Friday, February 23 , 2018, 1:23 pm | Fair 58º

 
 
 
 

Local News

Santa Barbara Landlord Dario Pini Arrested on Burglary Charges

Controversial property owner accused of stealing construction materials from a downtown site slated to be demolished

Notorious Santa Barbara landlord Dario Pini was arrested on burglary charges early Friday after allegedly stealing construction materials from a downtown property slated to be demolished.

Dario Pini
Dario Pini

A warrant had been issued for Pini’s arrest, and he was taken into custody in connection with a burglary that occurred earlier this week when neighbors reported he was seen taking copper tubing, pipe fittings and coaxial cable from a nearby property, according to Santa Barbara police Sgt. Riley Harwood, a department spokesman.

Renovation work had begun at the 316 W. Carrillo St. site, which was surrounded by chain-link fencing. Harwood said several neighbors had contacted the property owner Sunday, reporting that Pini had been seen twice on the property.

“One of the witnesses confronted Pini as he was walking off of the property with items taken from the residence,” Harwood said.

Pini declared to the witness that he had permission to be there, but dropped the items as he left the scene when the witness threatened to call the police, Harwood said.

Copper tubing, water heater pipe fittings and coaxial cable are some of the items that Pini allegedly took from the residence, and an investigation confirmed that Pini did not have permission to be on the property, Harwood said.

“Although witnesses claimed to know Pini by sight, his identity as the suspect was confirmed with a photo lineup,” Harwood said.

On Thursday, a warrant was obtained for Pini’s arrest, and he was picked up after officers spotted him on Chapala Street while responding to an unrelated call at 3:10 a.m. Friday.

He was taken to Santa Barbara County Jail, where he was booked on the burglary warrant. Bail was set at $20,000.

Pini remained in custody Friday afternoon, according to Sheriff’s Department spokeswoman Kelly Hoover, and could not be reached for comment.

Pini owns hundred of properties in Santa Barbara and elsewhere in the county, and has had a decades-long antagonistic relationship with city building enforcement officials.

Most recently, Santa Barbara City Council members sided with neighbors of one of his properties and refused to give him permission to build a rental complex until he resolves violations listed in a city lawsuit.

Noozhawk staff writer Lara Cooper can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click here to get started >

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made through PayPal below, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments.

Thank you for your vital support.



Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.

Daily Noozhawk

Subscribe to Noozhawk's A.M. Report, our free e-Bulletin sent out every day at 4:15 a.m. with Noozhawk's top stories, hand-picked by the editors.

Sign Up Now >