FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, April 27, 2012
For Information Contact:
Former ANC Commissioner Sentenced to Jail
For Misusing More Than $28,000 in Government Funds
- Community Leader Used Money for Personal Expenses -
WASHINGTON - William Shelton, 42, a former community leader in Northeast Washington, was sentenced today to a 30-day jail term, to be followed by 150 days of home confinement, for using more than $28,000 in District of Columbia government funding, intended for the community, for his own personal expenses.
The sentencing was announced by U.S. Attorney Ronald C. Machen Jr., James W. McJunkin, Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI’s Washington Field Office, and Charles J. Willoughby, Inspector General for the District of Columbia.
Shelton pled guilty in January 2012 to a charge of access device fraud. He was sentenced by the Honorable Beryl A. Howell in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. The jail term is to be served on weekends, and the home confinement will include electronic monitoring. Shelton also must pay $28,526 in restitution to the District of Columbia government and forfeit an equal amount as proceeds of his crime.
In addition, Shelton will be placed on 24 months of probation. He is prohibited from opening new lines of credit without approval from probation authorities, and also is barred from taking a job in which he has access to his employer’s finances without getting prior authorization.
According to a statement of offense signed by the government as well as the defendant, Shelton is the former chairman of the Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC) in Ward 5B of the District of Columbia. The D.C. government provides funds to ANCs each year to serve public purposes in the specific ANC area and to help pay for the functioning of the ANC office. Each ANC is permitted to establish a checking account, and any expenditures must be signed by at least two officers of the ANC, one of whom must be the treasurer or chairperson.
Shelton obtained a debit card for the ANC’s bank account, and knowingly used it for personal expenses with the intent to defraud the ANC.
From August 2010 through March 2011, Shelton used the debit card to make approximately 120 cash withdrawals, obtaining $27,129.85 in ANC funds. In addition, between February 2010 and February 2011, he used the debit card to pay directly for a total of $1,396.36 in purchases. None of the withdrawals or direct purchases were approved by the ANC or recorded in its books and records as required by law. All of the money was used by Shelton for personal expenditures.
“William Shelton is a serial embezzler,” said U.S. Attorney Machen. “He took cash out of a taxpayer-funded account for his personal use more than 100 times. Other public officials who are thinking of exploiting their positions of trust should take a hard look at Mr. Shelton’s conviction and sentence.”
“By using taxpayers’ money for his own personal expenses, Mr. Shelton defrauded the ANC, the D.C. government and, ultimately, our citizens,” said Assistant Director in Charge McJunkin. “Together with our partner agencies, the FBI will continue to aggressively pursue government officials who violate the taxpayers’ trust. We ask anyone with information about such fraud to contact the FBI.”
In announcing the sentence, U.S. Attorney Machen, Assistant Director McJunkin and Inspector General Willoughby praised the work of those who investigated the case, including the Special Agents of the FBI’s Washington Field Office and Special Agent Alexander H. Zion II, of the Office of the Inspector General. They also commended the efforts of those who worked on the case for the U.S. Attorney’s Office, including Paralegal Shanna Hays, Legal Assistant Krishawn Graham, Assistant U.S. Attorney Scott Sroka of the Asset Forfeiture and Money Laundering Section, and Assistant U.S. Attorney Bridget M. Fitzpatrick, of the Fraud and Public Corruption Section, who prosecuted the matter.