Robert Rizzo, Bell's Former $1.5 Million City Manager, Released From L.A. County Jail On $2 Million Bail
In the most highly anticipated jail release since Lindsay Lohan walked out of a Lynwood lockup for women, former Bell city manager Robert Rizzo, who some say was the most egregious earner in that city's salary scandal, waddled out of the Twin Towers Correctional Facility downtown early Thursday morning.
Rizzo had been behind bars since Sept. 21, when he was arrested on suspicion of 53 felony counts of misappropriation of public funds and conflict of interest. He reportedly took home $1.5 million in earnings in the last year or so.
A judge wouldn't let him post bail until he could prove that he would do so without dipping into allegedly pilfered earnings.
Los Angeles Superior Court judge Mary Lou Villar, L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa's sister, cleared the release after he posted $2 million bail of money she was satisfied did not come from illegal activity.
The 58-year-old resigned as city manager after the salary scandal erupted in July.
Last month Rizzo was arrested alongside former Assistant City Manager Angela Spaccia, Mayor Oscar Hernandez, and five former and then-current Bell City Council members.
Charges focused on alleged misappropriation of public funds, apparently related to sky-high salaries and personal loans made to officials by the city.
Rizzo's release was noted officially at 11:58 p.m. Wednesday but observers saw him walk out after midnight.