SAN DIEGO, CA (STL.News) California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) officials are looking for Steven Vargas, 53, who walked away from the Male Community Reentry Program (MCRP) facility in San Diego on Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020.
Vargas was given permission to leave the facility on Tuesday morning, but did not return when he was required, and has not been seen since he left the MCRP at 10:05 a.m.
CDCR was also notified at 11:45 a.m. that Vargas’ electronic monitoring device had been tampered with and notification was immediately made to local law enforcement agencies. Within minutes, agents from CDCR’s Office of Correctional Safety were dispatched to locate and apprehend Vargas.
Vargas is a Hispanic male, six feet tall and weighs 192 pounds. He was last seen wearing faded black jeans, black shoes, a blue shirt and a charcoal grey sweater. He has a long gray/white goatee. Vargas was received from San Diego County May 6, 2019 with a four-year sentence for vehicle theft with prior vehicle related theft convictions and grand theft firearm. Vargas was transferred from the California Institution for Men to the MCRP Jan. 6, 2020. He was scheduled to be released to parole supervision in June 2020.
Anyone who sees Vargas or has any knowledge of his whereabouts should immediately call 911 or Agent Hans Groth at (619) 220-5439.
The MCRP allows eligible offenders committed to state prison to serve the end of their sentences in the re-entry center and provides them the programs and tools necessary to transition from custody to the community. It is a voluntary program for male offenders who have approximately 1 year left to serve. The program links offenders to a range of community-based rehabilitative services that assist with substance use disorders, mental health care, medical care, employment, education, housing, family reunification and social support.
Since 1977, 99 percent of all offenders who have left an adult institution, camp, or community-based program without permission have been apprehended.