)

The vehicle matched the description of a sedan reported as missing Wednesday to Lompoc police.

The sheriff’s Coroner’s Unit was dispatched to the scene, and will handle the investigation, Zaniboni said.

Members of the sheriff's Search & Rescue team were called in to assist with recovery of the bodies.

The incident is the second crash involving missing persons found dead in wrecked vehicles off local roads.

On Sept. 1, the body of a 31-year-old Lompoc man was found in a wreck off Highway 1 south of Lompoc. The dead man, Bernardo Esparza-Capuchino, had been reported missing Aug. 29.

The California Highway Patrol is investigating the cause of Esparza-Capuchino’s crash.

Noozhawk North County editor Janene Scully 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.

Onlookers watch from Gibraltar Road as emergency personnel recover the bodies of two men found near the wreckage of a car 500 feet down the hillside. The victims may be a pair reported missing last week. Click to view larger
Onlookers watch from Gibraltar Road as emergency personnel recover the bodies of two men found near the wreckage of a car 500 feet down the hillside. The victims may be a pair reported missing last week. (Ryan Cullom / Noozhawk photo)

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