Suspect in Custody After Two Month Investigation by Detectives
by Jae Brattain | posted 01.20.2014
James Robert Begg was arrested by the Santa Barbara Police Department after detectives obtained a search warrant for suspected drug sales. He was under surveillance for a two month period beginning in November 2013. According to detectives from the Narcotics and Vice Division, he has been accused of selling heroin, one of the most addictive drugs on the street.
However, Begg countered that he was not actually selling heroin. His contention was that he gave it freely to those suffering. Heroin is known to be highly addictive and approximately 23-percent of people actually become physically dependent on it, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse. Roughly 4.2 million have admitted using the drug at least once. This equates to approximately 1.6-percent of the population in the United States.
Detectives observed Begg at his home near the corner of Gillespie Street and West Pedergosa Street on Santa Barbara’s westside. During the two month period, they witnessed the suspect selling narcotics during their investigation. A search warrant was granted to detectives on January 10, 2014. On Wednesday, January 15th, the warrant was executed to arrest the subject and search his residence.
Begg was taken into custody after he rode away on a bicycle in the morning. Police officers stopped him a few blocks away and placed him into handcuffs. They then went back to his home and conducted a thorough search of the premises. Detectives discovered approximately $400 worth of heroin, nearly $500 in cash, as well as a variety of paraphernalia to use narcotics. The list included syringes to inject heroin, a weigh scale, and packaging normally associated with drug distribution.
The 50-year old suspect was taken to Santa Barbara County Jail. His bail bond has been set at $30,000 for felony narcotics sales, as well as felony possession for sales and misdemeanor drug paraphernalia possession.