press release - 07211601

Identity Released of Suspect Fatally Injured in Officer Involved Shooting with Santa Maria Police Officers


Santa Barbara County - July 21st, 2016

The Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office has positively identified the suspect who was fatally injured yesterday, July 20, 2016, in an officer involved shooting with Santa Maria Police Officers.  He is 31-year-old Javier Gaona of Santa Maria.  Next of kin has been notified.

The Sheriff’s Coroner’s Office is conducting a death investigation.  An autopsy is scheduled for Monday, July 25, 2016.  An official cause and manner of death is pending toxicology and lab results which will take several weeks to complete.

The Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office is conducting an investigation into the circumstances surrounding the shooting as requested by the Santa Maria Police Department.  Once the investigation is complete, it will be forwarded to the Santa Barbara County District Attorney’s Office for review to determine the lawfulness of the force used.

Questions regarding the ongoing investigation should be directed to the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office.  Questions regarding the operation or procedures of the Santa Maria Police Department should be directed to that agency.



For Media Inquires Contact PIO Kelly Hoover


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