Man arrested after twice breaching Prince Harry & Meghan Markle’s Montecito estate
A Ohio man got onto the former British royals' California property twice last December
The California estate of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle was reportedly invaded twice last December by an intruder.
TMZ reports that law enforcement says a 37-year-old man named Nickolas Brooks was caught by Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s officers at the couple’s Montecito home on Dec. 24 and was let go with a warning.
Brooks was found trespassing on the $14.65M property again on Dec. 26 and was then arrested. According to sources, Brooks drove from Ohio to California but it’s unclear as to why he went to the home or whether the Duke or Duchess of Sussex were there at the time. He was charged with one count of misdemeanor trespassing.
The news comes a week following the couple’s highly anticipated interview with Oprah Winfrey where he revealed his fears for the safety of his family.
In the interview, Harry revealed that Buckingham Palace revoked their security privileges after they stepped down from their senior royal duties and moved to California, according to Daily Mail. The couple began to ink deals with Netflix and Spotify – worth $100M and $25M respectively – for extra income in order to cover their expenses for security and after being “cut off financially” in 2020.
Harry, 36, and brother William, 39, inherited $29M from their late mother, Princess Diana that was held in a trust until they turned 25.
“I’ve got what my mum left me, and without that, we would not have been able to do this,” Prince Harry told Winfrey. He added, “From my perspective, all I needed was enough money to be able to pay for security to keep my family safe.”
It was revealed that mogul Tyler Perry provided one of his homes and a security detail to the couple once they moved to Los Angeles until they “figured out” what they were going to do before the global lockdown due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“I then got told, short notice, that security was going to be removed,” Harry explained. “By this point, courtesy of the Daily Mail, the world knew our exact location. So, suddenly it dawned on me: the borders could be closed, we’re going to have our security removed, who knows how long lockdown is going to be the world knows where we are, it’s not safe, it’s not secure, and we probably need to get out of here,”
According to the Daily Mail at the time, security for the couple costs up to $5.5M a year – a sum previously paid by British taxpayers through the Metropolitan Police budget. Harry said the removal of his protection came as a “shock” to him.
“I never thought I would have my security removed because I was born into this position. I inherited the risk. So, that was a shock to me,” Harry said.
Markle said she wrote letters to the British royal family pleading to protect Harry despite security being revoked for her and their son Archie.
“It’s very clear the protection of me or Archie is not a priority. I accept that, that is fine. Please keep my husband safe. I see the death threats, I see the racist propaganda. Please keep him safe. Please don’t pull his security and announce to the world when he and we are most vulnerable.”
Have you subscribed to theGrio’s podcast “Dear Culture”? Download our newest episodes now!