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August 14, 2022

Shelby County Criminal Investigation – WOW Part II

By Kirk Allen & John Kraft

On May 22, 2022

Shelby Co. (ECWd)

As explained in Part I, the ISP has now produced numerous unredacted copies of records from the criminal investigation containing information the public needs to know. We plan on publishing them all along with a video discussion about the contents, but wanted to provide a few items in advance of the video.

The interview of former Sheriff Koonce was conducted on May 14, 2020.  According to the interview, Koonce had been in office for approximately 6 years.  This time frame is important to remember.

“After Koonce arrived, employees changed from 8 hour shifts to 10 hour shifts ( 4 days on/4 days off). After a FOIA request was submitted by the Edgar County Watchdogs and Shelby County Treasurer, Erica Fimhaber, it was learned the shift and hour change resulted in employees occasionally working only 30 hours in a week.” (emphasis added)

So a simple FOIA request for records by ourselves and County Treasurer Eric Firnhaber is what made the Sheriff realize the shift change resulted in employees “occasionally” working only 30 hours in a week?  We began digging into the Sheriff’s office clear back in 2018, thanks to an honest employee, and it was in 2019 that we targeted payroll matters.  With Koonce being in office for approximately 6 years at the time of the interview, it’s clear his practice of a 30-hour workweek had been going on for at least 5 years, making it far more than an occasional occurrence.

We found no follow-up to validate Koonce’s claim of this being only an occasional practice.  The real rub comes with Koonce’s position on the matter.

“Although Koonce doesn’t believe the occasional 70-hour pay period violates the contract, he stated they have taken measures and changed the schedule so employees are now working 80 hours in a pay period.”

We do agree working a 70-hour pay period does not violate the contract but Koonce’s belief on that point is not based on anything from the contract because we know he did not read it.  We know because he admitted that to John Kraft and I when we interviewed him prior to his resignation.

From the contract: “An employee may be scheduled to work forty {40) hours in a seven (7) day period.”

“May” be scheduled indicates they could be scheduled for less time. We note that the ISP did not make any notes pertaining to questioning Koonce on paying for 80-hours when only 70-hours were worked.

Are we to believe not a single deputy knew he was getting paid more than he should?  The answer is no because the reason we were tipped off about this matter is at least one deputy knew it was wrong.  Sadly we have not received any document from the ISP that indicates they questioned a single deputy.

When people get paid for the time they know they did not work, that is theft of taxpayer money.

Let’s not forget the Forensic Auditor’s findings of 11,808 hours that were paid but not worked.  According to the auditor, this was the result of the special scheduling implemented by Koonce.

Do 11,808 hours not worked, but paid, sound like an “occasional” occurrence to anyone?

Stay tuned for the upcoming video dissection of what may be the most worthless criminal investigation we have seen to date.

 

 

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4 Comments
  • Droopy: Master Detective
    Posted at 11:41h, 22 May

    Occasional=done infrequently or irregularly!!

    Put a pencil to a calendar. 4 days in and 4 days off rotation creates a very regular and frequent occurrence. Deputies worked 4 weeks at 40 hours followed by 4 weeks of 30 hours then 4 weeks of 40 hours and continues. This clearly is not infrequent or irregular. If an employee MAY work less than 40 that does not mean they get paid for 40.

  • Daniel Sleezer
    Posted at 12:08h, 22 May

    Is this a Kwame Raoul decision not to proceed further??

    • Kirk Allen & John Kraft
      Posted at 13:24h, 22 May

      Yes

      • Daniel Sleezer
        Posted at 15:08h, 22 May

        He must have bigger fish to fry, NOT!! Whenever has the Attorney General done anything regarding political corruption?!?! Keep up the good work!

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