Felony Vandalism Arrest
updated: Feb 06, 2013, 3:30 PM
Following a four month investigation, Aaron Sepulveda Nevarez, age 19, of Santa
Barbara, was arrested for multiple counts of vandalism and participation in a
criminal street gang. Nevarez is a Santa Barbara area gang member.
This case began on September 22, 2012 when Santa Barbara Police Department Gang
Suppression Team officers documented a gang-related spray paint graffiti
vandalism to a local market. The graffiti included a reference to a local gang
subset and the moniker of a gang member. On October 8, 2012 the case was
assigned to SBPD Youth Services Section Detective Gary Siegel for follow-up
investigation. Detective Siegel has been a gang officer and investigator for
over twelve years and is an expert in gang and vandalism investigations.
SBPD Gang Suppression Team and patrol officers routinely document gang-related
graffiti vandalisms, and through January 2013 took reports of several other
incidents throughout the city that bore similarities to the September 22, 2012
incident. The vandalisms consisted of writings, spray paintings, and etchings
to both public and private property; some of which were done in rival gang
territory to challenge and intimidate others. Using a variety of investigative
techniques Detective Siegel was able to link Nevarez to the gang subset and
moniker used in the vandalisms; a suspicion that was confirmed when he and other
detectives served a search warrant at Nevarez's residence and found evidence
supporting that fact in Nevarez's room.
On February 4, 2013 at 11:17 a.m. Nevarez was involved in a gang-related
disturbance on 400 Anacapa Street and stopped by Officer Andrew Freytag. Upon
learning that Nevarez was being detained Detective Siegel responded to the scene
and arrested Nevarez for six counts of vandalism (three felony and three
misdemeanor) and participation in a criminal street gang. When interviewed
Nevarez admitted to committing the aforementioned acts of vandalism and to his
membership in a street gang. Nevarez was booked into Santa Barbara County Jail
with a bail amount of $110,000.00.
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