Gutierrez, meanwhile, who has not been arrested, remains on the job during a crucial time for the city, helping to prepare its budget for fiscal year 2009-2010, which begins July 1, said Moreno Valley Mayor Richard Stewart.
Gutierrez did not return a call to PublicCEO.com seeking comment.
But Stewart, while conceding that Upland police searched Gutierrez’s home and office, said he has received no information from them that Gutierrez is the subject of the investigation.
“That hasn’t been confirmed,” said Stewart, noting that he is a lawyer.
“I talked to the police chief and he indicated that there’s an investigation going on, it involves several people – obviously it involved Bob Gutierrez because the search warrant was issued – but the focus of the investigation has not been identified.
“I’m not saying if he is or he isn’t,” Stewart added. “I’m just saying that as far as I know, they didn’t say, ‘Yeah, he’s the focus of a criminal investigation.’ We have no indication whatsoever that he’s accused of any wrongdoing. It may turn out differently.”
The Mayor said Gutierrez isn’t particularly computer-savvy.
“As far as any kind of theft of electronic information or whatever it is, he can barely send an e-mail and use his computer much less figure out some way to electronically manipulate anything,” he said.
Police served the search warrants on May 27, seizing computers, documents and downloaded data from the Moreno Valley city servers, said Sgt. Cliff Mathews, a police spokesman.
Stewart said the confiscated evidence also includes some of Gutierrez’s e-mails.
Mathews released few details of the case.
He said however, that the alleged victim is an Upland resident. Stewart said his information is that the alleged victim is an Upland city employee who Gutierrez has told Stewart he knows.
Mathews said he did not know when the case would be turned over to the San Bernardino County District Attorney’s Office for the possible filing of criminal charges.
Detectives “are still working on the forensics from the computers, so it will be when that’s complete,” Mathews said. “But when that is, I don’t know.”
Because the alleged victim is an Upland resident, the case will be submitted to San Bernardino County prosecutors, whose jurisdiction includes Upland, as opposed to the neighboring Riverside County District Attorney, whose jurisdiction includes Moreno Valley. Upland and Moreno Valley are about 30 miles apart.
Stewart said that since Gutierrez hasn’t been arrested, and to his knowledge hasn’t even been identified as the subject of the investigation, he remains at work “with the full confidence of the council” during a crucial time for the city.
“We’re in very heavy duty budget negotiations” as the new fiscal year approaches, Stewart said. “We’re also in the middle of some very intense and adversarial labor negotiations and he is a key person obviously with all this going on.”
Gutierrez has been the Moreno Valley City Manager since 2005, when the City Council selected him to succeed the retiring Gene Rogers.
Prior to the Moreno Valley position, Gutierrez was Assistant City Manager of Pomona in Los Angeles County. He also has been the city manager of La Habra Heights and La Puente, also in Los Angeles County.
Last year, the Moreno Valley City Council approved a pay raise for Gutierrez, boosting his annual salary to $266,635.