News Releases

October 23, 2019: Man Charged with Spraying Bear Repellent on Protesters at Santa Monica Pier

Ricardo Santiago, Public Information Officer

A 32-year-old felon has been charged with spraying bear repellent on a crowd of political protesters at the Santa Monica Pier this past weekend, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced today.

David Nicholas Dempsey (dob 4/6/87) of Sherman Oaks faces one felony count of use of tear gas and one misdemeanor count of unlawful tear gas activity.

Case SA101609 includes allegations that Dempsey was previously convicted between 2006 and 2017 of felonies including second-degree burglary, conspiracy to commit commercial burglary and fleeing a pursuing peace officer’s motor vehicle while driving recklessly.

The defendant pleaded not guilty to the charges yesterday and is scheduled to return on Nov. 5 to set a date for a preliminary hearing in Department W31 of the Los Angeles County Superior Court, Airport Branch.

Dempsey allegedly sprayed the substance into the crowd of protesters on Oct. 19, prosecutors said.

If convicted as charged, the defendant faces a possible maximum sentence of eight years in county jail.

The case remains under investigation by the Santa Monica Police Department.