A Santa Barbara police officer made a routine traffic stop on July 19 and discovered 18 guns — some were loaded; all were stolen — in the trunk of a car driven by a 33-year-old wanted felon.
Eric Ross of Caruthers, a small town in Fresno County, was driving a white Hyundai Elantra on the 600 block of Anacapa Street at around 12:45 a.m. when he was pulled over because his rear license plate light wasn't working. In the car with Ross was Kristin Boisa-Taylor, a 46-year-old transient from Sacramento.
When the officer asked for Ross's driver's license, explained SBPD spokesperson Sgt. Riley Harwood in a prepared statement, Ross told him it was suspended. A records check confirmed as much but also showed Ross had a $150,000 felony arrest warrant out of Kings County for rape, intimidating a witness, and terrorist threats. He was then arrested. A records check of Boisa-Taylor revealed she had a $2,500 misdemeanor arrest warrant for illegal lodging. She was also arrested, said Harwood.
When officers searched Ross's car, they found shotgun shells in the center console, 18 guns (handguns, rifles, and shotguns) in the trunk, and 47 boxes of different types of ammo. Ross told the officers the guns had belonged to his father, who recently died, and that he was on his way to Orange County to sell them. Further investigation revealed, however, that the firearms had been stolen from a home in Caruthers.
Ross was booked into Santa Barbara County Jail on a variety of charges, including possession of a loaded firearm in a vehicle, being a felon in possession of a firearm, and being a felon in possession of ammunition.