Stephen Thomsen

A Goleta school teacher was arrested at Goleta Beach Park after allegedly taking inappropriate photographs of young girls, according to the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Department.

Stephen Thomsen, 28, was booked into Santa Barbara County Jail on suspicion of child annoying, Lt. Craig Bonner said.

Bail was set at $2,500.

Deputies responded to Goleta Beach at about 3:30 p.m. on a report of a suspicious person photographing female children, Bonner said.

“Deputies determined that Thomsen was in possession of a digital camera, and had used the camera to take inappropriate pictures of several young girls at Goleta Beach.,” Bonner said. “Deputies were able to locate and speak with two of the girls depicted within the photographs, along with their parents.”

Investigators determined that Thomsen is employed as a teacher by the Goleta Union School District, which was notified of his arrest, Bonner said.

Investigators were asking for the public’s assistance in identifying one additional victim, who appears to be an 8- to 9-year-old girl, who was depicted within the photographs seized by deputies, Bonner said.

Anyone who visited Goleta Beach Park during the afternoon hours of Monday, Aug. 17, who may have information that would assist in identifying this young girl, is asked to call the sheriff’s Detective Bureau at 805.681.4150.

“This incident serves to remind parents about the importance of maintaining a sufficient awareness about the activities of unknown adults in the vicinity of children,” Bonner said. “If a parent believes someone is acting suspicious around their children, the Sheriff’s Office recommends that you remove your child from the location and contact law enforcement.”

Noozhawk executive editor Tom Bolton can be reached at Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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Tom Bolton, Noozhawk Executive Editor

Noozhawk executive editor Tom Bolton can be reached at