By Brad Branan
A day after proceeding with criminal charges against a former aide of Mayor Kevin Johnson, the Sacramento County District Attorney's Office said Wednesday it will not file charges against a second former aide caught up in an investigation of city credit card use.
Credit card charges by Keith Hart, who was the chief service officer in the mayor's office, caught the attention of police investigators earlier this year when they were also examining charges by Lisa Serna-Mayorga, who was arrested Tuesday.
The police forwarded the results of its investigation to the District Attorney's Office, which made the decision Tuesday not to file charges against Hart, Assistant District Attorney Albert Locher said this morning.
Hart made three charges that raised questions. Each instance "appeared to be an accidental or mistaken use of the city card for a personal expense. For each, immediately upon realizing he had made an inappropriate purchase, Hart acknowledged his conduct and timely reimbursed the city for the amount," according to a case disposition notice signed by Michael Blazina, supervising deputy district attorney.
The charges in question were $80 to Geico insurance, $142 to the Grand ballroom on J Street and $92 for tuxedo rental from Men's Warehouse.
The insurance and ballroom charges were done mistakenly because the city card looked like one of his personal cards, Hart told investigators, according to the disposition notice.
Hart knowingly rented the tuxedo with the city card because he needed it for an event representing the mayor, according to the notice. He paid the city back when he was told it wasn't appropriate to charge the city.
The indictment against Serna-Mayorga alleges that from July 2009 to June 2012, she used a city credit card for personal items totaling more than $19,000. She was freed from jail late Tuesday and is scheduled for arraignment in Sacramento County Superior Court on Dec. 26.
Serna-Mayorga is the daughter of former Sacramento Mayor Joe Serna Jr. and the brother of Sacramento County Supervisor Phil Serna.