Bal Theatre owner Dan Dillman was taken to jail Monday after a Superior Court judge sentenced him to 120 days behind bars for for confronting two Alameda County Sheriff's Department investigators in an incident that occurred about 18 months ago.
Dillman's family was trying to arrange $15,000 bail Tuesday to get him out of the county lockup at Santa Rita so he could arrange to keep his movie and computer repair businesses running when he returns to jail to serve out his four-month term.
"I'm heartbroken," said his friend, San Leandro businessman Chris Crow. "This is a first offense with no priors, and a misdemeanor. There are repeat offenders who've committed felonies who've gotten less."
Crow said Assistant District Attorney Scott Ford, who prosecuted Dillman, asked for a six-month sentence, arguing that the Bal Theatre owner had slandered the two sheriff's department investigators involved in the incident.
Superior Court Judge Michael Gaffey instead ordered Dillman to serve four months in jail. The theatre owner also face three years on probation.
Dillman was taken straight to jail after Monday's sentencing hearing at the Hayward Hall of Justice.
Dillman said in court that he would appeal.
Judge Gaffey could not be reached Tuesday to discuss the sentence.
The district attorney's office has not responded to a request for a reaction.
Sheriff's department spokesman Sgt. J.D. Nelson said the judge listens to the trial from start to finish, adding that "if he thought that was the appropriate sentence, it's all right with us."
Gaffey was a career district attorney before then-Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger appointed him to the Superior Court in 2005. Gaffey is up for election this year but is unopposed and so his name will not appear on the ballot and he will be confirmed automatically.
, jurors heard two differing versions of what happened on October 12, 2010, when two sheriff's department investigators came to the Bal Theatre to question a contractor who was working there.
Dillman said the investigators failed to properly identify themselves and beat him up. The investigators, Sheriff's Department Sgt. Michael D. Carroll and Detective Terrence H. Montigue, said Dillman verbally assaulted them and interferred with their work.
The jury found Dillman guilty.
In a separate action, Dillman has filed a against Alameda County in federal court, alledging that he was falsely arrested.
Dillman is an outspoken character who has with city officials over issues including what sort of entertainment he can offer at the Bal.
On Tuesday, his eldest child, Derrick Dillman, 19, was running the Bal while his mother, Gina Dillman, and siblings, Joshua and Tianna, were trying to get Dan out of jail.
"Whatever happens we plan on running the theatre," Derrick Dillman said.
This story will be updated if additional details or reactions become available.