Former Country Club Hills Police Chief Pleads Guilty To Obstruction Of Justice
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – Regina R. Evans, former police chief for Country Club Hills., Ill., appeared in federal court in Springfield again today to enter pleas of guilty to obstruction of justice, witness tampering, and conspiracy to obstruct justice and witness tampering in the federal investigation of her role in a grant fraud scheme. Evans, 50, previously pled guilty, on June 17, 2013, to charges of fraud related to a $1.25 million state grant awarded in 2009 to We Are Our Brother’s Keeper, a not-for-profit program that Evans owned with her husband, Ronald W. Evans, Jr. Ronald Evans has also pleaded guilty to the fraud scheme and is scheduled to be sentenced on Dec. 2, 2013.
Regina Evans appeared this morning before U.S. District Judge Sue E. Myerscough and entered an open plea of guilty to one count each of obstruction of justice, witness tampering, and conspiracy to obstruct justice and witness tampering. Sentencing in this case is scheduled on Oct. 15, 2013, the same date of sentencing in Regina Evans’ fraud case. Regina Evans remains in the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service.
Regina Evans was charged in this case in March 2013, along with her brother, Ricky McCoy, 52, of Chicago. The next court date for the case against McCoy is scheduled for status conference on Aug. 28, 2013. In addition to the charges with his sister, McCoy is also charged with three counts of money laundering. According to the indictment, McCoy assisted the Evanses in the management of We Are Our Brother’s Keeper.
In today’s court hearing and according to court documents, Regina Evans conspired with others to have a person identified as Individual A create a false story for law enforcement, the grand jury, and as a witness in a court proceeding, to falsely represent that the individual performed actual work under the grant awarded to We Are Our Brother’s Keeper. In fact, Individual A performed no such work and the checks issued to Individual A were merely a means to conceal grant funds converted to cash and returned to the benefit of the Evanses. The false story created for Individual A falsely represented that Individual A worked as a teacher under the grant, and instructed students on “soft skills,” to include manners, how to dress for an interview, how to groom themselves, how to behave in interviews and how to write a resume, when in fact, Regina Evans knew the story was false and intended to obstruct the investigation of the grant fraud.
Members of the public are reminded that the indictment charging McCoy remains as merely an accusation; the defendant is presumed innocent unless proven guilty.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Timothy A. Bass is prosecuting the case on behalf of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Central District of Illinois. The ongoing investigation is being conducted by participating agencies of the Central District of Illinois’ U.S. Attorney’s Office’s Public Corruption Task Force including the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, Chicago Division; the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigations; and, the Illinois Secretary of State Office of Inspector General. Individuals who wish to provide information to law enforcement regarding matters of public corruption are urged to call the U.S. Attorney’s Office at 217-492-4450.
The maximum statutory penalty for each count of the offenses charged is as follows: obstruction of justice – up to 10 years in prison; witness tampering – up to 20 years in prison; conspiracy to obstruct justice and witness tampering – up to five years in prison; and for money laundering - up to 20 years in prison. Regina Evans faces additional penalties of up to 10 years in prison to be served consecutive to any sentence ordered for the underlying offenses because the offenses were committed while the defendant was on pre-trial release.