2 Drug Arrests Made at Infamous Novato Mansion

Police take two East Bay women into custody at Obertz Lane home owned by a former Ukrainian prime minister who is serving time in prison.

There's trouble at the mansion again.

No Picasso lithographs stolen this time, though.

The arrested two women at one of Novato's most luxurious homes — owned by a former Ukrainian prime minister who is serving time in prison for money laundering.

Police were tipped off to a burglar alarm at 100 Obertz Lane, in the hills above the Marin Country Club area of Ignacio, a 4:53 a.m. Monday, according to Sgt. Jay Demski. Officers found evidence of a break-in and a perimeter was set up around the house. No one was found.

At 8:23 a.m., a patrol officer watched an early 1990s Lexus pull up to the gated entrance to the mansion and approached the occupants, identified as Sabrina Cross, 20, of San Pablo and Lisa Gutierrez, 44, of Hercules. Police found evidence of drug use and arrested the women.

During subsequent interviews, the women were tied to the early morning break-in, and the women were booked into Marin County Jail on suspicion of narcotics possession, drug paraphernalia possession, burglary, burglary tools possession and conspiracy.

The Marin Humane Society took custody of a male pitbull who was in the car with the women.

Novato police are continuing the investigation.

Acting Lt. Jennifer Welch said there have not been any reported incidents of break-ins or thefts since the Picasso artwork was lifted from the home of Pavlo Lazarenko. It was determined that a large group of teenagers had been partying at the empty mansion May 27 and someone made off with the 1957 lithograph titled femme au chignon ("woman with hair bun"). The Picasso was propped up against a fence on June 11 and taken into police evidence.

Novato police have been in steady communication with Dugsbery Inc., which manages the home for Lazarenko. Welch said the property managers have taken extra steps to improve the mansion's security.

"We've had quite a bit of extra patrols, both in vehicles and on foot," Welch said. "We're working closely with the property management."


SP July 31, 2012 at 06:47 PM
See @Born and Raised response - that is how we got on the topic. The rest of the story is about criminals possibly stealing from a criminal.
Patrick Bohler August 02, 2012 at 06:14 PM
How ignorant can one person be? I'm more concerned with a person who gets his/her education from news reports.
Patrick Bohler August 02, 2012 at 06:17 PM
You, along with a few others need to brush up on the history of the American Pit Bull Terrier and as to it's true temperament. whether or not you intend your comments to be negative or not, they only serve to perpetuate the myths and lies.
Karen Green August 06, 2012 at 11:56 PM
Is no one else annoyed by the fact that our police have to spend their time protecting an empty mansion owned by a convicted felon? Why isn't the management company paying for the additional security? I know our police have better things to be doing with their resources.
Bob Ratto August 07, 2012 at 11:44 PM
Please wear your seatbelt, always...I like your commentary, and it would be awful if you were needlessly paralyzed in an accident because you were not wearing your seatbelt. Looking at the police blotter this week, I internally referred to it as "burglary week"...


More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something
See more »