Chamise Cubbinson, Mendocino County’s Auditor-Controller elect, was booked in the Mendocino County Jail this afternoon along with Paula June Kennedy, County of Mendocino’s former payroll manager.
Both women were booked into the jail on Ukiah’s Low Gap Road and released in an hour’s time on a single felony charge of misappropriation of public funds.
The Mendocino County District Attorney’s Office filed a criminal complaint on Friday, October 13, 2023, alleging that Kennedy received $68,106 in unauthorized pay. The complaint accuses the women of “knowingly, unlawfully, and serially” misappropriating public funds all paid out to Kennedy.
Attorney Chris Andrian, Cubbinson’s attorney, told our reporter Mike Geniella, “I have reviewed all the evidence in this case, and I have found nothing to indicate Chamise engaged in any criminal conduct. Among other things there is no assertion by the prosecution Chamise received any personal benefit, or that any of the public funds found their way into her pockets.”
It’s worth noting that Mendocino County District Attorney David Eyster publicly voiced his opposition to Cubbinson taking the lead of the Auditor-Controller office after the former department head Lloyd Weer retired early in September 2021.
DA Eyster told the Board of Supervisors she was not “right for the job”. Insiders within the District Attorney’s office claim Cubbinson faced Eyster’s ire after she questioned his expenditures while serving under Weir as the Assistant Auditor-Controller.
Cubbinson and Kennedy are set to be arraigned this Tuesday, October 17, 2023.