Wife and Son Killed in Tarzan Actor's Hope Ranch Home

Wife and Son Killed in Tarzan Actor's Hope Ranch Home title=
Wife and Son Killed in Tarzan Actor's Hope Ranch Home
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Law enforcement on the scene (Photo: John Palminteri / KEYT)
Update by edhat staff
2:40 p.m., October 16, 2019

Sheriff’s Office Confirms Identities in Hope Ranch Incident

At 8:15 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 15, 2019, the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office responded to a 911 call at the home of actor Ron Ely. Upon arrival, deputies contacted Ron Ely and discovered his wife, Valerie Lundeen Ely, 62, deceased with multiple stab wounds inside the home. While on scene, deputies identified the suspect as the Elys’ son, 30-year-old Cameron Ely.

Ron Ely and Valerie Lundeen Ely (Photo: Facebook)

Deputies searched the residence and surrounding area for Cameron Ely. During the search, the suspect was located outside the home. He posed a threat and in response 4 deputies fired their service weapons at the suspect, fatally wounding him. No deputies were injured during the confrontation with the suspect.

The Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office is conducting criminal, coroner’s, and administrative investigations of this incident. Autopsies of both the victim and the suspect are pending. The names of the involved deputies will be released at a later date.

Aerial photo of the Ely home at 4141 Mariposa Drive in Hope Ranch (Photo: Zillow)

Update by edhat staff
7:00 a.m., October 16, 2019

Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Deputies have shot and killed a suspect believed to have killed a Hope Ranch woman in the home of former "Tarzan' actor Ron Ely Tuesday evening.

The woman who was murdered is believed to be Ely's wife since 1984, former Miss Florida Valerie Lundeen, although police have not confirmed the identity of the victim. Together they have three children, Kirsten, Kaitland, and Cameron. Ely, 81, is believed to be safe and recovering at a local hospital.

The suspect's identity has yet to be released and it is not yet known how the suspect is connected to the residents.

Ely played a range of television roles in the 1960s but was best known for "Tarzan," which aired from 1966 to 1968. He also had recurring or guest roles in notable shows such as "The Love Boat," "Wonder Woman," and a revival of "Sea Hunt" in the 1980s. He hosted the Miss America pageant in 1980 and 1981 before retiring from acting in 2001.

Ron Ely (center) on the set of "Tarzan" in 1968 (Photo: NBC Universal / Wikipedia)

Update by Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office
2:45 a.m., October 16, 2019

Sheriff’s Office Discovers Apparent Homicide in Hope Ranch Home -Suspect Fatally Wounded in Confrontation with Deputies

At 8:15 PM on Tuesday, October 15, 2019, the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office - Public Safety Dispatch Center received a 9-1-1 call reporting a family disturbance at 4141 Mariposa Dr. in Hope Ranch, CA.  Deputies responded to the residence and discovered a female deceased inside the home, the victim of an apparent homicide.  A disabled elderly male resident of the home was also located and transported to an area hospital for evaluation.  

Deputies immediately searched the home and secured a perimeter of the surrounding area.  A shelter-in-place alert was sent to area residents advising them to remain in their homes as deputies searched for the homicide suspect.  During the search, deputies located the suspect on the property of the homicide.  Deputies attempted to gain verbal control of the suspect, however he presented a threat to them.  In defense of the threat posed by the suspect, several deputies fired their service weapons at the suspect, fatally wounding him.  No deputies were injured during the confrontation with the suspect.    

The Sheriff’s Office is conducting a criminal investigation into the homicide, processing the crime scene and working to identify the relationships of the persons involved in the incident.  The deputies involved in the shooting will be placed on paid administrative leave, which is routine following any officer involved shooting.

No additional information is available for release at this time, as this is an active and ongoing criminal investigation.  The Sheriff’s Office will release additional information as it becomes available.

Update by edhat staff
9:30 p.m., October 15, 2019

Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Deputies are searching the Hope Ranch area for a homicide suspect after a woman was found dead.

Deputies responded to the 4100 block of Mariposa Drive Tuesday after 8:00 p.m. for a reported domestic dispute. Upon arrival they discovered a woman's body inside the residence.

Residents in the area were asked to shelter in place as Deputies searched for the suspect. 

Further details have not been released at this time. Any additional information will be added to this article.

By an edhat reader
9:00 p.m., October 15, 2019

Did anyone else receive a shelter in place alert in Hope Ranch? My mom just texted and said she received an alert to stay inside as police look for a suspect. Any information? She's near Estrella Drive and Mariposa. 

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a-1571238864 Oct 16, 2019 08:14 AM
Wife and Son Killed in Tarzan Actor's Hope Ranch Home

@8:08, Roger also commented on Facebook there is a history of 415's (domestic disturbances) AND medical emergencies at this house. Check yo'self before ya wreck o'self.

JB86 Oct 15, 2019 11:33 PM
Wife and Son Killed in Tarzan Actor's Hope Ranch Home

Per KEYT, and Lt Eric Raney, Sheriff's spokesperson, the home is owned by Ron Ely, who is apparently not a suspect and is OK. The suspect, who deputies didn't ID was shot and killed by deputies. More tomorrow, I'm sure.

a-1571202767 Oct 15, 2019 10:12 PM
Wife and Son Killed in Tarzan Actor's Hope Ranch Home

Noozhawk reports that law enforcement know who the suspect is and that LE considers it a "family situation." I.e., a domestic affair and that others aren't in danger. Keep Fido close and keep those doors and windows locked, just in case.

JB86 Oct 15, 2019 10:10 PM
Wife and Son Killed in Tarzan Actor's Hope Ranch Home

Shelter in place will be called off momentarily. A subject appears to have been shot to death on Mariposa. Sketchy info, but Sheriff's on scene called out 'Shots Fired.' Medics declared 11-44 sometime later. Unknown who shot whom. This is fragmentary information off the scanner; don't take it to the bank yet.


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