Wife of Accused SRJC Police Officer Arrested in Embezzlement Case

Drew Sheets, Staff Writer

The wife of Santa Rosa Junior College Police district’s most senior officer was taken into custody Thursday for allegedly taking part in her husband’s long- suspected embezzlement.

Karen Holzworth, 49, wife of 28-year SRJC police district veteran Jeffrey Holzworth, was arrested at her home Thursday morning by Santa Rosa police detectives and charged with one count of accessory to commit a felony and three counts of receiving stolen property. She was released Thursday afternoon after posting a $45,000 bail.

Her husband was solely in charge of collecting parking money from the district’s pay stations for at least 10 years, according to SRJC’s vice president of business services Doug Roberts. 

Although there were suspicions as to whether or not the wife would be considered a suspect, the district attorney’s office avoided comment.

“The investigation is on-going. I can’t give out that information,” said district attorney Ami Ariyoshi on Friday, Jan. 25.

Jeff Holzworth collected thousands of dollars a day and potentially could’ve have stolen somewhere in the six digit neighborhood, but as of now nobody has an exact figure. He was the only person with oversight of the parking collection system although many fellow officers were suspicious of him for years.

One of these officers saw stacks of $1’s and $5’s  rubber-banded together  and a large pile of quarters in Jeff Holzworth’s possession. The officer reported this to SRJC district police chief Matt McCaffrey who immediately turned over the investigation to SRPD to avoid a conflict in interest.

That investigation led to Holzworth’s arrest on Nov. 28, 2012. He was placed on administrative leave and retired one day before Gov. Brown’s new state forfeiture law went into effect Jan. 1, 2013.

Jeff Holzworth’s next arraignment is Feb. 6 to which Ariyoshi added, “All other suspects will be arrested at that time.”