A judge ordered Monday that Randy Campbell, publisher of The Santa Barbara Independent and its majority shareholder must sell his shares for more than $1.3 million to Marianne Partridge, editor-in-chief and minority shareholder.
Partridge sued Campbell in February 2010, trying to force a sale of his shares after she said he “reneged on a deal” proposed in 2009 that would have sold the paper to Southland Publishing for $2.7 million.
Despite her objection, as one of the three minority shareholders, Campbell “gave a notice of intention to the others that he planned to sell all of his shares, as well as a notice to the shareholders of their first refusal rights.”
Judge Denise de Bellefeuille said the case was a matter of Campbell making an offer that “was not withdrawn before Ms. Partridge accepted.”
Both Partridge and Campbell, who co-founded the paper 25 years ago, will return to court Aug. 25 to sort out the specifics of the transaction, including the date by which it should be made.