Smoke and mirrors: Trammell goes to prison, while no one questions how it happened

Want to lose friends in high places in Dayton Ohio- ask questions about who is ultimately responsible for misuse of public funds. I ask- I lose friends.

I’m not part of the friends and family program that makes sure our “friends and family” all have jobs.

I asked “Who’s the criminal? SCLC, Montgomery County, Caresource?” back in February 2010. I lost friends.

I asked it again in “Who’s the criminal part 2: IMR or Caresource” in 2013

The question of why anyone would think it would be a smart idea to give federal welfare dollars to a felon who had been convicted of welfare fraud just never gets asked?

Who’s the criminal? SCLC, Montgomery County, Caresource? – See more at: http://esrati.com/whos-the-criminal-sclc-montgomery-county-caresource/4325/#sthash.TEB7lQo7.dpuf

Trammell, pastor of Central Baptist Church in Jefferson Twp., was convicted June 1, 2012, after a jury trial in Montgomery County Common Pleas Court. Evidence showed he claimed to be providing meals to dead people, members of his church who were hospitalized or living in nursing homes and not receiving extra meals, and people who said they didn’t know they were being claimed as recipients. Montgomery County reimbursed $38,000 to Trammell’s SCLC, which administered the program, for 7,000 meals that weren’t delivered between 2005 and early 2010.

It wasn’t Trammell’s first felony conviction. He spent a year in prison starting in 1979 after a jury convicted him of larceny and grand theft for opening fraudulent welfare accounts for his personal gain while he was deputy director of the Montgomery County Welfare Department. He used the name of a relative in one of the false accounts, and used a man who had consulted with him about marital problems to cash welfare checks and redeem food stamps for him.

via Trammell loses appeal, faces prison sentence | www.mydaytondailynews.com.

Where is our prosecutor, where is public inquiry, where is the “I-Team”?

Prosecutor Mat Heck Jr. said Trammell, 76, of Dayton should begin his sentence now.

“Not only did this defendant steal taxpayer money, but he denied meals as promised to elderly and frail citizens,” Heck said in a statement. “It is now time that he start serving the sentence he earned and deserves for stealing from those most in need. His conduct over many years is shameful.”

When is Mat Heck going to investigate the people who repeatedly signed off on the contract to Trammell, and continued to pay invoices without any question? Who was the genius who approved this in the first place?

Accountability is nonexistent in Dayton unless of course you are a convenient scapegoat like Reverend Trammell.

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11 Responses

  1. Dave C. October 19, 2013 / 10:22 am
    If you are going to steal, don’t draw attention to yourself by wearing a silly hat.

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  2. Diane October 19, 2013 / 10:31 am
    Come on, David. Don’t you know? Trammell’s black, so if you ask the tough questions, you’re a racist. 

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  3. Dave C. October 19, 2013 / 10:36 am
    In prison, does he get a silly orange hat to match the orange jumpsuit? Just wondering……

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  4. Hall October 19, 2013 / 11:48 am
    What crime would the county commissioners (or whoever) be guilty of? Not defending anyone, just wondering. 

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  5. David Esrati October 19, 2013 / 12:16 pm

    @Diane- I’m not asking about Trammell- I’m asking about the people who awarded him the contract, administered the contract and reviewed the invoices for almost 20 years without question.
    And @Hall- what would they be guilty of? More than likely kickbacks, guarantees of political endorsements for starters- never mind the fact that they weren’t doing their job properly administering and tracking public funds.

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  6. djw October 20, 2013 / 5:41 pm
    When is Mat Heck going to investigate the people who repeatedly signed off on the contract to Trammell, and continued to pay invoices without any question? 
    These people are obviously guilty of bad judgment. But–and I’m not being snarky here, I’m asking only because its not clear from your commentary–what statute did they violate? Is it a crime to contract with a convicted felon for the provision of social services? Do you have evidence that the people who awarded Trammell the contract were involved in the fraud directly? If the answer to these questions is no, which Statute in the Ohio Criminal code do you have reason to believe Montgomery county officials violated? This doesn’t seem like a trivial detail if you’re calling for prosecutorial action.
    A bit of clarity about this would make your commentary on this issue even more valuable. I’m no fan of Heck, but bad judgement isn’t criminal. If this is a case of bad judgment and bad goverance, many of us should work to hold County officials accountable, but probably not our prosecutor in his official capacity.  

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  7. djw October 20, 2013 / 6:10 pm
    I didn’t notice the above exchange with Hall before I posted.
    what would they be guilty of? More than likely kickbacks
    That’s an extraordinary claim, David. You think there’s a greater than 50% chance they recieved kickbacks from Trammell? What is your evidence for this? So far all you’ve argued is that some political officials exercised some bad judgment. If you’ve got concrete evidence of kickbacks to back up this claim, I wish you’d either share it with your readers or explain why you can’t or won’t.
    guarantees of political endorsements for starters-
    Why assume “guarantees”? People like this often operate on implied understandings; we scratch your back, you use your political influence on our behalf-type arrangements are unfortunately quite common, but that doesn’t mean they’re explicit quid pro quo arrangements. And even if such words were uttered, there’s no good reason to think there’s likely to be a paper trail or other evidence that would be sufficient to make the case in a court of law. This is precisely the sort of arrangement that can be done without actual communication.
    never mind the fact that they weren’t doing their job properly administering and tracking public funds. 
    Is this a crime? What statute would this violate?
    I’m not saying this story doesn’t deserve more investigation–it clearly does–but based on what you’ve been presented, I don’t see a strong case for prosecutors to get involved now. The evidence of criminal wrongdoing you’ve produced is nowhere near sufficient. 

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  8. Dave C. October 20, 2013 / 6:58 pm
    Come on! At some point, negligence becomes criminal. Those responsible for overseeing the financing of Trammell are clearly negligent, and possibly criminal, and this possibly criminal behavior needs fuller investigation. 
    ———–
    At the very least, the obvious negligence of those individuals should result in termination of employment. 
    ————
    Some of the machinations of our local government resemble those of a third-world nation.

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  9. David Esrati October 20, 2013 / 8:21 pm

    @DJW- any moron investigating this would wonder what government employee would take a look at a pool of bidders for distributing welfare money, and award the contract to someone convicted of welfare fraud. That’s just for starters.

    That for almost 20 years, receipts weren’t checked, books audited, or services reviewed- says someone was asleep at the wheel. Spending government money without tracking it- and accounting for it- is why we have whistle blower laws.

    Obviously, the flow of funds was kept going because someone was getting something in return- be it kickbacks, votes, political access to church leaders- something. They don’t just hand out money without scrutiny to anyone do they?

    Remember- I’m not an investigative journalist or law enforcement- I’m just the person that asks questions and gets good tips. Something should be smelling bad to someone other than me.

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  10. djw October 20, 2013 / 8:55 pm
    At some point, negligence becomes criminal.
    It certainly should! But is the particular negligence at that point? I have no idea, but I’d check the relevant statutes and figure out exactly what law I’m claiming has been violated before demanding the prosecutor to get involved.  

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  11. Dave C. October 20, 2013 / 11:01 pm
    Anybody remember this from a few years ago?
    Mar. 25–DAYTON, Ohio — A manager with Parking Management Inc. is suspected of embezzling $249,000 from the city’s transportation center parking garage over 14 months, city administration said.
    PMI manages the garage for the city and it pays PMI a portion of the revenue. The PMI employee is accused of taking receipts from the garage before depositing them into city accounts, according to the city’s statement released Tuesday.
    The embezzlement occurred between December 2002 and January 2004.
     
    City of Dayton was being robbed of around $18,000 per month using a fairly unsophisticated scheme ( fake rubber stamp) and it took them over a year to discover it and do something about it.  The person stealing the money is obviously guilty of a crime,  but so is the person responsible for managing the relationship with the vendor PMI!
     
    I think this type of thing happens all the time in City of Dayton. Third-world fiscal management at its finest! 

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