Stockton School Board Trustee Arrested for Public Theft Claims She’s Targeted as ‘Political Retaliation’ for Fighting ‘Corruption’

By The Vanguard Staff

STOCKTON, CA – Stockton Unified School District Trustee AngelAnn Flores—arrested last Friday alleged theft of public funds—is now, according to a Stockton Record story quoting her lawyer, really just a “victim of political retaliation, and is paying the price for raising her voice to fight corruption.”

Flores was arrested by sheriff’s deputies with bail of $175,000, facing “multiple felony charges, including theft of public funds by using her credit card to purchase fuel and food for her personal gain; grand theft exceeding $950; embezzlement by a public official; and insurance fraud for knowingly filing a false insurance claim as a result of a non-SUSD-related vehicle wreck,” reported the Record.

“It is not surprising that today with a camera crew following along, local law enforcement made a very public display of the arrest of a person who has dedicated her life to helping this community,” said former San Joaquin County District Attorney Tori Verber Salazar, who is representing Flores along with Mark Bowman.

Verber Salazar added, “AngelAnn would have voluntarily surrendered to local law enforcement. She has no prior history, no weapons were taken from her home, and she has been a model citizen who has fully cooperated with the sheriff’s office.”

The Record reported Flores’ attorney said his client’s “public ridicule by the 209 Times, a local social media account that promotes certain elected officials,” noting, “For her courage, she has been harassed and bullied by a local social media group’s hand-picked elected official,” adding the arrest “is nothing more than retaliation for her courage to stand up to corruption.”

In a statement, Verber Salazar said Flores last week served intent-to-sue notices to the San Joaquin County District Attorney’s Office, the San Joaquin County Sheriff’s Office, and Stockton Unified School District.

Verber Salazer added, according to the Record, Flores’ home last November was “wrongfully raided by local law enforcement after the intentional violation of a court order by members of the district attorney’s office.”

The Record reported deputies seized two iPhones, an iPad, a MacBook Air laptop and documents belonging to Flores. Detectives also asked Alphabet (owner of Google) and Meta (owner of Facebook) for access to Flores’ online accounts.

In April 2023, District Attorney Ron Freitas announced that a multi-agency investigation with the FBI and the U.S. Department of Justice into “any and all wrongdoing” at Stockton, noting the probe began with a state Fiscal Crisis and Management Assistance Team report that scrutinized a $7.3 million district contract approved without proper bidding in August 2021, and other alleged misconduct.

Flores, the Stockton Record said, was the lone vote against the contract, approved during the tenure of former Superintendent John Ramirez Jr. and former Board President Cecilia Mendez.

“Over the past several years, while millions of dollars and fraudulent practices have occurred in connection with the school district, AngelAnn has been working with federal investigations to prosecute those who are responsible,” Verber Salazar said.

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Disclaimer: the views expressed by guest writers are strictly those of the author and may not reflect the views of the Vanguard, its editor, or its editorial board.

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