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Rocha allowed to stay out of jail during CCSD theft trial

Reported by: Sergio Avila
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Updated: 7/31/2014 3:48 am

LAS VEGAS (KSNV & MyNews3) -- The former Clark County School District administrator charged with stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars from the district will remain out of jail during her trial.

Priscilla Rocha was granted release by a judge this afternoon. The bail hearing took nearly two hours to get through all five defendants in this case. In the end, the judge decided Rocha is not a flight risk.

One at a time, the five defendants, including Rocha, had their attorneys argue why they should be released without paying bail.

Rocha is charged with stealing $289,000 from the Clark County School District and sharing it with the four other co-defendants including her son, Jerome.

Chief deputy District Attorney Michael Stauderher argued why Rocha should be behind bars. "The fact of the matter is she was involved in an extensive scheme to defraud the CCSD of large sums of money," Stauderher said.

Not only is she charged with stealing money, but Rocha is also accused of handing out stolen equipment to her co-defendants.

Stauderher argued that although Rocha has ties to this community, she was deceiving those who trusted her.

"All of those things and more are what Priscilla Rocha gave back to the community she is a part of and has direct ties," Stauderher said.

Rocha's attorney Thomas Pitaro argued the prosecution had to show two things: Rocha was a danger to the community, and that she won't show up to court. He didn't believe Stauderher proved those two points.

Pitaro argued Rocha has been a well-known member of this community for a long time and has received countless community service awards. She's not well known in this community for doing bad things. She's well known because she has been, since 1999, one of the individuals out there pumping an pushing for education for people who need it and trying to do it.

In the end, the judge decided Rocha can stay out of jail without paying bail, but had this warning for everyone charged in this case: If anybody no-shows for any of the court appearances, the court will most likely issue a no-bail bench warrant and they will remain in custody until the end of the proceedings.



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