I am a bit confused by this

Again–I try not to judge the police because I’m not a police officer and I don’t know the procedures and everything. But I am a bit confused by law enforcement’s actions in David Standish‘s case. Specifically this:

The houseboat was eventually destroyed by the police after they’d thoroughly checked it.

Why would they do this? The houseboat was Standish’s private property and his home. Surely it should at least have been given to his heirs? We know he had a family.

Can anyone who knows more about police procedure than I do possibly enlighten me as to why this may have been done?

12 thoughts on “I am a bit confused by this

  1. Leaman May 4, 2018 / 10:29 am

    I’m not a police officer either, but my first thought is that there is docking fees associated with owning a houseboat. Maybe the police did offer to return it to the family, but they didn’t want it due to having to pay the fees. There may have been back rent due on it also.

    • Meaghan May 4, 2018 / 10:40 am

      The article that mentioned the houseboat’s destruction also talked about people just docking wherever they like, which is illegal but widespread in the SF Bay area. It didn’t outright say Standish did this but I don’t know why they’d have brought it up otherwise.

      Docking fees, or the boat being docked illegally, would be a good explanation for why it was crushed.

      • marsyao May 4, 2018 / 1:06 pm

        I cannot imagine police would destroy someone’s private property without some kind of procedure, they certainly would risk lawsuit if the do that, So I think police must have offer to giving the boat to his relative, but no one wanted to claim it for whatever reasons, such as dock fee, back tax, the condition of the boats etc.

      • Pl May 5, 2018 / 12:06 am

        Sounds like the city/county impound yard couldn’t house it b/c of the situation (missing person) and they couldn’t sell it at county auction b/c it technically was never seized as collateral (like unpaid traffic tickets)

      • DIANNE DAVIS February 25, 2020 / 11:05 am

        David is my brother. I worked closely with the detective on the case. David’s boat broke free from where it was anchored in the bay. The detectives searched his boat and found nothing suspicious aboard. The boat was locked up when they got to it. They relocked it after the search. The harbor master let us keep his boat docked for months with no fee. It came to the point where our family had to make some difficult choices. The harbor master mailed me all his personal effects at no charge. The boat was taking on water as my brother wasn’t there to maintain it. I followed David’s paper trail and believe he actually disappeared December 10th 2015.
        The harbor master’s crew dismantled the boat and salvaged what they could.
        We still don’t know what happened to him. It will be 5 years this December since he went missing.

  2. Christie M Groves May 4, 2018 / 10:37 am

    IDK, maybe they meant when no one came forward the Police took proper procedures to remove the houseboat with the help of the Dock owner, maybe the Dock owner had it done. This would be very weird to have Police destroy a house boat especially with other tenants on the Dock. Maybe he took the dingy out to see to die, if he was ill. My old boss say’s thats what he will do when the time comes as he is a Catamaran and Trimaran designer. Could this just be bad journalism?

    • Meaghan May 4, 2018 / 10:38 am

      I dunno. It said the boat was “crushed.”

      • Christie M Groves May 4, 2018 / 12:57 pm

        I could have been a hodgepodge of a houseboat and perhaps a hazard to others as well. Sound like he took his life into his own hands and either sailed off or the time the Police came out before they sailed him off.

  3. kathy sells May 4, 2018 / 12:19 pm

    Marin County- say no more. The houseboat was probably an eyesore and god forbid anyone in Marin should have to look at it.

  4. Patrick Kerrigan May 4, 2018 / 2:05 pm

    As a former detective, I know of no reason to destroy his houseboat. I would think that hopefully a judge ordered it destroyed. Also, may his family did not want it since they would be responsible for any back fees, or rent. They most likely did not want it.

  5. Jessica R. May 14, 2018 / 1:09 am

    Houseboats are a money pit. I live in the PacNw where they’re a lot more common and any one who lives on one (as I have in the past) will attest to the fact that its great as long as you are able to put up with the constant maintenance that comes with it. With that, of course, comes the money required to do that plus the permits and docking fees required. It adds up quickly.

    It’s hard to say what his money situation was/is but the houseboat was likely disposed of because no one in his family had the money or interest in paying for dry storage or the upkeep and permits and docking fees to literally keep the thing afloat. There’s also property tax to consider. Sometimes you can buy them at auction but they’re usually in pretty horrific condition by the time they get to that point, so people buy them with the intent of gutting it down and starting over.

    Most likely, as other people have pointed out, there were no takers on the houseboat and the city elected to have it turned into salvage out of a lack of any other use or buyer for it.

    • Christie M Groves May 14, 2018 / 10:14 am

      Jessica I am here in Seattle Grew up in a houseboat on portagebay! My Dad bought several in the late 60’s fixed them up, he invented the cement floating dock, he also installed those for a long time they really took off. He also fixed them all and got them hooked up to the sewer system as they just dumped in the lake back then- gross. He was a Fireman right up the street so he and his buddy Rob had allot of time for these interesting projects on the houseboats!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s