A former California Highway Patrol officer has been charged after allegedly stealing more than $4,000 by filing false time cards and claiming to work shifts he didn’t actually work, the Orange County District Attorney’s Office announced Wednesday.
Scott Helberg, 47, of Corona, faces 27 felony counts of presenting a false claim and one felony count of grand theft by an employee.
Helberg spent 22 years as a CHP officer before resigning on June 14.
He worked as a tow officer for the CHP’s Santa Ana area office, where he was responsible for coordinating and assigning overtime, but he did not have to attend roll call briefings, and often worked off-site inspecting tow trucks, officials explained.
The CHP began an internal investigation into Helberg last October when inconsistencies in his work activities failed to match the hours he reported on his time card. CHP investigators eventually discovered multiple occasions where Helberg claimed he had been working but was actually in his home in Corona, officials said.
Helberg is scheduled to be arraigned Oct. 22. He faces a maximum sentence of 21 years in prison if convicted on all charges.
“Stealing precious taxpayer dollars while pretending to protect and serve the residents of Orange County is not only a disservice to the taxpaying public it is a disservice to all of the hardworking men and women of law enforcement who are actually doing the job they are sworn to do,” District Attorney Todd Spitzer said in a news release.