Friday, July 11, 2008

Ex DCPS principal on trial for fraud

Ex-Moten Elementary School principal George Smitherman is facing some serious time behind bars over his alleged involvement in a scheme to defraud the school district of thousands of dollars.
Wiggins and Dance soon created a shell company called Motts Sales and Services to funnel more than $60,000 from DCPS without any work in return, according to testimony and court documents.

In late 2003, Wiggins allegedly gave three checks totaling $11,000 to Smitherman, who was responsible for approving the fraudulent invoices. An indictment says that this money was a bribe for allowing the scheme to continue.

Smitherman’s attorney, Mary Petras, said in opening statements that her client thought the checks were retirement gifts.

“Mr. Smitherman made a mistake by accepting and not questioning these gifts, but he did not commit a crime,” Petras said.
[Standard innocent-until-proven-guilty notice. However...] Retirement gifts? Retirement gifts?!?! Are you serious? If Smitherman isn't guilty of fraud then he's guilty of being dumb as a tree stump, and if he did commit the fraud then his lawyer is guilty of vastly underestimated the intelligence of the average juror. Either way its frightening to think this guy once ran a DCPS school.

No comments: