A Glendale man charged with stealing a statue of Marilyn Monroe from its perch atop the Ladies of Hollywood Gazebo on the Hollywood Walk of Fame pleaded not guilty Tuesday to grand theft and vandalism.
Austin Mikel Clay, 25, the same man who used a pickax to vandalize President Donald Trump’s Walk of Fame star, is charged with one felony count each of grand theft of property valued at more than $950 and vandalism causing over $400 in damage.
Clay, who was on felony probation for damaging Trump’s star last summer, was arrested last Friday afternoon. LAPD Detective Douglas Oldfield said police conducted a search of his home and found evidence that allegedly linked him to the theft of the statue, which is owned by the city of Los Angeles.
The evidence found did not include the statue, which was sawed off the top of the gazebo at Hollywood Boulevard and La Brea Avenue about 11:30 p.m. June 16.
“Looking back at the (security) video, it would be reasonable that the statue broke and could be in multiple pieces,” Oldfield said.
The Hollywood Gazebo celebrates women in film from different cultures who brought change to the film industry. The artwork features depictions of Dolores Del Rio, Dorothy Dandridge, Mae West and Anna May Wong.
Clay — whose bail was set at $45,000 — could face up to three years in jail if convicted of snatching the statue.
Clay was previously charged with felony vandalism in connection with the destruction of Trump’s star on the evening of July 25, 2018. He subsequently pleaded no contest and was sentenced last November to one day in jail, 20 days of community labor and three years of probation, and was ordered to pay more than $9,400 in restitution to the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce.
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