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Santa Barbara Man Accused of Child Molestation

A 63-year-old Santa Barbara man was arrested two weeks ago and charged with molesting five children.

On September 10, the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Department arrested Joseph Michael Hyde who was charged with lewd and lascivious acts with a child, and showing porn to a child.

In a news release dated Wednesday morning, the sheriff’s deparment said the investigation began in July. Detectives later determined Hyde allegedly molested children over several decades across the city of Santa Barbara and the south county. Investigators also believe some incidents may have taken place in the state of Oregon.

The five victims Hyde is accused of molesting range in age from 2 to 14 years old. Detectives said Hyde knew his victims. Investigators are concerned about other potential cases and urge any other victims to come forward by calling 805-681-4150 or the Department’s anonymous tipline at 805-681-4171.

Hyde was employed by the University of California-Santa Barbara until 2012.

“We can confirm that Joseph Hyde was a staff member at one of theUniversity’s off-campus technology research centers from 2006-2012. His employment ended the same year the center closed. We do not have any additional information available on his employment,” said UCSB Deputy News Editor Andrea Estrada.

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