After an investigation of more than 18 months, charges have been filed charges against two former Tewksbury Parks and Recreation Department employees in connection with an embezzlement scandal that shut down the department and forced the town to restructure how it offered recreation programs.
Former Recreation Department Director Roy Patterson and administrative assistant Lauren Bibo Morris have been summonsed to appear in Lowell District Court to face charges on Sept. 12, according to article appearing in the Lowell Sun.
According to a spokesperson in the office of District Attorney Gerry Leone, Tewksbury Police applied for criminal charges to be filed back in the spring and have been waiting for Clerk of the Courts to put the case on the docket.
Investigators lay most of the responsibility for the scandal on Morris, who handled much of the cash flow in the Parks and Recreation office. She is charged with embezzling $31,457 in 2009 and $20,485 in 2010, according to the report. She faces two counts of larceny is excess of $250.
Patterson is only being charged with one count of larceny under $250. He is also accused of violating the state's conflict of interest laws. The latter is connected to the non-profit booster club that raised money for the Recreation Department.
Tewksbury Town Manager Richard Montuori closed the Parks and Recreation Department in December, 2010. Morris was fired around the same time, while she was on maternity leave. Patterson was placed on administrative leave and then was fired in early 2011.
Recreation programs are now overseen by the school department and the town departments are no longer allowed to accept cash.
Tewksbury Patch will continue to follow this story and will update with additional information as it becomes available.