press release - 03041701

Jonathan Highley, 35


Jonathan Highley, 35



Mayra Perez, 29


Mayra Perez, 29

Homicide Suspect and Spouse Arrested and Victims Identity Released

Orcutt - March 5th, 2017



The Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office is releasing the identity of the victim who was shot and killed yesterday morning, March 4, 2017, at approximately 1:30 a.m. in the back parking lot of Elmer’s located in the 100 block of E. Clark Avenue. The victim is 43-year-old Anthony Steven San Juan of Santa Maria.  Next of kin was notified.

During the course of the investigation, Sheriff’s detectives developed information that pointed to a possible suspect.  The suspect was identified as being 35-year-old Jonathan David Highley of Orcutt. After the crime occurred, surveillance by Sheriff’s detectives was established in the neighborhood where the suspect had reportedly fled.  Shortly after 9:00 a.m. yesterday, Sheriff’s detectives took Highley into custody as he was leaving his residence with his wife and four children.  He was transported to the Santa Maria Sheriff’s Station.  After an intensive and comprehensive investigation, which included the processing of the crime scene, the gathering of physical evidence and the interviews of several witnesses, Highley was arrested for the Homicide of the victim.

At this time, the relationship between the suspect and the victim is unknown as is the motivation for the murder. 

Highley was booked at the Santa Barbara County Jail on charges of murder, preventing or dissuading a witness by force or threat, assault with a firearm on a person, threatening a crime with intent to terrorize and intentional/personal discharge of a firearm in commitment of a felony causing death.  A bail of two million dollars has been requested.

Highley’s wife, 29-year-old Mayra Perez, was also arrested and booked on an accessory charge.  At this time, the Sheriff’s Office does not believe there are any other suspects involved.

Child Protective Services responded and has custody of the children.   




Homicide Investigation and Search for Suspect


Orcutt - March 4th, 2017


At approximately 1:30 a.m. this morning, March 4, 2017, Sheriff’s deputies responded to a report of a man with a gun at Elmer’s located in the 100 block of E. Clark Avenue in Orcutt.  As deputies were responding, they received additional information of a male down with a gunshot wound.  When deputies and paramedics arrived, they located the victim of a gunshot wound and determined he was deceased.


An emergency notification alert was sent to neighbors in the immediate area notifying them to shelter in place.


If you have any information, you are asked to call the Santa Barbara County Public Safety Dispatch Center at 805-683-2724 or to leave an anonymous tip call 805-681-4171.


The Sheriff’s Coroner’s Bureau is in the process of positively identifying the victim and making next of kin notification.  No information regarding the victim will be released at this time.


For Media Inquires Contact PIO Kelly Hoover


Business Hours: (805) 681-4100

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