Monday, June 3, 2013 | 12:41 p.m.
Archived interviewSinatra and handcuffs: Pia Zadora talks to the Weekly
Broadway actress and Strip performer Pia Zadora became violent with her 16-year-old son after the boy refused to go to bed late Friday, authorities said, prompting her arrest hours later on charges of battery and coercion.
Metro Police said Zadora, the wife of a Metro officer, sprayed her son with a garden hose, grabbed him around the neck and scratched him during a confrontation that broke out in the family's home in south Summerlin.
A police report said Zadora, 61, had been drinking with her husband and his adult son at their home when she asked her own teenage son to go to bed. He refused, and a physical confrontation ensued that eventually led to the teenager calling the police. Zadora, and the other adults in the house, then refused to answer the door or cooperate with police when they first arrived, leading to response from the Metro SWAT unit. The home is southwest of West Desert Inn and West Flamingo roads, near Arroyo Golf Club on the southwest fringe of the valley.
The initial confrontation started around 11 p.m. Friday after Zadora argued with her son about going to bed, police reported.
When her son protested, Zadora turned on the hose, spraying her son, her husband, off-duty Metro Police officer Michael Jeffries, and her husband’s son, Michael Jeffries Jr.
The teenager told police later that he argued about being able to stay up, but Zadora said she was tired, she wanted her son to go to bed, and she wanted Jeffries Jr., 32 to go home. Jeffries Sr., 54, tried to calm Zadora, according to the report, but she lashed out and scratched him on the face. The teenager also told police that Zadora punched and scratched Jeffries Jr.
Hours later, before dawn Saturday, the teenager called 911. It is unclear from the police report what precipitated the emergency call, which came at least four hours after the initial altercation. The teen told police Zadora saw him and wrestled with him for the phone, at one point grabbing him around the neck from behind and scratching his left ear.
He further said that when officers arrived, Jeffries Sr. blocked him from answering the door, and his mother and stepbrother also stopped him from responding to the police. He then went to his room.
The first officer arrived at the couple’s home on the western fringes of the valley around 3:45 a.m.
The officer reported hearing voices inside, but no one responded when he rang the doorbell and announced himself. More officers arrived on the scene, surrounded the house and entered through an unlocked rear door. The officers heard male and female voices and issued a command for them to “come out with your hands up.”
At first a female responded, “We are back here, be out in a minute,” but after a second order to come out a male responded, “What are you doing in my house?” and followed by, “come back here and get me.”
SWAT officers then took over for the officers who first arrived on the scene, and Zadora told police she said she would come out, but then the police disappeared. She told police that Jeffries Sr. said he would take care of it, and she went to sleep. She then woke up a couple hours later and realized her electricity was off. She called 911, and they told her to go outside, according to the report.
Zadora’s teenage son told police that he heard Jeffries Sr. say that “if the police force their way in, we will get rich,” according to the police report, and that his family offered him money to lie about what happened but he refused.
Additionally, the teenager reported a fight between Jeffries Sr. and Jeffries Jr. breaking out during the course of the night.
The police interviewed Zadora, who admitted to drinking alcohol and confirmed the cause of the initial confrontation. Zadora said she was upset by her son’s defiance and may have scratched her husband when he tried to wrestle the hose away from her. She also admitted to trying to take the phone from her son when he called 911, because, she told police, he was unnecessarily bothering the authorities and avoiding going to bed.
While details of interviews with Zadora and her son were released in the Metro Police report, no information was released on interviews, if any, with Jeffries Sr. or Jeffries Jr. It's unclear how police eventually were able to make initial contact with the family.
Zadora was a child actress on Broadway and starred in the 1982 film “Butterfly” for which she won a Golden Globe Award. In a May 2011 interview with Pop Culture Classics Zadora says she met Jeffries in 2001 when she reported a stalking incident to police and a relationship developed a couple of years later.