After two weeks of harassment by a man who was described as a bipolar transient from Florida, sheriff’s deputies were called to Swami’s beach parking lot on March 6 at around 9:30 a.m.
Danny Knoblaugh of Encinitas filed a citizen's arrest against a man identified as “Scott” after he allegedly hit Knoblaugh with the fin of his board. Witnesses informed the deputies of how Scott had been acting “delusional” lately.
“He [Scott] knows the law,” says John Afshari, a member of the Swami’s Surfing Assn. “He knows when to arrive, when the lot opens at 5:00 in the morning, and leaves when it closes at 10 p.m.”
Afshari showed me photos of one of the man’s vehicles, a camper, which is seen often on public streets in the area. On the sides of the aluminum-sided camper, scrawled in Sharpie, are random weird or angry writings about the people Scott has had run-ins with at Swami’s.
A few days ago, Scott allegedly “picked up a piece of metal from a sign post and held it out ninja style, threatening me,” said Afshari. “He spits on cars. We have to ask others to watch our cars when we go out [to surf].”
Scott has reportedly been in the parking lot every day in his gray Ford Aerostar minivan, planting himself and his large dog on the lawn. He is said to stalk people and their cars. They say he sometimes he shows up on the beach with a professional-looking camera, convincing unfamiliar surfers that he’s shooting for surf publications.
Others described the Swami’s parking lot as a microcosm of the community. “We’ve had enough of this guy,” said a regular. “He’s very intelligent, which makes him more crazy. He’s off his meds,” said another.
They said they’ve discussed vigilante action to get rid of him, but, “We’d be the ones in back of the patrol car if we did,” said Afshari. So, Knoblaugh, Afshari, and another witness called the sheriff’s department to get them involved after the alleged assault with the fin.
“Crazy Swami’s Transient BEAT IT!”
After being detained in one of the patrol cars, Scott was uncuffed, signed a summons to appear in court, field fingerprinted, and released. When I went by around 1:00 p.m. on March 6, Scott and his van were still in the lot.
A video titled “Crazy Swami’s Transient BEAT IT!,” taken by locals and documenting the man's antics, can be seen on YouTube.