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Aug. 23 court hearing set for CPUD past general manager

  Former Chester Public Utility District general manager William D. Turner is scheduled to have a pre-trial conference Aug. 23 in Plumas County Superior Court.

  Turner, who was also the district’s fire chief, pleaded “not guilty” to felony embezzlement charges during his July 26 arraignment.

  The 54-year-old is accused of using a utility district credit card to pay a $1,720 tab at a Nevada strip club Oct. 26, 2010.

  The complaint alleges Turner later authorized the district to pay the credit card bill, without approval of the CPUD’s board of directors.

  Turner’s attorney, Robert Zernich, filed a motion that would allow Turner to not appear at certain court proceedings.

  Plumas County Superior Court Judge Ira Kaufman granted the motion, but ordered Turner to go through the booking process prior to his Aug. 23 court date.

  Turner announced his retirement from the district in November 2011. However, he continued to work for the CPUD through 2012.

  In July, the Plumas County Grand Jury accused the CPUD board of directors at the time of failing to supervise Turner. The grand jury said the board allowed Turner to spend the district’s money without its approval — including cutting his own paychecks.

  District Attorney David Hollister said the complaint against Turner was the result of a “lengthy” investigation by his office’s investigators and sheriff’s detectives.

  Turner is accused of spending the $1,720 at the French Quarter Men’s Club in Reno.

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