SANTA ANA, Calif. – A former clerk at Esperanza High School pleaded not guilty today to 222 counts of felony embezzlement for stealing more than $700,000 from the Associated Student Body.
Cynthia Marie Campbell, 64, of Midway, was charged with 222 felony counts of misappropriation or embezzlement of monies by a public officer and an enhancement of aggravated white collar crime over $500,000. She faces a maximum of 230 years in state prison if convicted on all counts.
Campbell is currently being held at the Orange County Jail on $709,084.00 bail, which is equivalent to the amount she is accused of embezzling over a five-year period. In order to post bail, Campbell must show that the funds were not feloniously obtained.
An audit conducted by the Placentia-Linda School District revealed the missing funds. Campbell retired from Esperanza in 2017.
Campbell is accused of embezzling the money by writing checks to herself, her husband and her deceased mother. Prosecutors were limited in charging Campbell with embezzlement only to a five year window between 2012 and 2017 due to the availability of bank records.
“The Orange County District Attorney’s Office will not tolerate the theft of public funds,” said Orange County District Attorney. “Not only did she steal taxpayer funds, she stole money that was intended to help educate and enhance the lives of our children. She violated in the worst way the trust school children had in her to keep careful watch over that money.”
Deputy District Attorney Nicholas Miller is prosecuting this case.