Something tells me that this was not simply a business/landlord relationship.
In any case; this is not a Real Estate question;
this should be directed to either a Lawyer or Dr. Ruth.
I also agree that you may not be telling the full story, because if your items are being held hostage, then what are your items being held hostage for?
http://www.caltenantlaw.com/ has good general information on tenant's rights in California.
http://gedlaw.com/ is an attorney located in San Jose who specializes in tenant/landlord law.
Hope you can work this out.
Shane Milne | Lending in all 50 states | NMLS #81195
No comment on the legality of what has been shared; however, some additional facts may need further investigation before coming to your conclusion submitted under Shane's Response:
"I already figured it out, here in california a "lodger" has the same rights as a renter, it is required she give me a 30 day written notice before changing the locks, so she is guilty of wrongful eviction, and in violation of CA civil codes 1954 and 1965"
Please referenced marked page #4 of http://docs.Steven-Anthony.com/Landlord-TenantGuideCA2010.pdf as additional CA Civil Code sections 1940(a), 1946.5, and 1946.5 Penal Code Section 602.3 also apply.
The question that you have asked is a legal question, not a Real Estate Question. We are licensed to handle Real estate issues, not legal issues. We are not even permitted to answer legal questions under our Real Estate licenses.
Only an Attorney who is licensed to practice law in The State of California is permitted to answer legal questions.
The Attorney that I recommend is Ron Rossi. The telephone number for Ron Rossi is: (408)261-4252.
Charles Butterfield MBA
Real Estate Broker/REALTOR
Cell Phone: (408)509-6218
Email Address: firstname.lastname@example.org