Alameda County Supervisor Haggerty sued by former chief of staff for misuse of county funds | May 17, 2013 | Pleasanton Weekly | |

Pleasanton Weekly

News - May 17, 2013

Alameda County Supervisor Haggerty sued by former chief of staff for misuse of county funds

Chris Gray served in key post 15 years before being fired last June

The former chief of staff for Alameda County Supervisor Scott Haggerty is suing the supervisor, accusing him of misusing public funds and resources among other misdeeds.

The lawsuit was filed in Alameda County Superior Court on May 3 by Chris Gray, 56, who worked as chief of staff for Haggerty for more than 15 years before being fired last June.

Gray cites a long list of allegations in the lawsuit against Haggerty, who represents District 1 in the eastern end of the county that includes Livermore, Dublin, Fremont and Sunol.

The lawsuit alleges that Haggerty "regularly misappropriated county funds and resources for personal benefit," including double billing the county for automobile expenses and requiring that his staff work on his re-election campaign rather than perform their duties for the county.

The lawsuit alleges Haggerty used his connections with the Deputy Sheriffs' Association of Alameda County to get assault charges against him dropped in San Francisco and "regularly displayed photographs and video of naked and scantily-clad women."

Among other allegations, the suit states that Haggerty also "repeatedly used his position as county supervisor to enhance the profits on the sales, purchases and leases of his homes" and used county discretionary funds to purchase a pig trailer for his children.

According to the lawsuit, Gray objected to the alleged conduct and Haggerty retaliated by firing him on June 30.

Gray said in the lawsuit that he was told the firing was because of improper Internet usage, but "Haggerty himself was one of the biggest violators of this purported rule."

Gray alleges that he was fired for being a whistle blower and was also discriminated against because of his age and medical issues that included sleep apnea and diabetes.

Haggerty's current chief of staff, Shawn Wilson, said last Friday that he could not comment on the specifics of the complaint but called it "a

frivolous lawsuit by a disgruntled employee."

Wilson said, "It's sad it's come to this."

Gray last Friday said there is "zero accountability" for the Board of Supervisors and that his complaints to the county about the supervisor's alleged actions were ignored.

"It's a little frustrating for someone who would like to see things run properly," he said.

Gray is seeking lost wages of $110,000 per year plus benefits, as well as damages for "severe emotional distress," according to the lawsuit.

Gray and his attorney John Kitta plan on serving Haggerty with the lawsuit at the board's next regularly scheduled meeting in Oakland on May 21, Kitta said.

--Dan McMenamin, Bay City News


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