The UCSB senior charged with throwing a Molotov cocktail at the Isla Vista Foot Patrol’s Trigo Road station on January 1 was released from jail bail-free during a hearing on Friday under a number of strict conditions. His bail, from charges of arson as well as setting fire to an inhabited dwelling, was originally set for $250,000.
Judge Clifford Anderson ordered 23-year-old Keith Keiper, who turned himself in to authorities on January 25, to stay with his father in Oceanside, follow the advice of mental health providers, abstain from drugs and alcohol, take a job with his brother’s nonprofit Christian ministry near San Diego, and stay away from Santa Barbara County unless meeting with his attorney Jeff Chambliss of the Public Defender’s Office. Anderson also gave Keiper the right to a speedy preliminary hearing, scheduled for March 8, when the court will check up on his completion of these requirements.
The decision came after testimony on Friday from Keiper’s father, who promised that his son would begin the recommended medical or psychiatric treatment immediately upon his release from jail and proved that he had adequate insurance coverage to pay for it. The father said that he “already made a number of calls” to his health provider.
“Keiper,” said Judge Anderson, in explaining his decision, “you’ve got a lot of people who are rooting for you, and a lot of people who think you need help, so keep in mind that you’ve got a lot of friends out there.”
Keiper, who has withdrawn from UCSB since his arrest, agreed to complete the judge’s orders.