Campus police on Thursday released these sketches of the rape suspects, described as Asian males in their early 20s

UCSB Police Department

Campus police on Thursday released these sketches of the rape suspects, described as Asian males in their early 20s

UCSB Gang Rape Investigation Continues

Officials Point to Effectiveness of Central Coast’s State Crime Lab

Thursday, March 6, 2014
Article Tools
Print friendly
E-mail story
Tip Us Off
iPod friendly
Share Article

The ripple effects of the violent gang rape of a 19-year-old female student on UCSB’s campus have been felt for over a week. Following the brutal February 23 attack, UCSB police strengthened security, national media spread the story, and university CARE (Campus Advocacy Resources & Education) offices saw an increase in both walk-ins and calls.

UCSB police say they are looking for “upwards of at least three suspects” and have released sketches of two of them, both Asian males in their early twenties and strangers to the victim. One was described as tall and thin, the other short with a medium build. According to Sheriff’s officials, the woman was last seen walking alone between midnight and 12:30 a.m. near Embarcadero del Mar and Segovia Road. She attempted to fight off her attackers at the scene ​— ​authorities are not disclosing the exact campus location ​— ​and returned to her Isla Vista residence before notifying police.

In response to the high-profile case, the UCSB Police Department announced it will be recruiting five new officers to augment its 29-person force. And the university, according to Chancellor Henry Yang, will also add lights and cameras to the west end of campus and increase its number of student Community Service Officers (CSOs).

Last weekend, a Santa Barbara City College student was sexually assaulted on the 6500 block of Del Playa Drive at 1 a.m. on February 22. The suspect ​— ​described as a thin, 56 male with brown eyes and dark hair ​— ​allegedly took the victim behind a vehicle and assaulted her after he met her outside of a party. No one has been arrested, and the investigation is ongoing.

On January 18, an 18-year-old UCSB student was allegedly raped by three black males around 1:20 a.m. at the 6500 block of Sabado Tarde. The suspects ​— ​an unidentified 15-year-old, 22-year-old Casey Avila, and 18-year-old Charles Dunbar ​— ​were arrested and charged with forcible rape and aiding and abetting each other in the act. Avila and Dunbar are behind bars on $250,000 bail and are scheduled to appear in court on March 20. If convicted, they face up to nine years in prison.

UCSB officials said there were four reported rapes on campus in 2010, one in 2011, and four in 2012. In Isla Vista, there were 15 rapes and seven sexual battery reports in 2012, and 17 rapes and six sexual battery reports in 2013, according to records from the Sheriff’s Office. Data indicates only 15 percent of sexual assaults in the area occur between two people who do not know each other, according to Elsa Granados from the Santa Barbara Rape Crisis Center. Seventeen to 20 percent of the nearly 700 victims the center sees each year are UCSB or SBCC students. Of the 59 sexual assault cases reported to law enforcement last year, 41 percent involved alcohol.

While these cases and others are investigated and prosecuted, the Central Coast carries the distinction of leading the way in quick turnaround for evidence evaluation. About a year ago, a program called Rapid DNA Service (RADS) was implemented, which allows three additional swabs to be collected from high-yield areas on a victim and sent via FedEx to the crime lab. RADS boasts machines that can run up to 24 samples at once, a much faster process than opening a highly detailed rape kit. Located in Goleta, the state crime lab covers Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties and became the second one in California to implement RADS. District Attorney Joyce Dudley called the program “a watershed moment” in her 20 years in law enforcement.

Recently, 1,900 untested rape kits were found in Alameda County, prompting its District Attorney to work with state legislators to propose a bill that would call for rape kits to be submitted to crime labs within five days. It will be heard in the Legislative Assembly Public Safety committee next week. Though a backlog of unidentified suspects is not an issue in Santa Barbara, the fact that there are untested rape kits in other jurisdictions means DNA samples are not being uploaded into the Combined DNA Index System (known as CODIS), the national database used to match profiles with evidence already collected and uploaded. So far in 2014, Santa Barbara nurses have given 26 exams ​— ​eight were university students ​— ​and there have been five CODIS hits from samples collected last year.

While added enforcement helps, State Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson said UCSB’s police increase is merely a Band-Aid, arguing that the university needs at least another 30 officers and that it should take better responsibility for violent sexual behavior that occurs in Isla Vista. UCSB sophomore and Take Back the Night cochair Tara Atrian concurred, explaining campus resources should be better publicized. Further, she noted Isla Vista’s party reputation is problematic because it often wrongly excuses violent sexual behavior.


Independent Discussion Guidelines

Those statistics are startling.

sbresident2 (anonymous profile)
March 6, 2014 at 6:25 p.m. (Suggest removal)

So Sealion, what makes you an expert on rape?

Herschel_Greenspan (anonymous profile)
March 9, 2014 at 9:43 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Let's withhold sex from women until they agree to stay home and be domestic servants all day.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
March 10, 2014 at 12:10 a.m. (Suggest removal)

"Given that UCSB girls generally tend to display their superior sexual 'assets' like baboons in heat to all comers but generally allow access to said assets to only a small minority of alpha males, is it any wonder that sexually frustrated betas (like possibly the alleged Asian gang bang-ers profiled above) might stoop to sexual robbery of said assets and/or to revenge for said constant, unrelenting, public, and officially encouraged sexual provocations?"

Sealion: What about the good-looking Alpha jocks who rape women and get a free pass because they are A: The captain of the football team; B: Their parents have a lot of money; and/or C: Nobody could believe a good-looking guy could possibly commit rape because after all, (sarcasm here) rape is all about sex. If rape were all about the unfulfilled sex drives, most junior high school boys would be doing hard time in the klink.

What of course won't get touched here is the underlying issue of the culture of alcohol. A friend of mine (now deceased) worked at the Sheriff's Department and he provided me with a statistics sheet showing the correlation between booze and crime, and I distinctly remember that it said 50% of rapes happen with alcohol playing a role. (Whether the victim, the assailant, or both being under the influence I don't remember) Whether it's Hannah-Beth Jackson, women's groups, sexually frustrated men, UCSB students, or anyone else opining on this matter, they would never address the fact that I.V. is a madhouse with many drunken spoiled brats who have been raised without respect for their fellow beings. Doing so would expose the fallacy of their core beliefs and vested financial interests.

You can take it from there.

billclausen (anonymous profile)
March 10, 2014 at 4:49 a.m. (Suggest removal)

not in such a good place, are you, Sealion, writing "is it any wonder that sexually frustrated betas (like possibly the alleged Asian gang bang-ers profiled above) might stoop to sexual robbery" ?! The issues are yet deeper and more complex; quit blaming women!

DrDan (anonymous profile)
March 10, 2014 at 6:37 a.m. (Suggest removal)

No means no.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
March 10, 2014 at 11:37 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Sealion must be an oppressed male. Errr fight the power brother!

Herschel_Greenspan (anonymous profile)
March 10, 2014 at 12:01 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Aww, somebody needs a hug.

Herschel_Greenspan (anonymous profile)
March 10, 2014 at 12:42 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I think Sealion is saying that women commonly use the biological advantage of their sexuality in order dominate/manipulate/control/steal from men and that is morally wrong, even if it is not criminally wrong. I don't think he is saying anything about rape being "ok". I think his point is that one side is being recognized by the feminist narrative and the other side is not, when in fact the side they are virtually ignoring is definitely a "women's issue" and is significantly more predominant than rape. But since it happens to benefit women in many ways, perhaps this is why it is ignored?

Not to mention, it is maybe a bit ironic that the very same mechanism by which women use to control/manipulate/dominate/steal from men is the same mechanism that causes some (VERY few) men to rape - afterall, the element used to control/manipulate/dominate/steal is not by providing sex but by withholding it. So perhaps his point is that if women were not using their sexuality for the purposes of control and manipulation so much they may, just may be more open with it, although neither I nor he could say that with any certainty as we are not female and so have very little if any understanding of the female sex drive.. and women commonly either contradict and/or lie about it so the world may never know the truth.

I think he's also saying that by putting such a huge emphasis on rape and what they have identified as "rape culture" creates a culture that is anti-male rather than being anti-rapist. They seem to forget that women are just as big of a participant in what they refer to as "rape culture" as men are and most of the women involved don't seem to have a problem with it and actively encourage it, at least in my experience.

Both sealion and feminists do have something in common, both seem want to change the way men and women commonly relate to each other that can cause negative interactions between them.

loonpt (anonymous profile)
March 10, 2014 at 1:10 p.m. (Suggest removal)

event calendar sponsored by: