photo via Case Western Reserve/Facebook
Cleveland resident and former MetroHealth grant specialist Carol Lott is charged with stealing almost $300,000 worth of grant money from Case Western Reserve.
Lott, 53, worked alongside East Cleveland resident Andrea Mittman-Thomas, to manipulate the grant process and funnel the university's money into a shell corporation. The pair is facing dozens of felony charges, including aggravated theft and money laundering.
Case Western pours millions of dollars in grants per year to various organizations for research and other purposes. Therefore, grants under $5,000 are not usually investigated, Assistant Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Jim Gutierrez told cleveland.com
Lott and Mittman-Thomas worked carefully, submitting invoices under $5,000 to the university for a period of three years. By April 2016, their shell company accumulated close to $150,000.
In addition to invoice money, the duo requested gift cards from Case Western Reserve, which grew to about $140,000.
In April 2016, under the watch of a new supervisor, Case Western's grant department noticed the irregular transactions and contacted MetroHealth
Lott and Mittman-Thomas are expected in Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court Aug. 3.