The president of a nonprofit that serves as the advocacy arm for all of the school districts in Riverside County was charged Wednesday with embezzlement and other offenses for allegedly stealing $40,000 from business accounts to cover personal expenses.
William Clarence Newberry, 59, president of the Riverside County School Boards Association, is expected to be arraigned in the coming days on the embezzlement count, as well as misappropriation of funds and two counts of grand theft.
The Corona resident is not in custody.
According to the District Attorney’s Office, investigators were alerted last November to possible illicit use of funds belonging to the RCSBA, along with a club at Eleanor Roosevelt High School in Corona.
The RCSBA represents the county’s 23 school districts, providing assistance with promotional campaigns and lobbying on behalf of the districts to oppose or support legislation, according to its website.
RCSBA Treasurer Tom Hunt brought his findings to the D.A.’s office not long after he was appointed to his position, culminating in an investigation that uncovered numerous instances between December 2013 and February 2017 when Newberry allegedly used the organization’s debit card to pay his bills and amortize other debts, prosecutors said.
The alleged theft of members’ dues payments totaled $17,000. Additional scrutiny of Newberry’s transactions led to evidence that the defendant had allegedly drained $23,000 from the Roosevelt High Climate Booster Club, prosecutors said.
Newberry is a prior member of the Corona-Norco Unified School District Board of Education. He has no documented prior felony or misdemeanor convictions.
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