Actor Randy Quaid and his wife, Evi, who have warrants out for their arrest here in Santa Barbara, were arrested in Vancouver, Canada, on Wednesday.
According to a press release from the Vancouver Police Department, officers made contact with a man and woman during an assistance call and “learned that the two were wanted on outstanding warrants from the United States.”
The Canada Border Services Agency arrested the couple and brought them to the Vancouver Jail. They were scheduled to appear before an immigration board Friday afternoon, with some Canadian television stations reporting the two could be seeking refugee status in Canada.
Friday morning, Judge Donna Geck, at the request of Deputy District Attorney Anthony Davis, increased the couple’s arrest warrants from $50,000 to $500,000 each, “based off the fact they fled the jurisdiction,” said Davis, who found out yesterday of the Quaids’ arrest.
They both face charges of felony vandalism as well as trespassing. In addition, Evi Quaid is facing a resisting arrest charge and probation violation. Last Monday they failed to show up for an arraignment on the charges. Against the request of attorney Bob Sanger (who said he hadn’t been retained by the Quaids in the new case, Davis said), Judge Geck issued a $50,000 warrant for arrests. The two allegedly were squatting in an East Mountain Drive home they at one time had owned, and apparently believe they still own.
Evi Quaid pleaded no contest to a misdemeanor charge of defrauding an innkeeper earlier this year. Authorities had originally charged them both with the crime, and they missed various court dates then as well. Charges against Randy Quaid — best known for his role of Cousin Eddie in National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation — were eventually dropped.
The couple’s arraignment was continued to this Tuesday at the same time they are scheduled to appear in civil court, where they face the possibility of restraining orders being levied against them. One of the owners of the home in which the Quaids were allegedly squatting, Lanette Turicchi, filed for a temporary restraining order against the two after they mailed a letter to her Pasadena home in which they wrote, “You are trespassing. You must vacate immediately. Please leave our keys in our mailbox along with our remote gate opener.”
The Quaids claim they never sold the Mountain Drive property and were never paid for it. “You both must have known or feared this day would arrive,” they wrote. “This is what happens when you purchase a house from someone who doesn’t own it.” Evi Quaid also apparently showed up at the house after she bailed from Santa Barbara County Jail following her September arrest.
It remains to be seen if the two will be back in town for their Tuesday appearances. Davis said he is waiting to see what needs to happen to get them back to Santa Barbara County in terms of extradition or deportation.
The arrests in Canada might come just in time for the Quaids, however, because famed bounty hunter Duane “Dog” Chapman said in an appearance on a talk show Thursday night that if the couple didn’t turn themselves in, he and his family would go after them. “I hope Randy Quaid and his wife are watching right now,” he said.