Briefs: Community college employees charged with embezzlement | October 31, 2012 | Almanac | Almanac Online |


News - October 31, 2012

Briefs: Community college employees charged with embezzlement

A former community college director stepped off the plane after returning home from an Australian vacation, and stepped into custody, care of San Mateo County.

Bradley Witham, who led the information technology (IT) division of the San Mateo County Community College District until his resignation, was arrested Oct. 25 for allegedly embezzling more than $350,000 from June 2006 through June 2012.

He and alleged co-conspirator Mark Anthony Bustos reportedly bought dozens of electronic items such as computers, hard drives and memory sticks online using the district's credit card, then sold the items via eBay and Craigslist, according to the District Attorney's Office. The pair allegedly also submitted fake reimbursement requests for iPhones and a bunk bed.

Mr. Witham pleaded not guilty in San Mateo County Superior Court on Oct. 26. Bail was set at $1 million.

Mr. Bustos has also pleaded not guilty. According to District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe, the former IT technician allegedly hacked into the vice chancellor's email and alerted his vacationing partner in crime to the investigation. He remains out of custody on a $250,000 bond.

Saturday: Free document destruction

Want to declutter your Menlo Park property? Bring files to shred and electronics to recycle to 333 Burgess Drive on Saturday, Nov. 3, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Documents are limited to three 10-by-2-by-15-inch boxes per vehicle. Confidential materials will be shredded on-site so residents can watch their documents being destroyed. Paper clips, staples and binder clips are acceptable.

Electronics accepted for recycling include televisions, monitors, computers, and cellphones. You can also bring up to five fluorescent tubes or bulbs.

Don't forget to bring proof of residency, such as a utility bill or driver's license with a Menlo Park address. Businesses need to show a city license or business card.

Call 330-6740 or email for more information.

Styrofoam ban takes effect

The new Menlo Park ordinance banning the use of polystyrene containers by food vendors takes effect Nov. 1.

The law doesn't ban polystyrene used for pre-packaged food or eggs, according to the city, or for non-food uses. It also doesn't include straws, lids or utensils.

Environmental Programs manager Rebecca Fotu said the ordinance helps Menlo Park meet a federal mandate to reduce litter in storm drains and waterways by 40 percent by 2014.

Domestic violence day of remembrance

"Over 6,000 San Mateo County children witnessed domestic violence in their home and over 300 adults were provided emergency shelter and transitional housing in 2011 alone," said Supervisor Rose Jacobs Gibson in a press release announcing a "Day of Remembrance" for domestic violence victims.

Co-hosted by the Domestic Violence Council, the event will take place on Tuesday, Oct. 30, from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Board of Supervisors Chambers at 400 County Center in Redwood City. Community partners will offer resources to address domestic violence in the county and hold a ceremony honoring survivors and their advocates.

"Domestic violence shouldn't need high-profile cases to make us aware it exists in our community," said Supervisor Don Horsley. "We have the obligation to do our best to protect victims and to prevent people from becoming future domestic violence victims."

Time to change clocks

Get ready to set your clocks back one hour. Daylight Saving Time ends on Sunday, Nov. 4 — at precisely 2 a.m.

If you're tired of biannually chanting "spring forward, fall back" to remember which way to adjust your clock, consider moving to Hawaii, a state that scoffs at the notion and simply remains 10 hours behind Greenwich Mean Time all year round.


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