stabbing scene State Street
A man was transported to Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital in critical condition Tuesday afternoon after being stabbed on State Street in downtown Santa Barbara, according to police.  (Peter Hartmann / Noozhawk photo)

A man was stabbed and critically injured in a fight on State Street in downtown Santa Barbara on Tuesday afternoon, according to Santa Barbara police spokesman Anthony Wagner.

Wagner told Noozhawk two men got into a fight at about 12:30 p.m. near the intersection of State and De La Guerra streets, and one man stabbed the other.

The stabber fled north on State Street, riding a bike, and police were actively searching for him as of 5 p.m., Wagner said.

“The subject is outstanding, and we’re following up several potential leads with regard to that subject, and hopefully we’ll be able to bring him into custody shortly,” he said.

The stabbing victim was transported to Santa Barbara Cottager Hospital in critical condition, he said.

Two of the city’s Downtown Ambassadors were the first ones to arrive on the scene, Wagner said, and “provided life-saving pressure to the wound” while they waited for paramedics and police officers to arrive.

As to the motive for the stabbing, Wagner said police investigators do not believe the fight was gang-related, and said there does not appear to be a threat to the general public.

“It’s quite possible that the two males knew one another,” he said.

Police were also collecting video evidence and photos from people near the scene who witnessed the fight, Wagner added. 

No further details were available.

Check back with Noozhawk for updates to this story.

Noozhawk managing editor Giana Magnoli can be reached at Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.