State Street Suspect Arrested for Hate Crime & Battery on Officer
On October 12, 2021, at 3:30 pm, Santa Barbara Police Officers responded to a disturbance call in the 900 block of State Street. Witnesses in the area stated a male suspect had approached a family of 4 visiting Santa Barbara and started verbally assaulting them. The family, which consisted of two juveniles, attempted to flee the area in hopes of walking away from the belligerent suspect, however the suspect continued to pursue them northbound on State Street. Eventually the family was able to flee from the suspect near the intersection of State Street and Canon Perdido Street.
The investigation revealed the suspect, identified as Mark Anthony Smith, a 57-year-old transient, had unprovokedly been yelling slurs at the family based on their clothing and perceived nationality. Smith then had focused his assault on one of the adolescents. Witnesses and the family felt if they did not actively flee the area, Smith would physically harm them.
Based on witness descriptions, Smith was located near the intersection of State Street and Canon Perdido Street where he was placed under arrest. During the arrest, Smith battered an Officer. The Officer was not injured.
Smith was booked for Felony Hate Crime Threats, and Misdemeanor Battery on an Officer. Smith was booked in Santa Barbara County Jail with $10,000 bail.