SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS RADIO) – An Indiana Batmobile builder facing felony
charges in an alleged favor to a Bay Area sheriff's friend will not appear
in court at his previously scheduled Bat-time later this month, nor at
all, as prosecutors weigh dropping the case.
San Mateo County District Attorney Steven Wagstaffe told KGO on Friday
that he is considering dropping felony counts of obtaining money by false
pretenses and diversion of construction funds against Mark Racop following
the station’s investigation that prompted local and national outcry.
Racop was due to be arraigned on Aug. 19. But Wagstaffe said that he will
now interview Racop and Sam Anagnostou, the Atherton realtor whom Racop
said pursued legal action against him before asking the outgoing San Mateo
County Sheriff to investigate Racop in his home state, as Wagstaffe weighs
the case's merits.
"I said, ‘Hey, what about this, this and this? I want some more detail,
before we make a final decision on whether this case will go forward or
not,’ " Wagstaffe said of his conversation with staff in an interview with
The San Mateo County Sheriff’s Office raided Logansport, Indiana-based
Fiberglass Freaks last month, where Racop constructs replicas of the
Batmobile from the 1966 "Batman" TV series starring the late Adam West.
San Mateo County Sheriff's Office sources told KGO a week ago that Sheriff
Carlos Bolanos ordered the July 19 raid – which public records, obtained
by the station, showed cost the department more than $10,000 in airfare,
hotels and transportation – after Anagnostou asked him to intervene in a
dispute with Racop.
Bolanos lost his reelection bid in June, with Sheriff-elect Christina
Corpus earning just shy of 57% of the vote. He told staff that month that
he will retire at the end of his term in January, according to the Redwood
Racop, an ordained minister, told KGO and the Pharos-Tribune –
Logansport’s local paper – that he bumped back production of Anagnostou’s
Batmobile after he missed a payment, Anagnostou then paid off the
production costs in full, but he pursued legal action against Racop after
learning he could wait up to two years fo his Batmobile could be
Wagstaffe’s office declined to bring charges when Anagnostou filed a
complaint with Atherton police last September, and a San Mateo County
judge in March dismissed a lawsuit alleging Racop had committed fraud and
breach of contract.
Anagnostou then asked Bolanos, the San Mateo County Sheriff, to
investigate Racop, according to KGO’s sources. Bolanos and Anagostou were
Facebook friends, according to KGO and SFGATE, but Anagnostou’s Facebook
no longer lists them as friends.
The sheriff's office didn’t respond to KCBS Radio’s email and voicemails
requesting comment on Friday afternoon.
Following residents' complaints in Tuesday's meeting, the San Mateo County
Board of Supervisors directed the County Executive's Office to speak with
the district attorney and sheriff's offices about the case.
CA sheriff orders raid on Indiana Batmobile garage, allegedly as favor for
friend - EXCLUSIVE
San Mateo Co. residents demand answers after Indiana Batmobile garage raid
Batmobile raid hearing canceled, San Mateo DA considers dropping case --
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