Former Springboro Schools superintendent indicted on theft, ethics-related charges
SPRINGBORO, Ohio (WXIX) - Warren County Prosecutor David Fornshell announced a grand jury indicted a former Springboro Schools superintendent on various theft and ethics-related offenses.
Fornshell said the offenses occurred during Daniel Schroer’s time as superintendent of the school district.
Schroer pleaded not guilty at a hearing on Friday, Aug. 20 and was released on his own recognizance.
According to Fornshell, in the fall of 2019, the independent public accounting firm for Springboro Community City Schools notified the Ohio Auditor of State of inconsistencies relating to Schroer’s use of sick leave, vacation days, and mileage reimbursements.
In Oct. 2019, the state auditor opened a preliminary investigation and determined that on 16 separate occasions, Schroer falsified school records to obtain reimbursement for travel not taken for school purposes.
Fornshell said investigators obtained cell phone tower data, credit card and ATM records, and other evidence that showed Schroer falsified reimbursement logs and obtained $1,291.66 from the district for travel that either “did not occur at all, or did not occur for school purposes.”
“We were able to take cell phone records and look at cell phone tower locations of where his cell phone was hitting and determined that on the dates that he was saying that was traveling to different locations on school business he wasn’t traveling at all,” explained Fornshell. “He was actually at or near his residence.”
During the course of its investigation, the state auditor’s office also discovered other financial irregularities involving Schroer which was then referred to the Ohio Ethics Commission.
According to Ohio Ethics Commission investigators, while superintendent of the district, Schroer solicited and received personal loans totaling $4,500 from three employees of the district who were Schroer’s subordinates
Fornshell said Schroer also solicited and received personal loans totaling $3,500 from the principals of Helping Others Prepare for Excellence (HOPE), Strategos Group, and CF Educational Solutions, three vendors who were doing or seeking to do business with the district.
In 2017, Strategos Group received $21,000 from the district for consulting services. During the 2018-19 school year, HOPE received $5,300. From Feb. 2018 through June 2019, CF Educational Solutions received $34,485 from the district “for services rendered,” according to Fornshell.
Fornshell said shortly after, Schroer went to work directly for CF Educational Solutions as its Senior Vice President – Leadership.
Investigators also found that Schroer solicited and received $6,800 in cash from Dave Stuckey and Charles Anderson, who were were and continue to be, members of the district’s board of education, according to Fornshell.
“As superintendent of the District, Schroer is required to file an annual financial disclosure form with the Ohio Ethics Commission and disclose, among other things, any loans in excess of $1,000 that he received during the reporting years. The purpose of the financial disclosure filing is to alert the public of any potential conflicts of interest that a public official may have that could affect the administration of their position. In his 2017 and 2018 financial disclosure filing, Schroer did not disclose any of the aforementioned loans/potential conflicts of interest,” Fornshell said.
The grand jury indicted Schroer on five counts of tampering with records, one count of theft in office, two counts of filing a false disclosure statement and six counts of representation by a public employee or official.
“Aside from the numerous conflicts of interest that Mr. Schroer chose not to disclose, it’s just an extraordinarily sad day when someone that is responsible for educating students in our community is accused of stealing funds intended for those same students,” Fornshell said.
The district released the following statement:
“Today, the Warren County Prosecutor’s Office issued an indictment of fifteen (15) counts on former Superintendent Dan Schroer. Mr. Schroer is no longer employed by Springboro Schools, as the Board accepted his resignation on August 30, 2019, following an internal investigation, in order to avoid the cost of litigation. The District has and will continue to cooperate in full with David Fornshell, and the Warren County Prosecutor’s Office, as necessary and required in order to protect the financial interests of the district and its community members.”
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