As the trial of Kip and Nicole Macy draws near, some local gossip blogs have taken to calling the couple accused of stalking and burglarizing tenants in their SOMA apartment building "the landlords from hell." Others call them "the Bonnie and Clyde landlords." We suppose the second analogy could apply to any male-female duo on the wrong side of the law. But let's not forget that the tale of Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow wasn't only about renegade bandits; it was also a love story.
Kip and Nicole's exploits — they allegedly cut one tenant's phone line, hacked into his e-mail, and sawed through the beams that held up his floor — don't quite capture the imagination the way Bonnie and Clyde's famous robbery spree did. It seems their passion for one another probably doesn't measure up, either.
Not long after the details of the case went public a year ago, there were rumblings that the Macys might have been trying to get divorced. Assistant District Attorney Max Peltz brought up the possible split when the couple asked a judge to reduce bail, which had been set at $350,000. Peltz thought Nicole might be a flight risk. After all, if the two split up, "it is unlikely that [she] will continue to reside in Palo Alto at the home of Kip Macy's parents," he wrote in court papers.
Then, there's the fact that both times the Macys found themselves in police custody, they bailed out separately. The first time, Kip spent about a week behind bars, while Nicole stayed for a month. More recently, after a grand jury indicted them earlier this year, Kip promptly posted bail, but Nicole was left in the cooler for a while. (Nicole: If you take a plea deal to testify against that man, we got your back. He had it coming.)
As the Macys prepare for pretrial hearings later this month, both have pleaded not guilty and are now out of custody and, according to their recent bankruptcy filing, still sharing a mailing address. So does that mean all is copacetic? Hard to say. Kip's lawyer didn't return a call for this story, and the DA's office declined to comment, citing a court-imposed gag order.
Nicole's lawyer, William Michael Whelan, did offer that he didn't know of any divorce or separation proceedings. (Sound like verbal gymnastics to you?)
Maybe we'll get a better glimpse of the Macys' marriage at their next court date. If they are indeed on the outs, watch for some drama, or maybe a little sabotage. Will Nicole cut the legs underneath Kip's chair? Can Kip hack into the judge's computer and find Nicole in contempt of court? Will they pour ammonia on each other's jumpsuits?