Elaine Boyer, the former commissioner of District 1 in DeKalb County, has been arraigned on charges relating to her embezzlement of county funds and misuse of her county credit card.
“As an elected county commissioner, Ms. Boyer had a duty to serve the best interests of the citizens of DeKalb County,” said U.S. Attorney Sally Quillian Yates. “Instead of honoring that commitment, Ms. Boyer stole from the citizens she was sworn to serve by diverting thousands of dollars in county funds to her personal bank account and using her county-issued credit card like it was her own.”
J. Britt Johnson, special agent in charge, FBI Atlanta field office, said, “Public corruption based investigations often stem from actions that would be seen as clearly improper and illegal to the average person. The charges in this case, however, reflect criminal actions of a 22-year veteran DeKalb County commissioner who knew fully the nature of her actions and she will now face the consequences of those actions. The FBI places a high priority toward investigating allegations of public corruption due to the extensive harm that it can cause on many levels and we ask that anyone with information regarding such allegations to please contact their nearest FBI field office.”
According to Yates, the charges, and other information presented in court: In DeKalb, the board of commissioners serves as the legislative branch of the county government. The board is comprised of seven part-time commissioners, who are elected to serve four-year terms. Each of the seven commissioners is responsible for the management of their respective offices, which includes controlling the offices’ budget and hiring staff members, contractors and consultants. In recent years, the operating budget for a commissioner’s office has been about $250,000 per year. The commissioners may use their budget only for county-related business.
Since 1992, Boyer served as the commissioner of District 1, which serves citizens in north DeKalb, including in Brookhaven, Dunwoody, Tucker and Smoke Rise. Among other responsibilities, Boyer sat on the board’s finance, budget and audit committee and was the chair of the employee relations and community services committee. Boyer’s term of office was to expire in 2016 — however, Boyer resigned Aug. 25.
In September 2009, as the commissioner of District 1, Boyer retained an individual [“advisor”] supposedly to assist her with government consulting and advisory duties on issues that affected her constituents. From September 2009 to November 2011, false invoices were submitted to Boyer’s office for consulting services purportedly rendered by the advisor. In fact, the advisor performed no services for Boyer, District 1 constituents or the county. Boyer used the false invoices as a basis to authorize payments to the advisor. Based on requisition requests from Boyer, the county mailed about 35 checks to the advisor for consulting services that were never performed. In total, the county paid the advisor more than $78,000, believing that legitimate services had been performed for the county.
After being paid by the county, the advisor funneled about 75 percent of the money received from the county into Boyer’s personal bank account. Between September 2009 and November 2011, the advisor deposited more than $58,000 in county funds into Boyer’s personal bank account [while retaining the remainder of the money]. In turn, Boyer used the money deposited into her account to pay personal expenses, including purchases at hotels and high-end department stores.
Additionally, in her capacity as a commissioner, the county issued Boyer a Visa purchasing card or P-Card, to make county-related purchases. On Jan. 14, 2010, she signed a cardholder users’ agreement stating she would not use the P-Card to make personal purchases.
From October 2010 to February 2014, Boyer made more than 50 personal purchases on her P-Card, including purchasing airline tickets and hotel rooms for herself and her family for personal travel. In total, she made more than $15,000 worth of purchases on her P-Card for personal goods and services.
Boyer, 57, of Stone Mountain, was charged via criminal information with conspiring to commit mail fraud and with wire fraud. She is scheduled to plead guilty at 3 p.m., Sept. 3, before U.S. District Court Judge Orinda D. Evans.
Members of the public are reminded that the information only contains charges. The defendant is presumed innocent of the charges and it will be the government’s burden to prove the defendant’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt at trial.
This case is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
Assistant U.S. Attorneys Jeffrey W. Davis and Kurt R. Erskine are prosecuting the case.
A couple of games featuring north Fulton rivals will be among the highlights of week two of the football season.
Both Alpharetta and Milton get their seasons underway as the Raiders host the Eagles in a battle of local powerhouses at Alpharetta Stadium Friday at 7:30 p.m.
The non-region battle features an Alpharetta team that is looking for a second consecutive Region 6AAAAAA championship and a Milton squad that is aiming for a 5AAAAAA crown after finishing runner up last year.
Milton has had the upper hand in the rivalry with six wins in their eight games, including a 31-24 victory in overtime in 2013.
Both teams feature major NCAA Division I commitments and prospects, with defensive end Andrew Butcher (Tennessee) and quarterback Austin King (North Carolina State) leading the way for Alpharetta and linebacker Quarte Sapp – who is being recruited by a number of Division I schools, but hasn’t committed yet – and offensive lineman Nick Wilson (Stanford) leading the charge for Milton.
A battle of Roswell cross-town rivals will take place Friday as Roswell hosts Centennial in a 6AAAAAA contest at the Hornets’ Nest at 7:30 p.m.
Roswell has won 11 of the 14 contests between the two teams, with the Hornets beating the Knights 39-30 last year.
It will be the season opener for Centennial, which will try to bounce back from a 1-9 record, while Roswell attempts to get into the victory column after a 37-14 season-opening loss to Lowndes last Friday.
Blessed Trinity will certainly have its hands full in its season opener Friday as the Titans go on the road to face state powerhouse St. Pius X at 7:30 p.m.
It will be a battle of former region rivals, with both teams playing in 6AAA before St. Pius moved up to AAAA this season.
St. Pius won the first five games of the rivalry before Blessed Trinity broke through with a 21-20 win last year.
Cambridge will try to stay on a roll following its 42-6 season-opening win over Holy Innocents’ last week as the Bears go on the road to take on Chapel Hill in the first-ever meeting between the two teams Friday at 7:30 p.m.
Quarterback Brian Moore completed 14 of 23 passes for 327 yards and four touchdowns and rushed for 45 yards and had two more scores, while wide receiver John Hurst had six receptions for 134 yards and two touchdowns to lead Cambridge (1-0) to the win over Holy Innocents’.
After falling just short the last several years, the Blessed Trinity girls finally broke through last season with their first state cross country championship since 2006.
Now, the Titans look to successfully defend their Class AAA girls’ crown as they begin the 2014 season.
However, Blessed Trinity faces a formidable potential roadblock on their path to a second consecutive title with the arrival of old rival Westminster – the defending Class AA co-champions which moves up to AAA from AA this year and will join the Titans in Region 4AAA.
While Blessed Trinity appears to be ready to make another serious run at the state title, the Titans will face a tough challenge from Westminster – which edged out the Titans to win the AA championship in 2010 and 2011.
Blessed Trinity will also have some holes to fill after losing several of its stalwarts from last year’s championship team – including third-place individual state finisher Anna Gandolfo, who is now competing in cross country and track at Georgia, and fifth-place finisher Bailey Willett (Georgia Southern).
Fortunately for Blessed Trinity coach Ken Haughey, the Titans have a promising group of newcomers who he said have the potential to step in and make a difference this season.
“We lost our [No.] 1 and [No.] 2 [runners],” Haughey said. “We lost our 5, 6, 7, 9 and 10 runners. But we’re not rebounding, we’ve reloaded with some super-quality freshmen and even with those [departing runners from last year] taken out, we’re still ranked highly – we’re ranked sixth in our class.”
Blessed Trinity has maintained its position among the state elite in girls’ cross country for a decade.
During the last 10 years, the Titans have won three state titles (2005, 2006, 2013), while finishing runner-up three times (2010, 2011, 2012) and third three times (2004, 2008, 2009).
Blessed Trinity will be boosted by the return of junior co-captain Mary Claire Solomon, who finished eighth individually in the AAA state meet last year.
Senior co-captain Katie McConnell – a 12th-place state finisher – also returns to bolster the lineup, along with junior Kaleigh Evans (14th at the state meet) and sophomore co-captain Maddie Heller.
The Titans are looking for freshmen Emma Rose Bagwell, Ana Rivadeneira and Carleigh Hyser to step in and fill the holes left by the departure of last year’s seniors.
Blessed Trinity got its 2014 season off to a strong start with a first-place finish at the Bob Blastow Early Bird in Douglasville last Saturday, finishing with 77 points to place ahead of St. Pius X and McIntosh (88 points each).
Solomon finished third with a time of 19 minutes, 10.63 seconds, placing behind Riverwood runners Anna Hayden (first, 18:38.94) and Elizabeth Graves (second, 18:45.78), while Bagwell was sixth (19:46.27) and Heller eighth (19:57.05).
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