Dec. 9, 2010
FORMER MANAGER OF PROGRAMS FOR SENIORS CHARGED WITH STEALING MORE THAN $26,000
TOPEKA, KAN. – A former program manager at the East Topeka Senior Center has been charged with stealing more than $26,000 in federal grant funds from the program, U.S. Attorney Barry Grissom said today.
Chamala Brown, 48, Topeka, Kan., is named in a criminal information filed today in U.S. District Court in Topeka. The government alleges Brown stole the money in 2007 and 2008 while she worked as manager of the center’s Senior Companions program. The East Topeka Senior Center was receiving funds administered by the Corporation for National Community Service, an independent federal corporation created by Congress. The center was serving an average of 23,272 senior citizens a year, of whom more than 42 percent had some form of disability. The center provided various services to Shawnee County area senior citizens including a Meals on Wheels site, transportation to shopping and activities, services to home-bound seniors and social activities for seniors.
As program manager, Brown had authority to transfer grant funds, write checks and use the center’s ATM/debit card. She obtained funds under the pretense of paying the center’s obligation. The information alleges she used the money to gamble and to increase her pay without authorization.
If convicted, she faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in federal prison and a fine up to $250,000. investigated. The Corporation for National and Community Service - Office of Inspector General investigated. Assistant U.S. Attorney Tanya Treadway is prosecuting.
In all cases, defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty. The indictments merely contain allegations of criminal conduct.