Hughson Mayor, staff cleared

The Stanislaus County civil grand jury did not find wrongdoing among Hughson city staff or Mayor Ramon Bawanan over a report of a missing hard drive.

In the report, issued Thursday, grand jurors said they were asked to investigate allegations of misconduct stemming from the Oct. 23, 2009, discovery of a missing computer hard drive at City Hall.

An employee contacted Bawanan, who advised her to do what was necessary.

The city employee's union claimed the mayor and staff filed a false police report and the employee who took the hard drive was allowed to do so.

The grand jury found that the mayor acted appropriately and that the actions of the employee who discovered the hard drive missing and had the building's locks changed in case there had been a break-in "were commendable in protecting the interests of the City of Hughson." The grand jury did not make a finding regarding the removal of the hard drive or whether a false police report was filed, noting that sheriff's investigations are ongoing.

— Patty Guerra