SANTA ANA (CBS/AP) — The CEO of Orange County resigned Thursday after facing scrutiny over the handling of allegations that one of his managers sexually assaulted subordinates.
County CEO Tom Mauk’s resignation came on the same day Carlos Bustamante, a Santa Ana City Councilman, pleaded not guilty to a dozen felony charges.
Bustamante allegedly sexually assaulted at least seven women who worked for him between 2003 and 2011 while he worked in the county Public Works Department, prosecutors said.
Mauk is the third executive who oversaw Bustamante to have left or gone on medical leave since the scandal broke. He will continue to get his monthly salary of $21,130 for 10 months, and $1,465 for health benefits over that period.
County officials would not say whether Mauk’s resignation was related to the scandal.
John Moorlach, the chairman of the OC Board of Supervisors, said he’d rather not comment, but he isn’t surprised by the resignation.
“We’re just trying to find an amicable solution so we can move on,” he said.
That solution is a $270,000 pay out, according to Mauk’s contract.
“We’re stuck with the contract, so it’s probably less than what it would have cost had we just terminated him or had we gone to litigation,” said Moorlach.
Meantime, Bustamante is charged with six felonies, including false imprisonment, assault with intent to comment a sexual offense, stalking and other charges.
He allegedly called women into his office under the pretense of discussing work and then hugged, kissed and groped them and sometimes masturbated in front of them, prosecutors said.
Bustamante’s defense attorney James Riddet said the charges should be dismissed because prosecutors made inflammatory comments.
Bustamante’s hearing is set for Aug. 30.
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