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Feds file charges against Cleveland city employee

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Prosecutors say recreation division worker Robert Fitzpatrick conspired to commit theft of federal {dollars}.

CLEVELAND — EDITOR’S NOTE: The video above is from our earlier reporting on Jan. 13, 2021

Federal prosecutors at present laid out expenses towards a metropolis worker who has shut ties to Cleveland Councilman Ken Johnson, who’s on the heart of an FBI investigations first revealed this week by 3News.

The fees say Robert Fitzpatrick for years signed timesheets every month as documentation for work he carried out for a councilman and for which he was paid immediately from a councilman’s pocket.

However the prosecutors say Fitzpatrick by no means truly carried out the work, claiming the councilman used the signed timesheets to acquire $1,200 expense reimbursement from the town. The submitting doesn’t element how a lot the councilman obtained via the scheme.

Learn the indictment right here

Former reporter Mark Naymik, who’s now with 3News, documented in 2018 and 2019 that Johnson had obtained greater than $160,000 over 10 years with receipts signed by Fitzpatrick. The observe was ended after targeted consideration on it.

Prosecutors filed what is known as a invoice of knowledge Friday, suggesting the defendant is coopering with authorities. The fees don’t determine the councilman by identify or the council assist that prosecutors say assisted within the transaction every month, though they do say Fitzpatrick and Johnson have had a private relationship for 40 years. reported in 2018 that public data present Fitzpatrick and the councilman as soon as shared an deal with. The positioning additionally reported that 12 months that Johnson has turn out to be a guardian to at the very least 11 boys between 1990 and 2016, and a number of the boys lived for a time at his dwelling.

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The FBI is investigating Johnson and his aide, Garnell Jamison, in response to subpoenas despatched to Metropolis Corridor and obtained this week by 3News. The subpoenas additionally search data on Ozell Dobbins, a former metropolis commissioner with shut ties to Johnson.

Jamison and Dobbins additionally labored for the now shuttered nonprofit known as the Buckeye Shaker Sq. Improvement Corp., which obtained federal cash from the town to revitalize neighborhoods in Johnson’s ward. Johnson used his discretion as a councilman to earmark federal cash to the nonprofit, however the metropolis ultimately reduce off the group for failing to element the way it spent the cash.

Johnson, Jamison and Dobbins haven’t been charged with any crimes. 3News has reached out to Fitzpatrick’s legal professional and can replace this put up with a response.

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