Car stunt leads to woman’s death

SANTA BARBARA — City police officers responded to a local hillside residential area late Saturday afternoon to discover a 41-year-old female lying dead on her back in the middle of the street, the victim of serious head trauma after a deadly car stunt.

According to police department spokesman Lt. Paul McCaffrey, first responders to the scene quickly determined that “she had been riding on the hood of a moving vehicle” driven by Dennis Wayne Gibbons, 59.

Dennis Wayne Gibbons - Mugshot - Santa Barbara Sheriff's Office

Investigators soon learned that both Gibbons and the female victim had consumed “various amounts of alcohol and drugs, including crack cocaine,” as reported by McCaffrey to the media. Unnamed witnesses at the scene reported to police that Gibbons and the decedent had been parked on the side of the road for some time, and that when they departed, the female victim remained seated on the hood of Gibbons’ 1994 Mercury sedan.

Paramedics reported that the victim was injured in a fall from the car’s hood while the vehicle was driving down the roadway.

Subsequent investigation revealed small amounts of marijuana, cocaine and prescription drugs inside the car registered to and driven by Gibbons. He was arrested on the scene and booked on charges of felony driving under the influence, possession of a controlled substance, and gross vehicular manslaughter while under the influence of alcohol. He was transported to Santa Barbara County Jail with bail set at $100,000.


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