Sexual predators who use social media and other online portals to target their victims have increased dramatically in recent years. That has prompted the Ventura County Sheriff’s Department to work with a university in hopes of better targeting these criminals.

The Department has partnered with Purdue University professor Dr. Kathryn Seigfried-Spellar, who specializes in behavioral sciences and cyber crime.

"We're working with her to try and identify patterns of online predators in an attempt to see which predators might actually lure victims to come and meet with them," Ventura County Sheriff's Sergeant Eric Tennessen said.

Authorities aren’t saying much about a body discovered in the mountains north of Santa Barbara.

The body of a woman was found near East Camino Cielo Road and Arroyo Burro Road by someone passing by just before 10 a.m. Saturday. The name of the woman and the cause of death haven’t been released yet.

Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s detectives haven’t called it a homicide, and aren’t releasing any other details about what they say is an active investigation.

A local law enforcement agency assisted federal agents in intercepting more than a million dollars worth of illegal drugs.

The Simi Valley Police Department says its officers worked with the Drug Enforcement Administration Friday when they arrested 61-year-old Luis Chavez and 47-year-old Sergio Vega for federal drug violations after seizing 46 pounds of cocaine and two pounds of heroin. The street value is over $1.2 million. The amount of drugs seized would have provided more than 200,000 doses of illegal drugs to drug addicts.

A judge found a 15 year old Santa Barbara County girl guilty of second degree murder in the death of her newborn son.

The Santa Maria girl was tried in juvenile court for the death of her son in January. Because of her age, the girl’s name was not released, but she was called Maribel S. Prosecutors say after giving birth, the teen used a knife to slash the baby’s throat.

Just released statistics show a drop in the unemployment numbers for the Central and South Coasts.

In Ventura County, the jobless rate dipped from 5.7% in August to 5.5% in September. Santa Barbara County’s unemployment dropped month to month from 4.8% to 4.6%. And, San Luis Obispo County had the lowest unemployment rate in the Tri-Counties, going from 4.5% in August to 4.2% in September.

The state added 30,000 jobs in September, the eighth straight month of job growth. California’s month to month unemployment rate held steady at 5.5%

Scorched brush on the side of highway 101 marks the spot of a fiery fatal accident that happened on Thursday.

The California Highway Patrol is investigating the cause of the accident, which occurred around 8 p.m.; the traffic impact lasted more than two hours, with the freeway down to one lane.

The heat wave isn’t over, but high temperatures will be cooler Friday on the Central and South Coasts than Thursday.

The high pressure ridge which gave us the unseasonably hot weather is breaking down, and will be replaced by a low pressure trough which will mean a cooling trend over the weekend.

The brush fire danger remains high because of the heat, but the cooling and a drop in wind are easing the threat to the point that Red Flag warnings for the region have been canceled.

A spill involving a chemical used for cancer chemotherapy forced the evacuation of a medical building in Ventura County, and sent three people to a hospital emergency room.

The accident happened just after four p.m. Thursday at an outpatient facility for the Ventura County Medical Center. It’s on the 3200 block of Loma Vista Road in Ventura. Initially, the building’s fifth floor was evacuated, but because of the smell the whole building was eventually cleared.

A Santa Barbara County preschool which had been facing closure due to finances is apparently getting a second chance, thanks to the community.

The Zaca Preschool Program in Buellton was facing closure after funding changes made it impossible for the Santa Barbara County Education Office to continue to support it.

A South Coast community is reporting a rash of thefts from storage lockers.

Ventura has had 45 reported burglaries from self-storage facilities since the first of the year, with 30 from two businesses alone.

Investigators say most of the burglaries appear to be the result of people using bolt cutters on padlocks.

They recommend that you choose storage facilities with an access control system, a video surveillance system, and use a high quality lock.