Suspected burglar of LL Cool J home pleads not guilty

LOS ANGELES Tue Aug 28, 2012 4:28pm EDT

Rapper LL Cool J arrives at the 54th annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles, California, February 12, 2012. REUTERS/Danny Moloshok

Rapper LL Cool J arrives at the 54th annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles, California, February 12, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Danny Moloshok

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - A man who allegedly broke into the home of rapper and TV actor LL Cool J and was overpowered and held by the star until police arrived, pleaded not guilty to a burglary charge on Tuesday.

Jonathan A. Kirby, 56, was being held in jail and a new hearing was set for September 10 in Los Angeles to decide if enough evidence exists for him to stand trial.

The criminal complaint against Kirby alleges at least two prior convictions in California, meaning that if he is found guilty of this break-in, it would be a "third strike" under California law and he would face 38 years to life in prison.

Kirby was arrested on August 22 after police were called to the home of LL Cool J, born James Todd Smith, after the rapper found the man in the kitchen of his Los Angeles home around 1 a.m., fought with him and detained him, a police spokesman told Reuters following the incident.

Kirby, who police said appeared to have been homeless, was taken to a local hospital to treat a broken nose, jaw and ribs, police said.

The actor stars as a special agent at a U.S. Navy criminal investigative unit in the television drama "NCIS: Los Angeles."

(Reporting By Piya Sinha-Roy; Editing by Bob Tourtellotte)

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