Santa Maria

Police investigating gang-related shooting

The Santa Maria Police Department is investigating an apparent gang-related shooting that left one man critically injured early Monday morning.

According to police officials, officers responded to a report of a shooting at 12:44 a.m. Monday in the 900 block of West El Camino Street in Santa Maria.

When officers arrived, they found an adult male suffering from a single gunshot wound to the chest.

The unidentified man was taken to Marian Regional Medical Center where he is listed in critical condition.

Police officials said they believe this incident is gang-related, and they are investigating the incident as an attempted homicide.

Investigators are requesting that anyone with information about this crime contact the Santa Maria Police Department at 928-3781, ext. 2278.

Santa Barbara County

Small plane runs off runway, spills fuel at Santa Ynez Valley Airport

A small plane ran off the runway Monday afternoon at Santa Ynez Valley Airport, causing no injuries but resulting in a small fuel spill, according to the Santa Barbara County Fire Department.

One engine was dispatched to the airport about 4:11 p.m. for a hazardous materials spill after fuel leaked from the aircraft.

“They went out Code 2 since the passengers were out of the plane and there were no injuries,” said Mike Eliason, public information officer for County Fire.

“The plane just ran long and kind of skidded off the end of the runway into the dirt, and there was a very minor fuel spill, not very much at all.”

Santa Barbara County

Lompoc High School suffers power outage

Lompoc High School was without power for much of the school day Monday before the electricity was restored around 12:30 p.m.

The outage is believed to have been caused by a faulty underground electrical cable, according to a Lompoc city spokesperson. School remained in session.

The power outage at the school was reported to city electrical crews shortly before 6 a.m., according to the city. Crews immediately went to work following that report.

“It’s unclear yet whether the problem was storm-related,” read a statement from the city, referencing Sunday night’s storm that brought rain and lightning to the area.

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During the outage, the city worked closely with Lompoc Unified School District officials, according to the city. LUSD administrators notified parents of Lompoc High School students about the situation.

Emergency generators were brought to the school cafeteria to ensure food was kept safe, and portable toilets were also delivered, the city reported.

Santa Barbara County

Encino girl killed in Hwy. 101 rollover near Buellton on Sunday

A 12-year-old girl was killed Sunday when the driver of a vehicle southbound on Highway 101, south of Highway 154 near Buellton, lost control in heavy rain and rolled the vehicle into the center median.

Erasmo Vargas, 35, of Encino, was driving the 2003 Lincoln Navigator at about 75 mph according to the California Highway Patrol, when the single-vehicle crash occurred.

The girl, also of Encino, was ejected into the northbound fast lane and was pronounced dead at the scene.

Four other passengers, all from Encino, were in the vehicle. Alma Rosa Vargas, 37, reported minor pain after the crash, while three children aged 7, and two 4-year-olds, were not injured.

The fast lane of northbound Highway 101 was closed for about an hour as a result of the crash.

The crash is under investigation, but neither drugs nor alcohol are considered to be a factor, according to the CHP.