Public Disservice: School Admin Uses Federal Funds for Video Games, iPads

June 8, 2011 -

A Charles County, Maryland public schools administrator pled guilty in federal court Tuesday to embezzling federal funds to buy $100,000 worth of video games, cameras and laptops. According to the Washington Post, 41-year-old Rhayda Barnes-Thomas of Accokeek may face up to 10 years in federal prison. She is scheduled to be sentenced next month.

Since 2006 Barnes-Thomas was a "Title I specialist" for the Charles school system. This year, the district received $2 million through the program to support low income students. The school district serves 26,000 students.

County schools officials became suspicious when brand new laptops meant for the school came up missing. This prompted an initial investigation and audit, according to schools spokeswoman Katie O’Malley-Simpson. The investigation was eventually handed to the U.S. Attorney's office.

According to a statement from U.S. Attorney Rod Rosenstein’s office, 200 items that could not found be were determined to have been purchased with Title I funding over a two-year period. Most of the purchases were made in Barnes-Thomas’s name. Agents found some of the missing items after searching her home and her daughter’s home, according to the statement.

Items recovered in the search included three Nikon Coolpix cameras, three 32GB iPod Touches, a GPS device, two 32-inch televisions, Madden NFL 11 for the Nintendo Wii and a MacBook.

The statement from the U.S. Attorney's office alleges that Barnes-Thomas sold an iPad for $200 to her hairdresser, and her daughter sold another one because she had no use for it. O’Malley-Simpson said the school system plans to file a victim-impact statement with the court and wants sentencing to include restitution to the school system.

Source: Washington Post


Comments

Re: Public Disservice: School Admin Uses Federal Funds for ...

Heh, I feel no sympathy. If he wants that stuff he can get it on his own time and own money.

Re: Public Disservice: School Admin Uses Federal Funds for ...

You mean "If she wants that stuff..." it was a woman.

Anyway, what an entitled piece of garbage. Stealing money meant to help children from low income families. I hope she ends up serving at least a few years in lockup. Did she think she wouldn't get caught. Although judging from her name she probably came from that same low income community she was supposed to be serving, which really just makes it worse.

Re: Public Disservice: School Admin Uses Federal Funds for ...

At least she didn't use it for breast implants like that other idiot a while back.

Re: Public Disservice: School Admin Uses Federal Funds for ...

True, at least in this case the good can be confiscated.

 
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Mattsworknameanother07/28/2015 - 9:16pm
Mattsworknameyou HAVE TO click on it. So they get the click revenue weather you like what it says or not. as such, the targeting of advertisers most likely seemed like a good course of action to those who wanted to hold those media groups accountable for one reason07/28/2015 - 9:16pm
MattsworknameBut, when you look at online media, it's completely different, with far more options, but far few ways to address issues that the consumers may have. In tv, you don't like what they show, you don't watch. But in order to see if you like something online07/28/2015 - 9:12pm
MattsworknameIn tv, and radio, ratings are how it works. your ratings determine how well you do and how much money you an charge.07/28/2015 - 9:02pm
Mattsworknameexpect to do so without someone wanting to hold you to task for it07/28/2015 - 9:00pm
MattsworknameMecha: I don't think anyone was asking for Editoral changes, what they wanted was to show those media groups that if they were gonna bash there own audiance, the audiance was not gonna take it sitting down. you can write what you want, but you can't07/28/2015 - 8:56pm
MattsworknameAndrew, Im asking as a practical question, Have gamers, as a group, ever asked for a game, or other item, to be banned. Im trying to see if theres any cases anyone else remembers cause I cant find or remember any.07/28/2015 - 8:55pm
Andrew EisenAs mentioned, Gamasutra isn't a gaming site, it's a game industry site. I don't feel it's changed its focus at all. Also, I don't get the sense that the majority of the people who took issue with that one opinion piece were regular readers anyway.07/28/2015 - 8:43pm
MattsworknameDitto kotaku, Gawker, VOX, Polygon, ETC07/28/2015 - 8:41pm
MechaTama31So, between pulling a game from one chain of stores, and forcing editorial changes to a media source, only one of them strikes you as being on the edge of censorship, and it's the game one?07/28/2015 - 8:41pm
Andrew EisenHave gamers ever tried to ban a product? Can you be more specific? I'm not clear what you're getting at.07/28/2015 - 8:41pm
Mattsworknamethey should have expected some kind of blow back. But I didn't participate in that specific action07/28/2015 - 8:41pm
MattsworknameAndrew Youd have to ask others about that, I actualyl didn't have much beef with them till last year, so I can't speak to there history. I simply feel that gamesutra chose politics over gaming and chose to make enimies of it's prime audiance. For that,07/28/2015 - 8:40pm
Andrew EisenI'm still not clear on how Gamasutra was lacking in accountability or what it was lacking in accountability for.07/28/2015 - 8:38pm
MattsworknameAndrew: You and I agree on most of that. I don't diagree that there should ahve been other actions taken. Now, I do want to point something out, casue Im not sure if it's happened. Have gamers ever tried to have a product banned?07/28/2015 - 8:37pm
Mattsworknameimproperly. Neither is good, but one is on the edge of censorship to me, while the other is demanding some level of accountability from public media provider. but thats just my view point07/28/2015 - 8:36pm
MattsworknameEZK: You can treat it as bullying or what not, As I've pointed out, I didn't like either practice, I made that clear. But I do hold some different between trying to pull a product from the shelves, and calling out a media outlet that you feel has acted07/28/2015 - 8:35pm
E. Zachary KnightMatt, So you feel confident enough to make the call that petitioning target to remove GTAV is "bullying and threatening" but not confident enough to make the call on Intel/Gamasutra. Finding it hard to take your gripes seriously.07/28/2015 - 8:27pm
Andrew EisenAs for gamers holding media sites accountable? If you mean, how to respond to opinion pieces you disagree with, yes, there are tons of more appropriate means.07/28/2015 - 8:27pm
Andrew EisenAgain, no one likes being lumped in with the bad apples. Gamers or feminists so lets all strive not to do that, yes? Could the petitioners gone about it a better way? Yes, it could have been more factual in its petition, for starters.07/28/2015 - 8:25pm
 

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