CALAVERAS, CA – Former Public Works Lead Mechanic Lee Rhodes will now stand trial before a jury on charges of alleged embezzlement of county property, according to the Calaveras Enterprise. At a preliminary hearing Jun. 11, testimony revealed that Rhodes had allegedly taken a surplused county truck without county permission to give to a friend’s son.

The district attorney submitted as evidence a DMV registration card that listed Young Jr. as the registered owner.

Rhodes’ defense attorney said the truck was never registered under Rhodes and that he was merely a “conduit to someone else.” He argued that the vehicle was transferred to the San Andreas Fire District in accordance with county policy, namely an Apr. 3 minute order that approved the transfer of a Ford Ranger truck to San Andreas Fire.

However, the truck Rhodes gave to Young Jr. and the truck listed for transfer to San Andreas Fire had different license plate numbers, according to the Calaveras Enterprise.

Judge Thomas Smith said the truck could have been accidentally delivered, but added that the evidence against Rhodes’ was sufficient to go to trial. Rhodes will appear in court for arraignment July 2.