Transient Arrested for Threatening Child with Knife

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Update by Santa Barbara Police Department
July 30, 2021

On July 28, 2021, around 4:00 pm, dispatchers from the Santa Barbara Police Department received several 9-1-1 calls about a male subject brandishing a knife in the area of State Street and Anapamu Street.

It was reported the suspect, Robert J. Tobarro, a 58-year-old transient, was making verbal threats for an unknown reason, towards a family that was visiting from out of town. Tobarro then started following the family as they walked down State Street and approached the Santa Barbara Museum of Art. Tobarro started directly making threats towards a young boy in the family. The father of the child began to intervene when Tobarro pulled out from his pocket a fixed blade knife. According to witnesses, Tobarro continually made threats while following the family when bystanders called 9-1-1 to report the incident.

Multiple Officers quickly responded to the area and were able to contact the victims and Tobarro who was detained on scene. Witnesses and the victims reported Tobarro had become verbally aggressive and appeared intoxicated. When the victims attempted to avoid Tobarro, he became agitated and made threats towards the victims with the knife in hand.

Tobarro was placed under arrest after the investigation was completed. Tobarro was booked in Santa Barbara County Jail for, 422 PC – Criminal Threats (felony), 273a PC – Child Endangerment (felony), and 417 PC – Brandishing a Weapon (misdemeanor). He is currently being held on $100,000 bail.

The victims were fortunately not physically harmed during this incident.

Reported by Scanner Andrew
4:08 p.m., July 28, 2021

Police are responding with lights and sirens for a transient brandishing a knife near Old Navy on State Street

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Byzantium Jul 30, 2021 05:00 PM
Transient Arrested for Threatening Child with Knife

ACLU "took away" the power to commit. ReCall candidate John Cox has put reform of the Lantern-Petris-Short Act that evolved from the ACLU case into the campaign arena. We know it needs to be reformed. And intentional disinformation about this act and its origins needs to be stopped dead in its tracks .No "Reagan" did not open all the mental care institutions - ACLU sued the state and BigPharm promised they could cure these mental impairment issues with drugs. That is who forced the state care institutions to be emptied. The rest is a very sordid history of failure by every single Democrat super-majority voters have elected ever since. When have you heard Senator Monique Limon ever address any of these concerns. Did Assembly Member Michael Bennett get your vote addressing these concerns? Stop the lies, and abject failure we are not forced to now accept in the name of "civil liberties". Reform the Lantern-Petris-Short Act now - take the hand cuffs off the police and put them where they belong - on violent, threatening street people.

ChemicalSuperFreak Jul 30, 2021 05:19 PM
Transient Arrested for Threatening Child with Knife

We are well beyond the point of no return. Remember by in Feb of 2020, when the elderly couple and their 13-year old grandson were similarly attacked by the young transient couple on State Street? The couple were arrested, released and then less than 2 months later they were re-arrested for the murder of a woman in Santa Cruz. Over 1 year later and nothing has changed. Here's a link to the old Edhat article:

sacjon Aug 03, 2021 12:26 PM
Transient Arrested for Threatening Child with Knife

BYZANTIUM - is there any local topic you are not an expert in and spend all day complaining about? How about sailboat races? Metal detecting on East Beach? Soft vs hard tacos? Seagull behavior? IPA vs lagers?

dukemunson Aug 03, 2021 12:42 PM
Transient Arrested for Threatening Child with Knife

Sac - That's a trick's a tie! There are times and situations where Lagers are obviously the best choice...and other times where an IPA is clearly the best! (And seagulls are the worst).

Basicinfo805 Jul 30, 2021 04:35 PM
Transient Arrested for Threatening Child with Knife

We stopped going downtown years ago. Everytime we go through there it’s like a bad joke. Really pathetic situation. No place for kids or families to be. Art museum? Library? Ha! No frickin’ way. So sad. What a waste. Vote appropriately, that’s all I can say. Maybe we’ll start getting somewhere if we change the “leadership” at city hall.

biguglystick Jul 31, 2021 02:30 PM
Transient Arrested for Threatening Child with Knife

Yep. It's really awful. We don't have kids, but we don't go downtown either, just because we don't want to get harrassed or have smoke blown everywhere. No smoking city? HA! That's a joke. It isn't enforced.

Ahchooo Jul 30, 2021 06:17 PM
Transient Arrested for Threatening Child with Knife

I go downtown occasionally. Went often before the pandemic. I’ve never been harassed. But I do favor some action to get the crazies off the street. It’s not like they’re happy being there. They’re disturbed, they need help.

Kew Jul 30, 2021 06:40 PM
Transient Arrested for Threatening Child with Knife

When I'm on State St. , I have to scurry through there like a Mad Hatter! This area used to be the classiest part of the downtown corridor. Now, it has more bums and urine than anywhere else in Santa Barbara!

Kew Jul 31, 2021 06:37 PM
Transient Arrested for Threatening Child with Knife

Did you forget about the fixed-blade knife? What? What kind of person threatens a child or family with a weapon. He knows he's a looser, that's why he's schnockered & drugged to begin with. He doesn't give a whit about anyone or anything except the sick circus that's going on in his head, and he's full-on aggressive because he has a chip on his shoulder. He doesn't care if he ruins anyone's day. Sadly, many of these street folk, are known to die within 3-6 months of being offered FREE housing, because behind closed doors, they drink & drug themselves into oblivion if no one's watchin'. The housing folk don't say much about this, except to say that, miraculously, the homeless numbers are declining. Well, they are declining because many are dying once they are housed. Devil's in the details, every time. These "house the homeless" administrators are getting paid BIG BUCKS to get these people off freeway on/off ramps, Milpas, State St., Hollister, Linden Ave. I've noticed that Housing the Homeless has become big business in the past decade. It used to be the Literacy Program, now it's House the Homeless. Hey, and while you're all out there wanting to help the problem du jour. . How about doing something for seniors! The Silver Tsunami is HERE! House that!

Rypert Johnson Aug 02, 2021 10:19 AM
Transient Arrested for Threatening Child with Knife

KEW, all good points made, the part you mentioned about "they drink & drug themselves into oblivion" is a real point, but also what gives the "defenders of the faith" the "mental illness" excuse to lessen the penalties for the bad behavior we've been enduring as a community.
It is NOT mental illness, it is brain damage and the worst part is it is self induced. Calling these individuals "mentally ill" is an insult to people truly suffering from mental illness.
These people chose to do the chemicals that in turn damaged their brains, it was a choice and it was a choice implemented by them.
Mental illness is something that happens from within with no choice of ours. Stop calling these vagrants "mentally ill" and you will see that the problem will be addressed accordingly.

Rypert Johnson Aug 02, 2021 10:00 AM
Transient Arrested for Threatening Child with Knife

SWARFMASTER, that is the policy in other places, but here, Homeless Inc. makes sure we're kinder and gentler to the "houseless neighbors" doing all this kind of stuff. SHIP EM'!

Rypert Johnson Aug 02, 2021 09:59 AM
Transient Arrested for Threatening Child with Knife

JAK, eloquently and accurately stated. Why do we tolerate the untolerable? Better yet, who has decided that is the way it should be? Can we start with Homeless Inc.?

Chip of SB Aug 03, 2021 10:48 AM
Transient Arrested for Threatening Child with Knife

It’s a shame that it’s no longer safe to take your family to downtown Santa Barbara. Nothing lasts forever, and this is the new direction the voters have chosen. However, there are also many up and coming towns and destinations nearby that were barely on the map back in the old days when the downtown area used to be clean and safe. I would strongly advise anyone planning to visit this area or take the family out for an afternoon to explore the multitude of great options outside of downtown Santa Barbara.


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