A UC Santa Barbara student was arrested early Saturday morning for assault and several other charges after allegedly punching an Isla Vista pastor more than 30 times in the face.
Paul Gusman, a third-year UCSB student, is charged with assault, burglary, elder abuse and dissuading a witness or victim and is being held in Santa Barbara County Jail on $500,000 bail.
The Rev. Jon-Stephen Hedges opened his door around 2:15 a.m. Saturday after hearing a man yelling for help and throwing his body against the door.
Gusman, 22, who was naked from the waist down, entered Hedges’ house and repeatedly assaulted Hedges and also hit his wife on her hand, according to the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office (SBSO).
Hedges’ wife managed to call 911 and Isla Vista Foot Patrol deputies found Gusman standing in the pastor’s front yard, appearing to be under the influence of a controlled substance, according to SBSO.
The Sheriff’s Office says the attack was random and that Gusman did not know Hedges, although the assault is under investigation.
Hedges was brought to a local hospital with major injuries, according to SBSO, but has been released and is now recovering at home.
Hedges, a UCSB graduate who has lived in Isla Vista since 1968, serves as a Campus and Community Pastor for UCSB and is an assistant pastor at St. Athanasius Orthodox Church in Goleta. He is also a volunteer chaplain for Isla Vista Foot Patrol.
Gusman is scheduled to be arraigned on May 10.