UPDATE: Employees accused of pilfering county vehicles

By KAREN VELIE Randy Ghezzi and Max Keller remain on paid administrative leave while the San Luis Obispo County Human Resources Department investigates allegations the pair pirated county equipment, sources said. According to multiple sources, road crew supervisor Keller was caught using... (Continue reading)

Tribune exclusive, Wilcox accuses Edge of sexual harassment

The Tribune reports that Assistant County Administrator Gail Wilcox has filed a lawsuit that levels allegations of sexual harassment against deposed County Administrator David Edge. In May, CalCoastNews first broke the news that Wilcox had lodged allegations of sexual harassment against... (Continue reading)

Fraud lawsuit filed against Heritage Oaks Bank and Stewart Title

By KAREN VELIE Investors have filed a lawsuit alleging Stewart Title and Heritage Oaks Bank (HOB) aided and abetted and/or conspired with Hurst Financial Inc. (HFI) in defrauding hundreds of seniors through illegal investment schemes. The suit filed by more than 300... (Continue reading)

Con man misleads Hertel-Fowler bankruptcy trustee

By KAREN VELIE Bankruptcy court trustees are investigating claims that businessman Rob Rossi and the City of Atascadero are concealing assets of developer R.W. Hertel and Sons in an attempt to help the bankrupt home builder avoid paying creditors and taxes. Trustees... (Continue reading)

County employee threatens retaliation

By KAREN VELIE Under fire regarding alleged workplace transgressions, a San Luis Obispo County department manager has threatened to go after employees who divulged he is on paid administrative leave. “You can’t write this, it’s not public information,” said Road Maintenance and... (Continue reading)

Paso Robles Police officer presides over fraudulent charity

By KAREN VELIE State Attorney General Edmond G. Brown filed a lawsuit against the California Organization of Police and Sheriffs (COPS) alleging they engage in “unlawful, unfair, and fraudulent business practices,” on May 29. Paso Robles Police officer Nicki Woods currently holds... (Continue reading)

FBI accuses Miller of racketeering and money laundering

By KAREN VELIE The FBI seized proceeds from Hurst Financial Inc. (HFI) President Jay Miller’s home May 27 because of allegations of racketeering, money laundering, and wire fraud, according to the seizure warrant. “A racket is an illegal business, usually run as... (Continue reading)

Heritage Oaks Bank versus the investors

By KAREN VELIE and DANIEL BLACKBURN Heritage Oaks Bank is battling with Estate Financial Inc. and Hurst Financial investors over first place in the quest for financial compensation. Attorneys for the bank are chasing first position in the pursuit for assets of... (Continue reading)

Chancellor immobilizes Cal Poly’s proposed fee increase

By KAREN VELIE California State University Chancellor Charles B. Reed informed California Polytechnic State University President Warren Baker that he will not approve a student fee increase at this time, said Cal Poly Provost Bob Koob Tuesday. Students voted earlier this month... (Continue reading)

Atascadero’s C.R. Lara loses $750,000 judgment

By DANIEL BLACKBURN A trusted financial advisor alleged to have systematically looted a client’s account over a four-year period has been ordered to pay more than $750,000 to Liz Berman, owner of an Atascadero mobile home park. The February order against... (Continue reading)