Report: Congressman suspects theft from campaign account
CLEVELAND (AP) — The re-election committee for an Ohio Republican congressman told the Federal Election Commission it suspects the campaign’s former treasurer stole tens of thousands of dollars from the campaign’s bank account, according to a published report.
A letter sent Friday from Rep. David Joyce’s campaign to the Federal Election Commission said an investigator with a Cleveland-area prosecutor’s office obtained bank security camera footage to confirm that ex-treasurer Scott Coleman used a campaign ATM card to make more than $80,000 in unauthorized withdrawals over a three-year period beginning in 2015, Cleveland.com reported.
Coleman is the longtime mayor of Highland Heights, a Cleveland suburb. He became treasurer for Joyce’s first successful congressional bid in 2012 and had the same role for Joyce’s predecessor, the late Rep. Steve LaTourette.
The Associated Press left a message seeking comment Saturday at Coleman’s home.
Geauga County prosecutor James Flaiz confirmed to Cleveland.com that his office is investigating a theft from Joyce’s campaign and has identified one suspect, but wouldn’t comment further.
An attorney for Joyce’s campaign said in a statement that “Friends of Dave Joyce is committed to working with law enforcement to ensure that those responsible are held to account.”
The letter to the FEC said Coleman repeatedly delayed turning over financial records to Joyce’s new campaign treasurer, citing family health issues, chest pains and other reasons. Records the campaign eventually received were incomplete and did not include bank records, the letter said.
Suspicions prompted Joyce to contact Geauga County, where he served as prosecutor before being elected to Congress.
The FEC letter said that while the campaign’s accounts appeared balanced, receipts and payments the campaign previously reported to the FEC weren’t accurate.
Information from: cleveland.com, http://www.cleveland.com