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Domestic Disturbance Arrest

By Claire Scholl, NewsChannel 3 Assignment Editor,
Published On: Oct 14 2013 04:20:44 PM CDT
Updated On: Oct 14 2013 10:43:14 PM CDT

Dru Ethan Stemm, age 30, of Santa Barbara was arrested for assault with a deadly weapon (semiautomatic firearm) and other charges stemming from a domestic disturbance during which he discharged a handgun.


A Santa Barbara man is behind bars Monday for assault with a deadly weapon. Santa Barbara Police Department released the following information: 

Dru Ethan Stemm, age 30, of Santa Barbara was arrested for assault with a deadly weapon (semiautomatic firearm) and other charges stemming from a domestic disturbance during which he discharged a handgun. 

The victim, a 29-year-old male from Claremont, suffered minor injuries from being punched on the head and face during the altercation.  Stemm sustained a minor injury to his forehead.  Stemm and the victim were in a non-cohabitating dating relationship.

On October 12, 2013 at 1:13 a.m., officers from the Santa Barbara Police Department responded to multiple calls to 9-1-1 of gunshots heard in the vicinity of 100 W. Haley Street.  Upon arrival they located Stemm and the victim engaged in an argument in the common parking lot for the residences at 119, 123, and 129 W. Haley Street. 

At the time the officers encountered the involved parties the victim was holding a handgun, a loaded Ruger LC9 9mm pistol.  Initially, both Stemm and the victim were detained at gunpoint and handcuffed.

Investigation revealed the following.  Stemm and the victim were in a dating relationship and earlier in the day the victim had come to Santa Barbara to visit Stemm.  The two ate dinner downtown and then visited two bars, during which time Stemm consumed several alcoholic beverages. 

While they were at a downtown nightclub an argument ensued between them and they left; Stemm drove to his nearby residence on the 100 block of W. Haley Street and the victim walked there.  When the victim arrived he was confronted by Stemm in the parking lot.  Stemm was holding the aforementioned 9mm handgun which belongs to him.  Stemm and the victim argued and Stemm held the gun to the victim’s head and threatened him. 

A fight for the gun followed during which Stemm punched the victim on the head and fired his gun twice.  After Stemm discharged his pistol he dropped it and it was recovered by the victim, who held it until police arrived.  Investigation indicates that Stemm was not trying to shoot the victim when he fired his gun, but likely did so in close proximity to the victim out of anger or to frighten or intimidate the victim. 

Stemm was arrested and booked into Santa Barbara County Jail for the following crimes with a bail amount of $75,000.00:

  • Assault with a deadly weapon (semiautomatic firearm), felony
  • Terrorist threat, felony
  • Possess a loaded firearm with the intent to commit a felony, felony
  • Domestic battery, misdemeanor
  • Possess a loaded firearm a in public place, misdemeanor
  • Possess a deadly weapon with the intent to commit assault, misdemeanor

The victim was put in contact with an advocate from the Santa Barbara County Domestic Violence Emergency Response Team and an Emergency Protective Order was obtained for the victim.  Officers canvassed the area of the incident for additional victims; none were found.


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