Former Pontiac Schools Assistant Superintendent Jumanne Sledge, 40, of Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, was charged in an indictment today with taking $236,000 in district funds and with money laundering, United States Attorney Barbara L. McQuade announced today.
Joining McQuade in the announcement was FBI Special Agent in Charge Andrew G. Arena.
The indictment charges that in 2010, Sledge committed program fraud upon the district, which annually receives more than $10,000 in federal funding, by directing a district employee to write Sledge a vendor check in the amount of $236,000 payable to “Leadership Academy,” which Sledge deposited into an account which he controlled. Approximately two months later, Sledge opened another account, where he deposited $200,000 of the funds, which he then used to pay personal expenses.
If convicted, Sledge faces a maximum of 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000 on the program fraud count and up to 20 years and a fine of up to $250,000.00 on the money laundering count. The indictment also seeks forfeiture of more than $236,000.
“Corruption in any form is a serious crime, but when a defendant steals from a school district, he robs children of funds intended for their education and their future,” McQuade said.
FBI Special Agent in Charge Andrew Arena said, “This type of public corruption not only violates the trust of the community but also robs children of opportunity. The FBI is committed to stopping those who steal from our youth.”
The case was investigated by agents of the FBI and is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney J. Michael Buckley.
An indictment is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt. It will be the government’s burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.