An early morning fight left a man fighting for his life on Monday. Police say his attackers may be gang affiliated.
Santa Barbara Police Department spokesman Anthony Wagner said it’s “far too early, to associate a statistically significant uptick to this type of crime.” He added that the victim does not have a gang affiliation himself.
“This is someone who happened to be in the area. He did not have an association with anyone,” said Mr. Wagner.
According to a report from the Santa Barbara Police Department, at 3:36 a.m. on Monday, officers responded to reports of a fight-in-progress at Ortega Park involving four subjects.
Officers found the victim, a man in his 40s, and determined he suffered multiple stab wounds. He was transported by medics to Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital with life threatening injuries. His current status was not available Tuesday afternoon.
Officers say the victim saw a group of males vandalizing an area of the park.
“He (the victim) basically said ‘hey you guys need to get out of here’. They took exception to that and it led to his stabbing,” said Mr. Wagner.
The SBPD report revealed the group responded with profanity and verbally affiliated themselves with a criminal street gang during the attack.
After the stabbing, the suspects fled the scene. The victim was able to provide a thorough and detailed description of the suspects.
Less than an hour after the attack, a 14-year-old juvenile attempted to check into Cottage Hospital with a severe laceration to his hand.
The SBPD Investigative Unit examined the crime scene and determined there were several pieces of evidence that linked the juvenile to the stabbing.
He was arrested and has been charged with attempted murder with a felony gang enhancement SBPD officials say.
The District Attorney is waiting on police reports to determine whether or not the juvenile will be charged as an adult.