Laguna Beach police officer accused of bilking money from elderly

Friday, December 01, 2017 12:45PM
A Laguna Beach police officer was arrested for allegedly bilking elderly victims out of hundreds of thousands of dollars, Fullerton police said.


FULLERTON, Calif. - A Laguna Beach police officer was arrested for allegedly bilking elderly victims out of hundreds of thousands of dollars, Fullerton police said.

Laguna Beach police Officer Rock Wagner, 58, was arrested on Tuesday in Lake Forest. In addition, his sister Wendy Wagner, 55, and her live-in boyfriend, Norman McBride, 58, were arrested in Huntington Beach.

All three were arrested on suspicion of elder abuse and fraud. Fullerton police did not immediately release details of the investigation, except to say it was ongoing.

Fullerton police Sgt. Jon Radus told City News Service that there is more than one alleged victim, and they are related to the suspects, who are not accused of any physical abuse.

The allegations relate to theft of at least several hundred thousands of dollars, Radus said.

The three suspects were booked at the Fullerton City Jail and have since been released after posting bail, police said. No charges have yet been filed.

Wagner, who has worked for Laguna Beach as a patrol officer for nine years, has been placed on paid administrative leave, said Chief Laura Farinella of the Laguna Beach Police Department.

"We're extremely disappointed," she told CNS. "No police officer is above the law. We are held to the highest standards. However, we will let the criminal case take its course."

Farinella also said Laguna Beach police will conduct a "parallel internal affairs investigation."

If you have any information about this case, you're urged to contact Sgt. K. Hamel at (714) 738-5336 or Detective L. Ledbetter (714) 738-6765.

You can also submit anonymous tips by calling Orange County Crime Stoppers at 1 (855) TIP-OCCS.

City News Service contributed to this report.
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