TULSA, Okla. — Newly released court documents show that more than $215,000 was seized from a bank account belonging to a former Tulsa Public Schools employee.
Devin Fletcher, who served as TPS’s Chief Learning Officer, resigned after an independent investigation and an audit.
Some funds also belonged to the Foundation for Tulsa Schools, a public charity run by TPS.
While $215,000 was seized from the account, further investigations show that family members of Fletcher’s received money from TPS, potentially worth hundreds of thousands of dollars.
The documents allege that Fletcher was wiring money from TPS to a family member who was in business with TPS under the entity name “Talented 10th.”
The document says several transactions were made between TPS and the relative totaling $343,125. It also says that $105,000 was sent to the relative from the Foundation for Tulsa Schools, a nonprofit.
The document says, “TPS has not been able to document any work completed by [family member] to support the payments...”
The document also says that money from the family member’s account was transferred to a second family member’s account and back to Fletchers. Transactions between the accounts were regularly over 100k.
The document says investigators spoke with Fletcher’s family members, who say they took direction from Fletcher.
Back when we spoke with Deborah Gist about the fraud in April, the initial number they “turned over to police” to be investigated was $17,000 that went missing.
An audit from last summer into the district found that three vendors had questionable transactions.
It says, “two of the vendors were paid approximately $363,000 which there are no clear business purpose documented.”
It also says, “a third vendor was paid approximately $658,000″ and some of the money could be misappropriated.
It goes on to say that legitimate business transactions had been made with that vendor as well, so it’s unknown how much of the money spent could had been fraudulent.
Former TPS Chief Learning Officer Devin Fletcher was charged with the embezzlement of $603,992.32, according to court documents.
TPS also gave a statement regarding Fletcher being charged.
”Our commitment to the students, families, and community we serve remains unwavering. While this incident is deeply troubling, it does not define the hardworking and dedicated educators, staff, and administrators who make up our school district. District leadership continues to cooperate with law enforcement and the state auditor’s office to ensure that justice is served. In addition, district teams began the work of strengthening internal financial controls over a year ago and continue to build upon those improvements to safeguard our district’s finances.”