City: Murrieta Employee Accused of Embezzlement on Paid Admin Leave

Yolanda Huerta's booking photo, courtesy of the Riverside County Sheriff's Department.
Yolanda Huerta's booking photo, courtesy of the Riverside County Sheriff's Department.
A Murrieta woman accused of stealing more than $20,000 from a city employee's union is now free on bail, and on paid administrative leave from her position with the city, Patch has learned.

52-year-old Yolanda Huerta was arrested on Thursday, on suspicion of embezzlement and grand theft charges following a weeks-long investigation, according to jail records and police reports.

Murrieta Police Lt. Tony Conrad says Huerta, a city employee, served as the treasurer and secretary of the Murrieta General Employees Association from Nov. 2011 to Dec. 2013— and that the organization contacted police on Feb. 6 regarding a possible embezzlement.

"With this title, Ms. Huerta was responsible for and had access to the General Employees Association checking account," he said.  "During that same time frame, approximately $21,000 was reported embezzled from the account."

Police looked into the theft, and pegged Huerta as the person responsible, according to the lieutenant. 

"After investigating the allegation, it was determined Ms. Huerta did in fact embezzle the funds from the account and use those funds for personal / unauthorized purchases," Conrad said.

Huerta was then arrested on March 13 and taken to the Murrieta jail, where she posted a $22,000 bond the same day, according to jail records.

Conrad said the case was being turned over to the District Attorney's office, but as of Monday afternoon, that agency had yet to make a filing decision regarding criminal charges, according to D.A. Spokesman John Hall.

Murrieta's Assistant City Manager, Jim Holston, told Patch that Huerta was placed on paid administrative leave as soon as the city learned of the police investigation into her alleged actions.  He said state law dictates she receive compensation during the leave.

The Press Enterprise reports that Huerta worked for Murrieta as a development services technician in the building safety department since 2002.

Cousin Clem April 13, 2014 at 10:54 PM
Someone deleted all my comments to this article since yesterday. I find that very annoying.
Cousin Clem April 13, 2014 at 10:56 PM
anyway yesterday I posted the news that the DA has filed the charges on April 10. About a month ago she was arrested.


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