Man accused of additional sex crimes
BUELLTON — A Buellton man is now facing 42 felony charges and is accused of inappropriate sexual contact with boys.
Gregory Scott Ray, 54, pleaded not guilty in Santa Barbara Superior Court Thursday to the additional charges. The former yearbook consultant was previously accused of incidents involving 12 victims and has now been charged with crimes involving 14 boys, according to the Santa Barbara County District Attorney’s Office, which filed an amended criminal complaint in the case last week.
Mr. Ray, a former independent contractor and sales consultant for Friesens LLC, a yearbook publishing company, assisted with yearbook consulting at many school campuses in central California, from San Jose to Los Angeles counties. He was arrested on April 9, 2019, according to the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Department.
The previous complaint charged Mr. Ray with 34 criminal charges, according to authorities.
He allegedly used social media to meet and have sexual contact with boys between the ages of 13 and 17. Some of the alleged incidents occurred in Santa Barbara County, as well as Fresno and Orange counties, according to the complaint.
He has been charged with 16 counts of oral copulation, 13 counts of sodomny, three counts of sexual penetration with a foreign object, three counts of sexual battery, two counts of lewd and lascivious behavior, two counts of sending child pornography, two counts of sending harmful matter and one count of disuading a witness. He also faces several special enhancements in relation to the charges, according to the complaint.
Mr. Ray is scheduled to return to court Sept. 17 for a preliminary hearing.
— Mitchell White
Closures planned for Highway 101 widening project
CARPINTERIA — Several lane closures are planned this week as work continues on the Linden and Casitas Pass Highway 101 widening project in Carpinteria.
From 9 p.m. tonight to 5 a.m. Monday, one northbound lane will be closed from Bailard to Evans avenues. A similar closure is planned during the overnight hours Monday through Thursday. From 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Thursday, the 101 northbound offramp at Casitas Pass Road and the onramp at Linden Avenue will be closed, according to Caltrans officials.
From 10 p.m. tonight to 7 a.m. Monday, one southbound lane will be closed from Evans to Bailard avenues. A similar closure is planned during overnight hours Monday through Thursday.
From 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Thursday, the 101 southbound onramp and offramp at Casitas Pass Road will be closed, as well the offramp at Linden Avenue, officials said.
The northbound 101 onramp at Casitas Pass Road will be closed for the next five weeks. The closure will allow crews to shift northbound freeway lanes and install concrete on part of the 101.
The majority of the highway improvements are open. Via Real from the northbound 101 offramp at Casitas Pass Road over Carpinteria Creek will open near the end of the month. Motorists are advised to expect to see crews finishing up construction details throughout the project site.
Crews continue work on the new roundabout at the 101 and Linden Avenue, Via Real, Casitas Pass Road and Ogan Road. The majority of improvements are open for use, though temporary closures are expected as needed to complete work.
— Mitchell White