Body Found in Santa Barbara’s Mission Creek Identified, Coroner States Accidental Drowning

Santa Barbara Police and Firefighters retrieve a body found in Mission Creek on February 19, 2024 (Photo: Santa Barbara Police Department)

Authorities have released the identity of the body found in Mission Creek last week.

The Santa Barbara County Sheriff-Coroner Bureau stated the decedent is 45-year-old Danielle Montijo from the Ventura and Santa Barbara areas. Her death has been ruled an accidental drowning.

Santa Barbara Police and firefighters responded to the area of Bath and W. Cota Streets on February 19. CBS News reporters discovered the body near a tree around 9:00 a.m. while reporting on the storm prompting emergency officials to arrive on the scene, according to reports.

Fire Department personnel conducted a recovery operation to retrieve the decedent, who was entangled in the trees off the bank of the creek, according to Police Sergeant Ethan Ragsdale.

The Police Department made it clear foul play was not suspected while reminding residents to stay away from flooded creeks and waterways. “Though they may be interesting to look at, always keep a safe distance. Your safety is our top priority,” SBPD states.

Two major storm systems brought over 12 inches of rain to the South Coast last week that caused flooding and rapidly filling waterways. This was the third death reported in local creeks last week.

The Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office announced 86-year-old Peter Knudsen Miller was found down the creek from his vehicle at the Maria Ygnacia Creek crossing. Miller was reported missing and at-risk the day before he was found. Additionally, 54-year-old Shane Craig Bandy of Carpinteria was found in Toro Creek. The investigation is ongoing but authorities do not suspect foul play.

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February 19, 2024: Body Found in Mission Creek, Police Do Not Suspect Foul Play

Edhat Staff

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