Knife Wielding Domestic Violence Suspect Subdued by Officer’s Taser

Authored on
October 27, 2021

On October 27, 2021, around 4:45pm, Santa Barbara Police Officers responded to a battery with great bodily injury that had occurred in the 200 block of East Gutierrez Street. The victim informed dispatchers she had been strangled and battered by the suspect who was currently in possession of a knife. The suspect had fled the area prior to police arrival. Officers learned the suspect also has 2 active felony no bail warrants from Ventura County, and is on felony post release community supervision through the California Department of Corrections.

While officers were in the area conducting their investigation, the suspect, Alexander Vargas, a 22-year-old Ventura resident, returned to the scene and observed the officers. Vargas fled on foot and officers gave chase. At one point during the foot pursuit, Vargas pulled a folding knife from his pocket, opened it, and brandished the knife over his head and then started running towards one of the officers. The officer utilized verbal commands and unholstered their duty weapon which deterred Vargas’ attack. Vargas failed to obey commands and continued to flee on foot. Additional officers arrived in the area of 300 East Cota Street and were able to corral Vargas. Again, Vargas stopped running and turned toward the officer with knife in hand. One of the officers utilized their Taser and successfully subdued Vargas without using lethal force. During the arrest, Vargas was continually trying to bite, kick, and break free from the officers. It also appeared Vargas was under the influence of a controlled substance at time of arrest.

Vargas was taken into custody and transported to Cottage Hospital per Santa Barbara Police taser use policy. He was then medically cleared and booked in Santa Barbara County Jail for felony Domestic Battery, Felony Assault Causing Great Bodily Injury, Felony Resisting an Officer with Violence, and misdemeanor Brandishing a Knife. He is being held without bail.

The victim was offered services from Domestic Violence Solutions and medical attention on scene.