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Security guard arrested in theft of Robin Ventura baseball

June 14, 2012 |  4:17 pm

A security guard in Orcutt was arrested on suspicion of stealing Robin Ventura memorabilia When the alarm sounded, sheriff's deputies rushed to a junior high school in Orcutt, near Santa Maria.

A display case that held baseball memorabilia from Chicago White Sox Manager Robin Ventura had been rifled. A security guard was on hand to help the deputies -- and that he did.

He was arrested early Thursday morning when deputies noticed something round in his front pocket: a baseball, it turned out, that had been autographed by Robin Ventura.

A spokesman for the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Department said the guard, who was hired to patrol Lakeview Junior High School overnight before its graduation ceremony, also had a piece of the case's broken lock in his pocket.

Cameron James Taylor, 21, was arrested on suspicion of felony burglary and petty theft.

Ventura, who played for four major league teams including the Dodgers, was born in Santa Maria and attended the junior high school before going on to Ernest Righetti High School. He donated $200,000 for the building of a gym floor at Lakeview in the late 1990s, according to Bob Bush, superintendant of Orcutt Unified School District.

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-- Steve Chawkins

Photo: White Sox Manager Robin Ventura attended schools in Orcutt, where a security guard is accused of stealing a baseball Ventura signed. Credit: Marcio Jose Sanchez / Associated Press

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