By Ricky Courtney – Cougar News Staff Writer
Santa Clarita city council candidate Johnny Pride was arrested Thursday, March 4th just hours after he appeared at a candidate’s forum. He was accused of raping two 14-year old girls after buying them alcohol on Feb 27th.
Pride, who lives in Valencia, is 26 years old and is a model and a former reality TV contestant. He is one of 11 candidates running in the April 13th election.
Pride was booked on suspicion of rape, lewd conduct with a minor, sodomy, oral copulation of a minor and contributing to the delinquency of a minor. He was being held under $500,000 bail until he was released early Saturday morning after charges were not filed against him.
The Los Angeles District Attorney’s office refused to comment on the case but the Sheriffs department said that that the reason the DA’s office declined to file charges against Pride was insufficient evidence in the case against him.
Sheriff’s spokesman Steve Whitmore said that the victims came to the sheriffs to report the alleged incident and that they received a search warrant to investigate.
“The interviews (with the girls) were quite extensive, their stories matched and when we served the search warrant, what they told us was all verified in the apartment itself,” he said. “Everything they told us was exactly the way it was, even down to some minor details. It was pretty complete, pretty exacting.”
Pride may be out of jail but Sheriff’s Special Victims Bureau Sgt. Dan Scott said that “the investigation is ongoing, including further investigation into the processing of DNA evidence.”