As she awaits a retrial on animal-cruelty charges in New Hampshire, Missing Persons frontwoman Dale Bozzio’s troubles continue in Southern California, where she faces eviction from her San Fernando Valley home over $4400 in missing rent payments.
The eviction comes just five months after Bozzio was sentenced to jail time for having abandoned at least 14 felines to die in her rented home in the woods of New Hampshire while she toured last fall. (She has since appealed the case and was scheduled to return to the Granite State this week to once again fight the charges.)
According to Carroll County, New Hampshire, Superior Court documents, the case was continued indefinitely earlier this month due to Bozzio’s concert schedule and appeal deadlines that would interfere with her right to “a proper defense.”
The New Wave rocker — whose bold look influenced the likes of Gwen Stefani and Lady Gaga — told the Phoenix earlier this year that in fact she was trying to save the mostly feral felines, and that the neglect was not intentional. This summer, after a stint living in Newton, the Medford native headed back to the West Coast, where in the 1980s she achieved fame with Missing Persons.
Now her current landlord, Marlon Polanco, is seeking $4400 in rent he says Bozzio failed to pay between August 1 and September 30. In a phone call to the Phoenix on October 9, he claimed Bozzio has rented from him since July 15 and has paid only half a month’s rent and half a deposit.
“I’m paying my mortgage, plus my apartment, and it’s just a financial mess for me right now,” says Polanco, adding that Bozzio is not fighting the eviction.
In New Hampshire, Bozzio faces at least two civil suits from landlords suing for rent and damages caused by cats.
Bozzio’s phone number is out of service, and attempts to reach her for this story were unsuccessful. But when her latest troubles hit the blogosphere last week, Bozzio told Los Angeles–based paparazzi Web site tmz.com that she would leave the property, pay what she owes, and return to the Granite State to “pay penance.”
Her August 8 show at Tupelo Music Hall in Londonderry, New Hampshire — which was supposed to benefit the New Hampshire Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals — suffered low ticket sales and was canceled on August 5. A message sent to ticketholders by venue management claimed Bozzio could not play because of an injury, but also stated that the show would not be rescheduled.
According to Polanco, Bozzio is now keeping at least two dogs and three cats — four more pets than they agreed upon — and some of them appeared following a Bozzio trip to the Boston area. He claims she came back with an Enterprise rental van and, shortly after, cat cages popped up in the back yard and more felines were spotted around the residence.
“The cats are sleeping in the windows . . . I see the cats walking around my house,” he says. “She said she was only going to have one dog. I asked for a deposit, and she said, ‘No, you don’t need a deposit, it’s just one good little dog.’ ”
Polanco was assured by Bozzio’s friends that she was “a good tenant,” but after seeing photos online of the damages to her cat-filled former West Ossipee residence, he says he’s worried about what lies inside behind the doors of his Reseda, California, rental.
The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department is now issuing a five-day notice to vacate and, if necessary, will work with Polanco to forcibly remove Bozzio.