AIRPORT COURTHOUSE — The man who allegedly threw nails into the driveways of two flight schools and an aviation business at Santa Monica Airport has been charged with a misdemeanor count of attempted vandalism.
Jeremiah Kean Mayman, 31, of Venice, was arrested on May 31 on suspicion of felony vandalism when a Santa Monica Police Department employee witnessed him allegedly throwing 1.5-inch roofing nails into driveways as he rode by flight schools on an 18-speed bicycle.
His bail was set at $20,000, and he posted soon after.
That count has been knocked down to a misdemeanor, and the Santa Monica City Attorney’s Office is prosecuting the case.
Kean Mayman was scheduled for arraignment Friday, but it was continued until Aug. 23.
SMO and the aviation businesses that call it home are a source of division within the Santa Monica community, particularly now as City Hall embarks on a three-part process to make the airport more compatible with the neighborhood surrounding it.
Flight schools factor into the discussion, with many residents calling for their ouster in 2015 when the leases come up for renewal.
Student pilots perform repetitive flights around airport over densely-populated neighborhoods. Residents of Santa Monica, Mar Vista and West Los Angeles dislike the noise and feel that their health is negatively impacted by the exhaust.
Between late-March and mid-May, Justice Aviation, American Flyers and Krueger Aviation reported six occasions in which similar-sized roofing nails appeared in their driveways.
Justice Aviation and American Flyers are the two largest flight schools at Santa Monica Airport. Krueger Aviation buys and sells airplanes, but has a sign on the front of the business that suggests that it doubles as a flight school.
Despite the fact that an estimated 600 to 700 nails were dropped in the first six occurrences, only one Krueger Aviation customer discovered a popped tire.
According to the Santa Monica Police Department, the first report of the nails came on April 18. By that time, employees and others had found nails on the premises two other times, but hadn’t thought to report it.
More nails showed up on May 8, May 10 and May 18. The nails stopped appearing until May 31, when Kean Mayman was arrested.