PALM BEACH — High-profile Palm Beach art dealer James Hunt Barker was arrested by Palm Beach County Sheriff’s deputies on Saturday on a warrant that had been active since 2014.
Congrats to PBSO for an arrest of a “dangerous” man born in 1928 that will, for sure, make society more secure.
Regardless. Jimmy Barker, 90, who once owned a successful art gallery on Worth Avenue, failed to appear in court on a criminal traffic ticket in 2014. At the time, at the age of 86, he was charged by Palm Beach Police with driving with a license issued in Maine after his Florida license was suspended.
He was supposed to be arraigned January 19, 2014, but he didn’t come to court and the warrant was issued.
In his heydays Jimmy Barker, who couldn’t be reached for comment, was one of the East Coast’s best known art dealers. With galleries in Nantucket, Mass., New York City and Palm Beach, he specialized in 55 artists like Piero Aversa capable of giving the public “a sense of fantasy,” Barker once said in an interview.
His gallery stood on Worth Avenue for 30 years until it closed in 1998.
The past few years, however, haven’t been kind to Barker.
His house on Brazilian Avenue was destroyed in a fire in May 2008, an incident that claimed the life of the $2.5 million-home’s caretaker and destroyed his personal collection of paintings, sketches, drawings, sculptures and decoration.
On his arrest papers, Barker gave a trailer park in North Palm Beach as his new address.
He’s out on $2,000-bond after spending three hours in the county lockups.