Tuesday, 16 April 2024

Mosser yet to enter plea in embezzlement case; new hearing set for Jan. 29

LAKEPORT – A Lucerne man facing embezzlement and grand theft charges for allegedly taking funds from the Lucerne Alpine Senior Center still hasn't entered a plea in the case.


Rowland James Mosser, 65, made a brief appearance in Lake County Superior Court's Department 1 on Friday morning.


Mosser is charged with two felony counts of embezzlement and two felony grand theft charges for allegedly taking funds from the center between Jan. 1, 2005, and Aug. 12, 2005. He was the center's director from July 2002 to August 2005.


On Friday, Lakeport attorney Mitchell Hauptman made a special appearance on Mosser's behalf, although Mosser hasn't retained him as an attorney. Hauptman had made a similar appearance for Mosser at a November court date.


Hauptman told Judge Richard Martin on Friday that Mosser hasn't yet hired an attorney.


“He's still trying to arrange the money to hire counsel,” Hauptman said, noting Mosser was hoping for another two to three weeks in which to make arrangements.


“Judge, it's been a long time already,” said Gary Luck, the retired district attorney who now works cases in a part-time capacity.


Luck said there has been nearly a four-month lapse in the case while they've waited for Mosser to hire an attorney.


“I'd like to get this case moving forward again,” said Luck, who suggested that if Mosser can't afford an attorney that a public defender should be appointed for him.


Martin asked Hauptman the reason for the delay.


Hauptman said it was a matter of money. Mosser currently is trying to close a business deal that will pay him a commission.


“He thinks that the deal is imminent, that it will close sometime in the next week or two,” and will allow him to hire counsel, Hauptman explained.


Luck suggested they come back on Jan. 29.


Martin agreed, noting that in two weeks, “He either has the money or he doesn't,” and can then have defense counsel appointed.


The next court appearance will take place at 9 a.m. Friday, Jan 29, in Lake County Superior Court Department 1, at which time Mosser will be expected to enter a plea.


E-mail Elizabeth Larson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . Follow Lake County News on Twitter at http://twitter.com/LakeCoNews and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/pages/Lake-County-News/143156775604?ref=mf .

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