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Date:  October 8, 2014

Booking Photos from left to right: Jose Romero, Kathy Duarte, Marcus Johnson and Mercedes Agudo

Four ex-Patton State Hospital employees arrested on fraud charges totaling more than $800,000

SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. – Four former Patton State Hospital employees were arrested Tuesday in connection with a payroll scheme that cost taxpayers more than $800,000 dollars.

All four employees were allegedly paid for hours they did not work. The former employees include Personnel Services Specialist (Payroll Clerk) Jose Romero, 68, of Fontana, and Psychiatric Technicians Mercedes Agudo, 68, of San Bernardino, Kathy Duarte, 37, of San Jacinto, and 46-year-old Marcus Johnson of Beaumont.

Agudo, Duarte and Romero were arrested by District Attorney Investigators and Patton State Hospital Officers without incident and transported to the San Bernardino County West Valley Detention Center (WVDC) in Rancho Cucamonga. Johnson surrendered himself to WVDC.

All four were charged Monday with Theft of Public Funds, Embezzlement and Grand Theft. Click here to download a copy of the complaint. Deputy District Attorney Dinah Touny of the Consumer and Environmental Protection Unit will prosecute this case.

This case was investigated by the Patton State Hospital Police.

All four defendants were arraigned this morning at the San Bernardino Justice Center via video. A Pre-Preliminary Conference is scheduled October 17, 2014 in Dept. 12. This is an ongoing investigation and no further details will be released at this time. 


Christopher Lee
Public Affairs Officer
(909) 382-3665




San Bernardino County District Attorney’s Office
303 West 3rd Street, 6th Floor
San Bernardino, CA 92415



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It is the mission of the San Bernardino County District Attorney's Office to represent the interests of the people in the criminal justice system, as mandated by California State law. The San Bernardino County District Attorney's Office serves the residents of San Bernardino County by: seeking the truth, protecting the innocent; holding the guilty accountable; preserving the dignity of victims and their families; and, ensuring that justice is done while always maintaining the highest ethical standards.

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