Authorities with the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office are investigating a violent attempted rape in Isla Vista that occurred on Oct. 3, 2018.
Investigators say a 22-year-old Santa Barbara City College student was walking near the southwest corner of Camino Pescadero at Picasso Road at about 12:15 a.m. when an unknown individual emerged from the nearby bushes and jumped in front of her.
A statement from the Sheriff’s Office describes the attack:
“The suspect punched the victim in the face and head, grabbed her hair, covered her mouth and pulled her towards the bushes. The suspect then attempted to pull her shirt off. The victim screamed and fought back, scratching and punching the suspect, and managed to escape. She ran to her nearby residence and contacted a friend for help who then called 911.”
Deputies and UC Santa Barbara police officers from the Isla Vista Foot Patrol searched the area for the suspect but were unable to locate him.
The suspect is described as a male in his 20’s, approximately 5-feet 9-inches tall with a thin build. He had dark skin and dark facial hair. He was wearing a dark hoodie over his head and dark pants at the time of the crime.
Anyone with information about this violent attack is urged to call the Sheriff’s Criminal Investigations Division at 805-681-4150 or leave an anonymous tip at 805-681-4171.
Authorities believe the 22-year-old would have been raped if she had not managed to fight off her attacker and get to a safe place. They remind the community to use the buddy system and avoid walking alone, especially at night.
“If you ever feel that you are being followed or are concerned about a person or situation, trust your instincts and run/walk to a well-lit or more populated area. If you are going out alone, make sure that someone knows where you are going, who you will be with and when you are expected to return,” said a Sheriff’s Office statement on the case.
The UCSB Police Department has a safety escort program that is free to use as a safe alternative to walking alone at night. Call 805-893-2000 to request a CSO escort.