Last night, I sent an email to Delaware Attorney General Matt Denn about the ongoing problem in Delaware concerning fraud and theft of taxpayer funds in Delaware from various state agencies and organizations dependent on state funding. Today, Sonia Augusthy, the head of the Civil Rights and Public Trust division sent me an email regarding my concerns. She sent me a list of what that division has done since they were created in 2015. I was shocked at the amount of names but since I primarily write about education, it is sad to see how rampant fraud and theft is across the state. I was not away Shanna Simmens from Providence Creek Academy had been indicted and is awaiting prosecution. This is the email sent to me from Sonia Augusthy:
Thank you for your email last night regarding the Indian River Fire Company. As you may know, the Office of Civil Rights and Public Trust conducts reviews of investigations and reports referred by the State Auditor’s Office. It is our understanding that the matters referred to in your email have also been reported to the State Auditor’s Office, which has a review pending. The Office of Civil Rights and Public Trust will act on any matters referred from that office.
The Office of Civil Rights and Public Trust was recently asked by a member of the media for criminal cases it has brought since its creation in 2015 and so we are providing that to you as information in response to a general point you made in your email.
Some resolved OCRPT cases include:
- Tennell Brewington of Family Foundations Academy pled guilty in 2017 to Unlawful Use of a Credit Card, a felony, and to Official Misconduct.
- Sean Moore of Family Foundations Academy was prosecuted federally with OCRPT as part of the investigation: https://www.delawareonline.com/story/news/crime/2016/11/03/delaware-charter-school-leader-pleads-guilty-theft/93229068/
- Christie Kahn pled guilty to Theft Under $1500 and Official Misconduct for diverting checks sent to the Department of Health and Social Services
- Former Principal Noel Rodriguez of Academy of Dover was prosecuted federally with OCRPT part of the investigation: https://www.justice.gov/usao-de/pr/former-dover-charter-school-principal-sentenced-prison
- Pace Campbell of Wilmington Manor Fire Company pled guilty in 2017 to felony Theft and Forgery Second Degree for embezzling funds
- Justin Oakley of Millville Volunteer Fire Department pled guilty to felony Theft in 2017 for embezzling funds
- Delaware Department of Education/April Hill-Addison, Theft by False Pretense, Official Misconduct
OCRPT along with the DOJ Criminal and Fraud divisions and DHSS investigated and OCRPT prosecuted a number of state employees for issuing and benefiting from fraudulent EBT benefits, with guilty pleas as follows:
- Allison Rivera- Theft over $1500, Unlawful Use of a Payment Card, Falsifying Business Records
- Angelette Brown- Pled to Theft over $1500, Unlawful Use of a Payment Card, Official Misconduct
- Detrich Simmons-Heath- Theft over $50,000, Falsifying Business Records, Official Misconduct
- Nicole Stevens- Theft Over $1500, Forgery First Degree, Official Misconduct
- Shirlene Davis- Theft Over $50,000
- Kamilah Laws- Theft, Official Misconduct
- Joellen Edwards- Theft Over $100,000, Official Misconduct
Pending OCRPT cases:
· Providence Creek/Shana Simmens, has been indicted and is pending prosecution.
· Mid Sussex Rescue/Heather McCabe, has been indicted and is pending prosecution.
· Newport/Michael Capriglione, has been indicted and is pending prosecution.
Deputy Attorney General
Director, Office of Civil Rights & Public Trust
Delaware Department of Justice
820 N. French Street
Wilmington, DE 19801
I am very curious why Patrick Miller is NOT on this list. Why hasn’t he been indicted at this point for his theft of funds at Indian River School District? The auditor’s report came out in November of 2016. Here we are, one year and nine months later and nothing. I’m not giving up on this one. The longer they do nothing the more inclined I am to believe there is a cover-up going on. Especially since Miller will assuredly not go down alone when all is said and done. I’m talking specifically about Delaware Secretary of Education Dr. Susan Bunting.
Augusthy’s email also confirms the Auditor of Accounts office is, at a minimum, conducting a review of Indian River Volunteer Fire Company. I would say it should be a full-blown investigation. Which means Patrick Miller has not told the members of the fire company, that he is President of, they are being looked at by the Auditor of Accounts office. So those who will believe Patrick Miller and whatever he says, you might want to think very carefully about how you choose to align yourself at this point.