Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Andrew Luster

A Night Out

Map of California with Santa Barbara locator
Map of California with Santa Barbara

Carey was cutting loose.

The lean 21-year-old coed got together with friends on July 13, 2000, for a night of partying in Santa Barbara, Calif.

They met at Carey's apartment for beers, then went out for pizza and more drinks. The group eventually made its way to State Street, a popular spot for clubbing among Santa Barbara's many college students.

First stop was Madison's Sports Grill, where Carey downed several cocktails — a Cosmopolitan and two Long Island iced teas. Carey, a waitress and a student, had a fight with her boyfriend at Madison's, and she and a friend named David moved on to O'Malley's Bar.

Stumbling drunk, Carey and David ended up on the dance floor at O'Malley's.

A shark standing near the bar smelled blood in the water.

Madison's Sports Grill
Madison's Sports Grill

The man ogling the young dancers was 15 years older than most of the clubbers. But at 6-foot-1 and nearly 200 pounds, he was fit and reasonably good-looking, with a square jaw and piercing blue-green eyes.

He approached the dancing couple and offered to get a sobering glass of water for David, who was having trouble standing up.

Both David and Carey drank from the stranger's water.

Soon the night became more of a blur.

As Carey later put it, "After I drank the water, I don't remember doing anything."

That apparently is precisely what the mystery man with the water had in mind.

His name was Andrew Luster.

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