SB homeowner says incident was a ‘misunderstanding’
The District Attorney’s Office has dismissed a charge of felony first-degree residential burglary against comedian Andy Dick after the owner of the Santa Barbara home where he was arrested told prosecutors the Oct. 13 incident was a “misunderstanding.”
Mr. Dick, 57, had been scheduled to return to Superior Court on March 7 to set a date for a preliminary hearing on the charge filed by prosecutors in the wake of his arrest at a vacant home in the hills of Santa Barbara.
The hearing never happened, however. Instead, prosecutors dropped the residential burglary charge they had filed against the comedian/actor.
“Based upon information received from homeowner Dario Pini after the case was filed, the matter was dismissed,” Deputy District Attorney Sherwin Nadjm told the News-Press.
Asked to elaborate, the prosecutor repeated that “the case was dismissed yesterday (3/7/23), based on a declaration received from homeowner Mr. Dario Pini, indicating that Mr. Dick’s presence on his property was a misunderstanding, that he had no objection to his presence on the property, and that he did not want to seek prosecution. The incident was reported to 9-1-1 by a property manager for Mr. Pini, and not by Mr. Pini.”
Mr. Dick, a longtime comedian and actor in movies and TV shows, was arrested on Oct. 13 by Santa Barbara police after dispatch received a report of a burglary in progress at a home under construction in the 100 block of Conejo Road.
Police responded at about 5:45 p.m.
“The (property manager) informed officers when they arrived on scene he did not know Dick nor did he have permission to be on the property or in the home,” Sgt. Ethan Ragsdale, the Santa Barbara Police public information officer, told the News-Press at the time.
“Probable cause was established to arrest Dick after it is believed he removed several items (power tools) from the home,” Sgt. Ragsdale said. “He was booked in the Santa Barbara County Jail for 459PC–Felony (Residential) Burglary with $50,000 bail.”
He said Mr. Dick did not appear to be under the influence of alcohol or drugs, and he did not resist his arrest. “From what the arresting officer told me, he was cooperative,” Sgt. Ragsdale said.
The felony complaint was filed the next day, Oct. 14, alleging that Mr. Dick “did willfully and unlawfully” enter the house “with the intent to commit larceny …”
Prosecutors also filed a special allegation that the offense was considered a serious felony.
Mr. Dick pleaded not guilty at his Oct. 17 arraignment.
Deputy Public Defender Brian Mathis later released a statement that his office was “confident additional facts will come to light supporting Mr. Dick as this case moves forward.”