press release - 05261601

MISSING Pearl Pinson, 15



Pearl Pinson, 15




Suspect (Now Deceased) and Suspect Vehicle - Photo courtesy Mike Eliason @ SBCFire


Suspect (Now Deceased) and Suspect Vehicle

Photo courtesy Mike Eliason @ SBCFire



Suspect Shootout with Deputies


Suspect Shootout with Deputies

Search Continues for Kidnapping Victim
Coroner's Office Confirms Suspects Indentity


Santa Barbara - UPDATED 05/27/2016


The Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Coroner’s Office has positively identified the decedent as 19-year-old Fernando Castro of Vallejo, California.  Next of kin has been notified.  The Coroner’s Office is conducting an extensive death investigation.

The whereabouts of kidnapping victim, 15-year-old Pearl Pinson of Vallejo, are still unknown and finding her is the number one priority at this time.  Investigators from the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office, Solano County Sheriff’s Office and FBI worked together throughout the night to process the crime scenes in Solvang and gather any potential evidence that may assist in finding Pearl.  The agencies will continue to work closely together to share information and follow leads in the case.

At this time, the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office has no information to indicate that Pinson is in Santa Barbara County. 

The Sheriff’s Office is asking anyone with information regarding this case or the whereabouts of Pearl Pinson to call the Solano County Sheriff’s Office’s “Pearl Pinson Tip-Line” at 707-784-1963.  




Public's Help Sought to Help Locate Missing Teenage Kidnapping Victim


Santa Barbara - May 26th, 2016

The Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office is working with the Solano County Sheriff’s Office, California Highway Patrol and the FBI to locate 15-year-old kidnapping victim Pearl Pinson, of Vallejo, after the suspect in her abduction was located, pursued and killed in an exchange of gunfire with Sheriff’s deputies.  The victim has not been located and remains outstanding.

At approximately 3:10 p.m. today, California Highway Patrol Officers received a report of a vehicle matching the description of the suspect vehicle from an Amber Alert wanted in the kidnapping of the 15-year-old Solano County resident.  The 1997 Gold Saturn sedan was located traveling southbound on Highway 101, north of Los Alamos, in Santa Barbara County.  CHP Officers went in pursuit of the vehicle and were assisted by a helicopter from the Santa Barbara County Sheriff/Fire Air Support Unit.  At one point in the pursuit the suspect drove the wrong way on the freeway before ultimately exiting in Buellton.  Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s deputies joined in the pursuit, which went east on Highway 246 through the Cities of Buellton and Solvang and then through a residential area. The pursuit ended adjacent to a mobile home park in the 100 block of Val Verde, when the suspect crashed into a barricade at approximately 3:34 p.m. The suspect shot at pursuing deputies, one of whom returned fire. 

The suspect then fled and broke into a nearby mobile home, barricading himself inside.  A female resident escaped from the home and was fortunately not injured.  The suspect then stole a grey Toyota Tundra truck from the residence and attempted to drive away. The suspect was confronted by deputies and an exchange of gunfire occurred. The vehicle was subsequently approached and the suspect was found dead inside, having received multiple gunshot wounds.  A handgun was recovered at the scene. Coroner’s detectives are in the process of confirming the identity of the suspect and notifying the next of kin.

As is protocol in any officer-involved shooting, an investigation is underway to account for the shots that were fired and determine if the shooting was within policy.

No law enforcement officers or innocent civilians were injured during this confrontation.

The number one priority at this stage of the investigation is locating the kidnapping victim, whose photographs are attached. Pearl Pinson is a white female, 5’ 3” tall, 130 pounds with brown hair (dyed green at the time of the abduction) and green eyes.  She has a metallic piercing below her left lower lip and was last seen wearing a grey sweater, black leggings and in possession of a black and turquoise backpack. Anyone with information as to her whereabouts should call 911 immediately.

For additional information see the Solano County Sheriff’s Office press release on this crime on their Facebook page at


For Media Inquires Contact PIO Kelly Hoover


Business Hours: (805) 681-4100

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