Belmont vice mayor charged in dispute

August 12, 2008 8:21:12 AM PDT
Belmont's vice mayor faces up to a year in jail if convicted of domestic violence charges being filed against him this morning by the San Mateo County District Attorney's office. Bill Dickenson was arrested the afternoon of July 11 after a woman called police to say the vice mayor had grabbed her purse and swung her to the ground at a Redwood City restaurant, police said.

The alleged battery occurred around 4:30 p.m. at Redwood City Underground, a pub at 2650 Broadway. Dickenson was taken into custody that afternoon but released on $10,000 bail that night.

San Mateo County Chief Deputy District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe said this morning that the district attorney's office has investigated and has decided to charge Dickenson.

He faces two misdemeanor counts of domestic violence and one count of misdemeanor false imprisonment, and will be arraigned Wednesday morning.

If convicted, Dickenson faces up to a year in county jail.

"We had heard the victim's description of what had occurred and we had his description of what had occurred," Wagstaffe said.

"We did some follow-up investigation ... our ultimate conclusion was that we think that there are additional facts that corroborate her description of what occurred and not his," he said.

Police say the woman claimed Dickenson was trying to keep her at the restaurant. When officers arrived, she had an abrasion to her left arm and armpit area and an abrasion to her right shoulder, Redwood City police Capt. Chris Cesena said.

Dickenson has disputed the woman's story, saying she hit him in the head with her purse after the two had been fighting over a business agreement.

Dickenson said he and the alleged victim, whom he had dated, were joint owners of Redwood City Underground. They began putting money into the new venue several months ago, Dickenson said.

A disagreement over the partnership sparked the events that occurred July 11, he said.

Dickenson's initial appearance in San Mateo County Superior Court is scheduled for 9 a.m. Wednesday.


Load Comments