Thanksgiving Day Catalytic Converter Thieves Arrested

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Source: Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office

Sheriff’s deputies arrested three suspects for thefts of catalytic converters on Thanksgiving. On Thursday, November 25, 2021, at 12:08 a.m., deputies responded to the 400-block of La Lata Place in Buellton for a possible theft that had just occurred. The suspects had fled the area prior to deputies’ arrival in a light-colored sedan.

Deputies canvassed the area and located the suspects and their vehicle at Calor Drive and Terrace Court. When they approach the vehicle, deputies noticed catalytic converters as well as saws and a large vehicle jack in plain view. The vehicle was occupied by three males who were subsequently arrested for the thefts.

The suspects arrested are 25-year-old Javier Luevano of Bakersfield, 21-year-old Christian Luevano of Bakersfield, and 38-year-old Fernando Esparza from Buellton. All three were arrested for conspiracy (felony), vandalism (felony), grand theft (felony), and possession of burglary tools (misdemeanor). Christian Luevano was released without bail pursuant to the local court’s extension of Emergency Rule 4. Javier Luevano was booked for additional charges of possession of a controlled substance (misdemeanor), and possession of drug paraphernalia (misdemeanor), and was also released without bail pursuant to the local court’s extension of emergency rule 4. Fernando Esparza remains in custody for these on-view charges as well an outstanding warrant from Ventura County for theft and drug-related charges.

One of the stolen catalytic converters has been returned to the owner and the remainder were stored as evidence and for safekeeping.

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yacht rocked Nov 29, 2021 08:40 PM
Thanksgiving Day Catalytic Converter Thieves Arrested

It's not in Salud's portfolio. These rules are in effect until 90 days after Gov Newsome declares the state of emergency due to the Covid pandemic has ended. That likely won't be until next Spring at the earliest, meaning the rules will be in effect no earlier than next Summer at the earliest. It could be even longer than that. Contact your local pols (e.g. Limon, Bennett) if you want to voice your desire for change. See also: https://cpoa.org/the-judicial-councils-emergency-rule-4s-bail-schedule-sets-presumptive-bail-amount-for-covered-offenses-and-violations-which-may-be-modified-by-superior-court/

SickOfLiberalBS Nov 30, 2021 06:47 PM
Thanksgiving Day Catalytic Converter Thieves Arrested

The presiding judge decided the rule is best for the county. Numerous counties have already trashed the liberal nonsense and gone back to trying to keep the piles of crap from reoffending right after they are released.

Luvaduck Nov 30, 2021 07:17 AM
Thanksgiving Day Catalytic Converter Thieves Arrested

I hope that was an attempt at sarcasm. Owners, leasers & people paying off car loans alike lose thousands of dollars to replace catalytic converters. Some 20 to 25% of drivers don't have car insurance. They are also less likely to have a garage to secure their vehicle in and more likely to be struggling to pay rent. At the very least, those caught in the act should be wearing ankle bracelets and have their vehicle impounded until they return for trial. The no-show rate is likely to be high and recapturing them adds to the cost of law enforcement.

Lucky 777 Nov 30, 2021 07:13 AM
Thanksgiving Day Catalytic Converter Thieves Arrested

SANTABARBARAOBSERVOR is absolutely correct, this criminal activity is the expression of an underclass that sees no negative result for their bad behavior. The attitude is passed from one generation to the next, and supported by insane Government regulations that reward instead of punish. And currently the educational system is failing to offer any viable alternative to a life of crime.

RHS Nov 30, 2021 09:32 AM
Thanksgiving Day Catalytic Converter Thieves Arrested

When you acknowledge an "underclass" you affirm that the US is a society that creates these "classes" and works institutionally to keep the "underclass" in its place. When society does not allow for mobility and transition these sort of crimes occur more frequently. (And by the way whom do you think if buying, recycling, reselling these converters to their profit? It ain't the "underclass" that gets rich off this. If you want to crack down on this particular opportunity go where the stolen merchandise is sold and make the recipients prove the legitimacy of their inventory.)

Babycakes Nov 30, 2021 07:54 AM
Thanksgiving Day Catalytic Converter Thieves Arrested

According to a brief internet search, 25-year-old Javier Luevano of Bakersfield has nearly 30 arrests as an adult. I thought California had some sort of long-term "career criminal" sentencing guidelines for people like Mr. Luevano. Maybe prior offenses are no longer factored into sentencing.

sacjon Nov 30, 2021 11:11 AM
Thanksgiving Day Catalytic Converter Thieves Arrested

BABYCAKES - Just curious, what site do you use? The local court websites have the most accurate info. 30 arrests should have kept this guy in jail with this one. I'm pretty liberal, but criminals like this belong in jail. I hate to say it, but a moderate, MODERATE, Republican governor might be what we need to balance out the far left policies we have been seeing in CA lately. It's time to move away from the fringes and get our state, and country, back to working together.

sacjon Nov 30, 2021 11:29 AM
Thanksgiving Day Catalytic Converter Thieves Arrested

BABY - try the superior court websites themselves. For Bakersfield, here: https://www.kern.courts.ca.gov/online_services/criminal_case_search_disclaimer

25 cases for Javier, none for Christian though. For Fernando (Buellton), use the SB County court site: https://portal.sbcourts.org/CASBPORTAL/Home/Dashboard/29

Henry Sarria Nov 30, 2021 11:12 AM
Thanksgiving Day Catalytic Converter Thieves Arrested

Here in IV we don't see too many of these cat converter thefts (that I know of) & I think I know the reason why. We got all kinds of foot traffic on the streets through all hours of the night.
If the "regulars" & "friendlies" are out & about, it makes it tougher for the "unfriendlies" to do their thing. It's kind of a deterrent of sorts.
Now, in a residential neighborhood, that ain't gonna be a thing, as foot traffic draws suspicion, but another deterrent is motion sensor triggered cameras.
Also, getting the cops to the scene asap is a must, get LEO involvement goin' on fast, that's how you get these thugs caught.

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