San Bernardino County sheriff's deputies hanged in effigy, authorities say

San Bernardino County sheriff’s deputies are looking for as many as four people who are suspected of hanging county law enforcement personnel in effigy, authorities said.

On Feb. 18, sheriff's deputies in Twin Peaks, near Lake Arrowhead, received a call of a mannequin hanging by a rope near the road with the name of a deputy sheriff and a bulls-eye painted on it. Twin Peaks deputies responded and collected it when another mannequin was found near a school bus stop.

Shortly after that, the station received a call that about five other mannequins with deputies' names on them were hanging at multiple locations. Authorities found seven mannequins in the Crestline and Cedarpines Park communities, six of which had the names of current and past Twin Peaks deputies. A probation officer’s name was scrawled on the other. 

Within a few hours, deputies identified Sarah Stewart, 36, as the person responsible, authorities said. Stewart is a known criminal in the community with ties to white supremacist gang members, according to Gil Flores, a spokesman for the Twin Peaks sheriff's office. 

Witnesses reported seeing Stewart loading mannequins into a U-Haul van with another suspect, Erin Elder, on the night of the incident, authorities said. 

Deputies arrested Stewart and Elder at a residence in the 300 block of Davos Drive in Crestline on Saturday. 

Stewart was arrested on suspicion of threatening an officer in order to prevent duties, criminal threats against an officer and criminal activity to promote the reputation of a street gang, authorities said. She is also being held on suspicion of cruelty to a child.

Elder, 47, was arrested on suspicion of cruelty to a child. Deputies said they found methamphetamines in the home where the pair were arrested.

Authorities ask that anyone with information on the other suspects call the Twin Peaks station at (909) 336-0687 or call (800) 78-CRIME.

For more local and breaking news, follow me on Twitter: @sarahparvini


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