Placed on medical and administrative leave in mid-December due to fallout from a workplace affair with a younger prosecutor, lead North County prosecutor Paul Greco will no longer be employed by the District Attorney’s Office.
Both married, Greco and the younger prosecutor, whom he supervises, had a months-long affair. Although the romance had reportedly lain dormant for six months, the woman’s husband found out in November 2015. He placed what Greco called “a threatening note” on his car windshield.
Greco had recently told colleagues at the DA’s Office that the woman’s husband “had [reportedly] pulled a gun on her, demanding she tell him the details of their relationship,” as previously reported in The Santa Barbara Independent. This prompted Greco to notify a friend at the county Sheriff’s Office around November 30, resulting in an arrest warrant being issued for the woman’s husband and his subsequent arrest. He was released uncharged. Contrary to Greco’s words, the younger prosecutor had reportedly said her husband had threatened to shoot and kill himself unless she ended the affair.
Meanwhile, the lead prosecutor went missing, reportedly suicidal and armed with a gun; Sheriff’s deputies tracked Greco down via his cell phone. Following a mental health evaluation, he was deemed nonthreatening to himself or others.
His change in employment, effective at the end of the workday on Friday, was announced in a Thursday press release from District Attorney Joyce Dudley. Cited simply as a “personnel matter,” Dudley did not specify whether Greco resigned or was fired. He had led the North County DA’s Office for about a year. Chief Deputy District Attorney Mag Nicola and Acting Chief Deputy District Attorney Tim Covello will continue to supervise the Santa Maria Office, said Dudley.
Greco’s case was turned over to the California Attorney General’s Office, tasked with investigating whether he had committed any administrative crimes over the course of the workplace affair.