Woman arraigned for allegedly harassing a comedian

Defendant allegedly used dog tag from photo to track victim, report shows.

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Yasemin Yarkin pleaded not guilty to criminal harassment in Edgartown District Court on Aug. 4.

A woman was arraigned in Edgartown District Court Thursday for criminal harassment. 

Yasemin Yarkin, who appeared virtually from the Dukes County jail, pleaded not guilty to the charge. 

Yarkin described herself to the court as a German national, a tourist, and a pediatrician.

“Briefly, the alleged victim is a comedian,” Cape and Islands Assistant District Attorney Matt Palazzolo said. “He is from off-Island, out of state. He says that the defendant before you has been tracking him for an extended period of time. She showed up in his office in Los Angeles, showed up at his hotel after he performed yesterday, and actually, literally, followed him to the police station as he went there to report the crime.”  

Palazzolo noted the victim had been granted a temporary restraining order. 

Palazzolo requested a stay away/no contact condition be set. 

Judge Benjamin Barnes denied a continuance of the restraining order because the alleged victim didn’t appear in court to support the request, but accepted the stay away/no contact condition. Judge Barnes ordered Yarkin released from the Dukes County jail on her own recognizance, provided she came directly to the courthouse to meet with the probation department and her court-appointed attorney, Ryan Searle. 

A police report obtained by the Times on Friday shows the comedian came into the Oak Bluffs Police Station lobby on Tuesday “yelling for help” and “clearly distraught and scared.”

Yarkin allegedly came into the station behind him and sat on a bench.

The comedian “started frantically yelling that Yarkin was following and stalking him,” a report states. Lt. Nicholas Curelli “observed Yarkin seated calmly in the lobby and not replying to any of [the comedian’s] statements.”

During an interview the comedian told Oak Bluffs Police that Yarkin “has been following him and harassing him since 2020…,” a report states. “He told us today that Yarkin called him and asked him to go to breakfast. He told her that he didn’t want to speak with her and to stop calling him. He told us that she later appeared in his hotel lobby (Pequot Hotel) looking to speak with him and left him a note. [The comedian] told us that he ignored the message and later walked into O.B. He told us that as he was walking near the Steamship Pier he felt someone tap his shoulder and he saw that it was Yarkin. He told us that he believed that she was following him and he was very scared of what she would do. He told us that he then ran to OBPD for help.”

The comedian went on to tell police the alleged problems with Yarkin have been ongoing. 

“He told us that in 2020 she emailed him about performing in Germany and he referred her to his agent,” a report states. “He told us that she showed up at his unpublished work studio in Los Angeles in 2021. He told us that he reluctantly agreed to have a coffee with her. He told her that he was not interested in a relationship personally or professionally. He told us that during that same weekend she followed him to shows in Oakland and Chicago and asked him for pictures. He told us that she continually messaged him on Facebook and Instagram and he’d block the messages but she would create new accounts and continue to message him.”

The comedian told police Yarkin was allegedly able to obtain his telephone number in an unorthodox manner. 

“He told us that she was able to locate his cell phone number by zooming in on an Instagram photo of his dog who had an ID tag with his phone number on it,” a report states. “He told us that he believed that she was dangerous when she asked him about his brother visiting. He told us that he never publicly mentions his family. He told us that she showed up at 4 shows in Tampa and even the staff felt something was odd. He told us that he told management to bar her from his shows and he sent pictures to the venues. He told us that he believed that she last showed up to a show at Mohegan Sun in May of 2021. He told us that he has never had a relationship with her but he is in fear of her.”

Police interviewed Yarkin and that she allegedly corroborated much of what the comedian had said after her Miranda warnings were read.

“She signed the waiver and agreed to speak with us,” a report states. “The interview was recorded. In summary, she told us that she has gone to several of [the comedian’s] shows. She told us that she learned of his home address by studying the particular route he posted of a motorcycle trip on his social media. She corroborated [the comedian’s account] of how she located his cell phone number. She told us that she had coffee with him in California last year and that is the extent of their relationship. She told me that she has tried to contact him several times through social media but he [has] blocked her. She told us that last night she went to his show at the Strand Theater. She told us that she followed [the comedian] back to his hotel without his knowledge. She told us that she called him this morning and when he hung up on her she went to his hotel and left a message in an envelope with the manager asking [the comedian] again to meet. She told us that she waited in the lobby but [the comedian] never retrieved the envelope. She told us that later that day she saw him in the area of the ferry terminal and wanted to talk to him. She told us that he then came to the police station and she followed him.”

When asked, Yarkin allegedly admitted her actions could have made the comedian fearful, according to a report. Yarkin was subsequently arrested in the interview room and taken to the Dukes County jail. 

 

 

 

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