Updated Tuesday, March 10, 2015 – 8:45 PM
By Matt Lopez
A day after he was arrested on a report of battery, Beverly Hills school board president announced Tuesday night at a Beverly Hills Board of Education meeting that he would temporarily step down from his position.
The announcement was made via a letter read by BHUSD Superintendent Gary Woods.
Goldberg was arrested late Monday night at his condominium in the 200 block of South Tower Road, BHPD Lt. Lincoln Hoshino said.
The incident involved an adult female neighbor, who called police reporting Goldberg had shoved her to the ground, causing her to hit her head on the interior of the elevator. When police responded to the scene, the woman desired a citizen’s arrest to be made, and the BHPD subsequently took Goldberg into custody without incident. He was booked for misdemeanor assault, cited and released at approximately 8 a.m.
Goldberg told The Courier the woman and her family, who live in the condo directly below Goldberg, have had a longstanding issue with Goldberg’s family, dating back to several calls Goldberg made to the BHPD over the last year reporting disturbances he heard at the residence.
Goldberg said when he pulled into the parking lot Monday evening, he admits he was driving “a little too fast” and the woman began scolding him for driving fast and not being more careful.
“She confronted me about my driving, and was shouting expletives and I unfortunately responded in kind,” Goldberg said, adding that he disengaged from the conversation and headed to an elevator, but was followed by the woman. From there, Goldberg claims she blocked the door and refused to let him off at his floor, saying her dad was going to “teach him a lesson.”
Goldberg said he attempted to walk past her to exit the elevator, and that’s when she claims he knocked her to the ground. Goldberg said he only remembers making slight contact as he walked by, but that she never fell to the ground and he never pushed or shoved her.
Hoshino said the responding officers believed there was physical evidence “consistent with the report” to make the arrest.
Goldberg said he was held by the BHPD for 12 hours before being released early Tuesday morning. Hoshino said the long hold was because there was a delay in receiving information on Goldberg’s fingerprints back from the Department of Homeland Security.
According to Goldberg’s attorney Anthony Salerno, the BHPD was legally required to arrest Goldberg based on the complaint made by the other party, “no matter how (the BHPD) assessed the merits of the case.”
There are surveillance videos in the elevator and other parts of the building that Goldberg said he hopes will exonerate him. Hoshino confirmed surveillance video does exist and that it is part of the BHPD’s ongoing investigation.
“I am highly confident the District Attorney’s office will not file any charges against (Brian),” Salerno said, adding that Goldberg used only the “minimum degree of force” needed to exit the elevator.
“Brian, in my view, could have filed a claim for false imprisonment,” Salerno said. “But he wasn’t looking at it in those terms. He just felt it was another neighborly dispute.”
For the last eight years, Goldberg has worked with Casa de la Familia, a non-profit that offers psychological counseling and/or psychiatric treatment to victims and their families to help them cope with the trauma of being either a victim or a witness of a crime.
Goldberg is scheduled to appear May 5 at the LAX Superior Court.