SAN LEANDRO, Calif. (KRON) – A veteran officer with the San Leandro Police Department has been charged with embezzlement and misappropriation of department funds, authorities released on Tuesday. 

The Alameda County District Attorney’s office says Sergeant Robert Sanchez was assigned to carry out payroll functions within the department when officers found discrepancies with funds and overtime requests on his timesheets. 

An internal investigation and audit found Sanchez was manipulating the systems for personal gain.

Sanchez has been with San Leandro police for 19 years.

The Chief of Police Jeff Tudor released the following statement:

“As public servants we have an obligation to hold ourselves to a higher standard. Unfortunate and disappointing incidents like this will never be tolerated in this department and we will continue to review our internal processes to ensure something like this does not happen again. Although I am highly troubled by these allegations, I am pleased that our oversight systems caught this alleged wrongdoing and that our leadership team took immediate action to investigate it and report it.”

In addition, Mayor Pauline Russo Cutter stated:

“I was disappointed to hear of these allegations. However, I was pleased to see immediate action was taken by the San Leandro Police Department as soon as the discrepancies were discovered through an internal audit. The City has since hired a forensic accountant to conduct a thorough review of the internal processes to make certain this does not happen again. There is no room for dishonesty among our own employees and while the news is disappointing, I am grateful for the honest and diligent officers and staff that reported this activity. Their actions are representative of the integrity and professionalism we all expect from our public servants.”

Sanchez is now on administrative leave as the DA’s office conducts and criminal investigation. 

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