Actor Ray Buffer could be headed to trial after a comic book store rejected the alleged thief’s offer to pay them back for comics he’s accused of stealing, law enforcement officials and the store’s owner said Thursday.
Buffer, who’s appeared in shows like “Curb Your Enthusiasm” and “ER,” was charged with petty theft after Southern California Comics alleged the actor swiped comics from their San Diego store in October.
He attempted to enter a diversion program in court Wednesday, but a San Diego judge denied that request, the San Diego City Attorney’s Office told The Post Thursday.
Southern California Comics owner Jamie Newbold told The Post Thursday that diversion was denied at his insistence.
Buffer pleaded not guilty to the misdemeanor charge in January with news of his criminal trouble emerging last month. When diversion is granted and successfully completed, it results in a dismissal of the case without conviction, the spokesperson said.
But now the criminal case against him will go forward, the city attorney’s office spokesperson said.
Newbold said the city attorney’s office asked him more than a month ago if he would accept restitution from Buffer over the property allegedly taken. Because he wasn’t interested in that offer, Newbold said the city attorney’s office told him a judge agreed to deny diversion.
Newbold estimated the comics stolen from him added up to about $850 in value.
“He’ll be criminally tainted should he be found guilty,” Newbold told The Post of Buffer Thursday.
Newbold vocally accused Buffer of stealing comics in early October.
He posted surveillance footage on the business’ Facebook page of the Oct. 4 incident that appeared to show a man inside the business, tucking comics under his shirt to conceal them.
Buffer has had other minor roles in single episodes of television shows, including “CSI: Miami,” “Gilmore Girls” and “Cold Case,” according to his IMDb page.
The San Diego City Attorney’s spokesperson said when diversion is granted to a defendant, the person can’t break any laws and must complete other terms ordered by the judge that address the defendant’s conduct before the case is dismissed.