Warning: This article contains graphic content relating to sexual assault.
The Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office has a suspect in custody who is connected to a string of sexual assault cases, including sexual battery and indecent exposure, over the past week in Isla Vista, according to a press release.
The Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office (SBSO) identified the suspect as 30-year-old Michael Angelo Auclair, a resident of cities Port Hueneme and Lompoc, California. He was arrested on March 5 at approximately 3:50 p.m. and is now being held at Santa Barbara County Jail with his bail set at $1 million.
“Sheriff’s Office team members have fielded dozens of calls from concerned residents, parents, and community members,” the SBSO press release stated. “One of the frequent concerns has been reports of ongoing attempted kidnappings where the victim is intentionally harmed.”
“There are no verified reports of kidnapping or attempted kidnapping incidents after the string of crimes on February 28, 2022,” the press release continued.
The Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office and UC Santa Barbara Police Department conducted a search late Monday evening near Storke Road and El Colegio Road, but the suspect evaded law enforcement. SBSO and UCPD called off their search with air support and K-9 units after three hours and switched to an investigation.
SBSO eventually located and arrested the suspect with the help of community informants and home security video footage that captured the suspect in his vehicle, according to the press release.
The investigation remains ongoing, and SBSO encourages people with information to contact their detectives at (805)-681-4150 or through their anonymous tip line at (805)-681-4171.