SANTA MARGARITA — A Santa Margarita man wanted for kidnapping and a slew of other charges was arrested after a short foot chase, the San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Office reported.

On Wednesday, Nov. 6, members of the Sheriff’s Special Enforcement Detail (SED) served a high-risk search warrant at a home in the 4100 block of Stagecoach Canyon Road in rural Santa Margarita. 

They were trying to locate 28-year-old Max Aaron Gerarden, a suspect who was wanted for a variety of charges including aggravated mayhem, kidnapping, false imprisonment, battery with serious bodily injury, inflicting corporal injury to spouse or cohabitant, and threatening to commit a crime of violence. All of those charges stem from one investigation that Sheriff’s Office detectives had conducted.

Gerarden had been on the Sheriff’s Most Wanted social media post three times with the most recent occurring on Oct. 16. 


When the Sheriff’s SED team attempted to serve the search warrant, Gerarden fled the location in a vehicle. Deputies gave pursuit, along with assistance from a CHP airplane. The pursuit lasted approximately 5 minutes before ending at a location on Goldie Lane in Santa Margarita where Gerarden exited the vehicle and began running onto the property. After a search of the property, SED members located Gerarden and took him into custody.

At that same location, another wanted suspect, Daniel Jay Romo was also taken into custody for violating his post-release community supervision on an original charge of assault with a deadly weapon.