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Suspected car thieves on the loose

The Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Department is searching for two suspected car thieves.

At 12:30 Tuesday morning, a deputy spotted a suspicious car, with a woman sitting in the passenger seat, in the parking lot at the 711 on Via Real.

When a man came out of the convenience store and got inside the car, the officer attempted to pull him over.

The driver took off and led the deputy on a chase, southbound on Highway 101. The driver exited at Linden Avenue.

He and the woman got out of the car and ran into a nearby neighborhood. Deputies brought in a K-9 unit to search the area. They also put out a reverse 911 call warning neighbors of the danger.

Meanwhile, one of the suspects tried to break into a home in the neighborhood. The couple who lives there heard the man, and called law enforcement. Dispatchers told the couple deputies were already in the area searching for the suspected car thieves.

The couple told deputies they saw the man hop over their wall, and jump over a fence across the street.

Deputies were not able to catch the suspects, but they believe the pair is from Ventura County.

Officials say the car was stolen from the Santa Paula area.


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