Former UC Santa Barbara Chancellor Robert A. Huttenback and his wife, Freda, charged with embezzlement and fraud in connection with a dispute over the alleged misappropriation of university funds, have filed suit against the University of California Board of Regents and several high-ranking university officials.
Arguing that they were defamed, emotionally wrecked and financially devastated by false accusations against them, the Huttenbacks have accused the UC governing board and administration of deception, breach of contract and failure to conduct a "full and fair" investigation of all the allegations.
The Huttenbacks' suit, which was filed Monday in Alameda County Superior Court and seeks an unspecified sum for damages, is the latest development in a saga of difficulties for the former chancellor.
Nearly a year ago, the flamboyant administrator and historian was asked by UC President David P. Gardner to resign following several years of fierce criticism by various members of the faculty of the University of California, Santa Barbara. After his resignation, the former chancellor and his wife became the subjects of a criminal investigation launched at the request of the Santa Barbara County Grand Jury. That case involved the alleged misappropriation of $174,000 in university funds for the renovation of the Huttenbacks' personal residence.