A Petaluma man was arrested on allegations he tried to rob a man outside a San Rafael nightclub, but he says the accuser kicked him in the groin for no apparent reason and now is trying to avoid charges himself.

"It is a completely bogus charge, a guy trying to turn an assault around," said Daniel Stolz, 52, a landscaper and tennis instructor. "I'm going to fight this to the end."

The confrontation occurred late Saturday night, when Stolz went to see the band Pride & Joy at George's nightclub on Fourth Street.

His accuser, a 55-year-old Daly City resident, went to the same show with his wife, son and daughter-in-law, police said.

The alleged victim told police that when he left the club after the show, someone approached him from behind, pressed a hard object in his back and said he had a gun, said San Rafael police spokeswoman Margo Rohrbacher.

The alleged victim said he flung his arm back to disable the robber, then kicked him in crotch. The alleged robber then punched him in the head, causing a ruptured ear drum and other injuries, and ran off.

The victim and his family gave police a description of the suspect and a parked car he ran toward. Police learned the car was registered to Stolz, obtained his photograph from records and showed the photo to the witnesses, who identified him as the suspect, Rohrbacher said.

Police kept watch around the car after the incident, but were unable to find Stolz.

On

Sunday evening, at the request of San Rafael investigators, Petaluma police went to Stolz's residence to see if he was home.

Stolz was there, and when he saw police arrive he fled from the home and hopped a fence to try to escape.

Police arrested him after a short chase and brought him back to San Rafael, where he was booked into the Marin County Jail on suspicion of attempted robbery and assault causing serious bodily injury.

Stolz posted bail while the Marin District Attorney's Office decides whether to file charges.

Reached by telephone Wednesday, Stolz agreed with the essential timeline of events but said his accuser was the actual aggressor.

Stolz said he defended himself with a single punch. He also said the alleged victim's associates kicked him repeatedly while he was down.

"I was alone, there was a group of them," he said.

Stolz said he did not know his accuser "from Adam" before the man got in his face and planted his foot in his groin. He said he cannot explain what caused the confrontation.

"I'd love to know," he said.

Stolz said he did not immediately drive home because he has prior DUIs and did not want another one. He said he went to sleep in a nearby kiosk for a few hours, returned to the car around 5 a.m. and went home.

He said he fled from Petaluma officers at his home because he does not have a good rapport with the local police.

Stolz has at least three prior DUI cases in Sonoma County, including an incident where he fought with police and hospital employees and had to be restrained and sedated, according to the Press Democrat newspaper.

Stolz said he plans to seek charges against his accuser for filing a false police report, and that he has pictures of bruising where the man "nailed me." He said would never rob anyone, and in any case it wouldn't make sense to commit a robbery amid a group of people.

"The story is so out there," he said.

Contact Gary Klien via email at gklien@marinij.com ------ (c)2013 The Marin Independent Journal (Novato, Calif.) Visit The Marin Independent Journal (Novato, Calif.) at www.marinij.com