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Santa Maria business owner disarms carjacker following officer involved-shooting and car chase

SANTA BARBARA COUNTY, Calif. – After a business owner disarmed a man threatening him with a handgun, police arrested the 24-year-old Santa Maria man following an extensive chase involving an armed carjacking, burglary and an officer-involved shooting.

The Santa Maria Police Department said officers responded to an armed carjacking call around 5:30 p.m. Thursday in the 200 block of E. McElhaney Ave.

The 24-year-old stole the victim's car at gunpoint and drove away, according to SMPD.

A patrol officer found the stolen car nearby and attempted to pull it over, but the Santa Maria man drove off, starting the car chase through the city.

Police said the chase stopped because the 24-year-old crashed the stolen car in the parking lot of a business located in the 800 block of W. Cook St.

The man got out of the car with a handgun, leading to the officer-involved shooting according to SMPD. The officer involved in this shooting has since been placed on administrative leave pending investigation.

The 24-year-old then fled into a nearby business where he then threatened the business owner with the handgun.

However, during a struggle between the two, police said the owner disarmed the man.

SMPD said officers were then able to take the Santa Maria man into custody without further incident, arresting him for armed carjacking, evading, false imprisonment, burglary and assault with a deadly weapon.

In addition, the police department said investigators discovered that the handgun used by the carjacker was in fact a BB gun that closely resembled a realistic firearm.

The Santa Maria Police Department said that as all officer-involved shootings are thoroughly investigated and reviewed internally, the Santa Barbara County Sheriff detectives will also be conducting a criminal investigation into the actions of the officers, followed by another review by the District Attorney's Office.

SMPD said this investigation is ongoing, so no further information will be released at this time.

However, questions can be directed to Commander Dan Cohen, at 805-928-3781, ext. 1234.

Article Topic Follows: Santa Maria - Lompoc - North County

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Lily Dallow

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