Dictators singer “Handsome Dick” Manitoba was arrested last week for allegedly assaulting his former domestic partner, a New York City Police representative confirmed to Variety, on charges of third-degree assault, criminal mischief and attempted strangulation.
According to a police report cited by New York’s Daily News, Zoe Hanson, Manitoba’s former domestic partner, said “He bit me. He bit my nose. He grabbed my neck and applied pressure.” Manitoba was arraigned Friday and is expected in court on March 26. Hanson and Manitoba have a teenaged son together but split up several years ago.
The Bronx-born Manitoba (real name: Richard Blum), 64, and the Dictators arose during the New York punk-rock scene of the mid-1970s and released a trio of albums during that decade before splitting in 1981. Several years later he formed a band called Manitoba’s Wild Kingdom which eventually included so many former members of the Dictators that they reverted to that name in the early 1990s. Manitoba has also sung with the reformed MC5.
He and Hanson co-own Manitoba’s long-running bar on Avenue B in New York’s East Village, which opened in 1999. Beginning in 2004, Manitoba had been a popular DJ on E Street Band guitarist Little Steven Van Zandt’s SiriusXM channel “Underground Garage,” although a rep for the network told Variety that he no longer has a show on the platform. It was unclear whether his departure from SiriusXM is related to the incident.
A rep for Manitoba did not immediately respond to Variety’s requests for comment.