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Friday, August 14, 2009

Just When You Thought Peninsula Had Hatched Weirdo of its Own, it Turns Out Accused Nude Doorbell Ditcher Is a San Franciscan

Posted By on Fri, Aug 14, 2009 at 9:30 AM

click to enlarge 'Candygram!'
  • 'Candygram!'
Like many San Franciscans last month, I couldn't help but notice the odd story emanating from the bucolic bedroom communities of Woodside and Portola Valley. On July 16, a giant, basketball player-sized man accused of nude doorbell ditching led sheriff's deputies on a dangerous, destructive high-speed vehicle chase right out of CHiPs, then fled on foot through someone's home (right out of Raising Arizona) and was finally felled with both a taser- and bean-bag rifle-blast.

Peter Allen Steele, 38 and naked as the day he was born sans a pair of tennis shoes, was later taken to the hospital with a pulse of 220. Hospital staff claimed he was jerking off while lying on the gurney.  

My thoughts at the time were, "Wow, there's one crazy story we won't have to write about. Let the folks on the Peninsula have a field day with this." But Steele, who pleaded not guilty earlier this week, turns out to be a San Franciscan. Just when I thought I was out ... they pulled me back in.

Steele's case brings to mind that of another San Francisco man accused of driving himself to the 'burbs to show people his bits and pieces. In April, San Franciscan Paul Stone was arrested for allegedly dropping his shorts in a Cupertino Target store in front of children.

Steele, meanwhile, is on parole for felony assault in San Francisco and also has felony convictions on his resume for stalking, making threats, and evading police (it is unclear where, exactly, he earned those laurels).

It's always depressing when a San Franciscan is accused of lewd behavior in our surrounding, suburban communities. It leads onlookers around the nation to write us off as nothing more than a cesspool of bizarre loonies. But it's worse than that: It makes people view the eccentrics and burnouts of this city as potential threats. I'm not thrilled to see naked people gallivanting through San Francisco -- but, thanks to the alleged antics of Steele and Stone, many folks will now be needlessly terrified.

Steele pleaded not guilty to seven charges including driving under the influence, resisting arrest, trespassing, and, of course, indecent exposure.

You could add an eigth count: Embarrassing the hometown. 

Photo   |   No, this is not a photo of Peter Allen Steele. http://www.iscootny.com/nude/3rd_anualnude.htm

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About The Author

Joe Eskenazi

Joe Eskenazi

Bio:
Joe Eskenazi was born in San Francisco, raised in the Bay Area, and attended U.C. Berkeley. He never left. "Your humble narrator" was a staff writer and columnist for SF Weekly from 2007 to 2015. He resides in the Excelsior with his wife, 4.3 miles from his birthplace and 5,474 from hers.

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