Hugo Garcia Ramirez

Hugo Garcia Ramirez

A man sought for an alleged assault led to a large police presence and road closures in northwest Santa Maria on Saturday, but the suspect wanted by officers escaped capture by fleeing before their arrival.

The incident involving an allegedly barricaded man began at approximately 1:30 a.m., and was focused on a residence on the 500 block of West Donovan Road, Santa Maria police said. 

A female juvenile victim at a nearby residence claimed that an adult male, Hugo Garcia Ramirez, 40, had just attempted to assault her, according to Detective Sgt. Jesus Valle.

“During the assault, the suspect also used a firearm to make threats against her,” Valle said. “The victim, who was uninjured, eventually escaped through the rear of the house and made it to a nearby residence where police were then notified.”

With all indications that the suspect was still inside the residence, the Santa Maria Police and Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Department SWAT teams, as well as members of the police Crisis Negotiation Team, were deployed in an attempt to apprehend the man. 

The Santa Maria Fire Department and the County Air Support Unit were dispatched for this incident. 

Roads were closed in the area as a precaution, and police had asked that people stay out of the area until the incident was resolved.

After several hours, the SWAT Teams made tactical entries into the residence and a vehicle in the driveway, Valle said. However Ramirez was not located, and police believe he fled before police had arrived at the scene.

As of Saturday evening, Ramirez still was wanted by police for suspicion of committing several felonies and was considered to be armed and dangerous.

Law enforcement officers obtained a felony warrant seeking his arrest, Valle said.

Anyone with information about his whereabouts can call the Police Department at 805.928.3781, ext. 2277. 

Noozhawk North County editor Janene Scully can be reached at Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.