Washington Co. Jail Administrator quits following spending allegations

6:36 PM, Jan 22, 2013   |    comments
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MACHIAS, Maine (NEWS CENTER) --- After a tense hearing last week where he was accused of misusing funds, the longtime administrator of the Washington County Jail has decided to resign.

Robert Gross had been administrator of the jail since 1995. An investigation by Washington County Sheriff Donnie Smith concluded that Gross misused funds in the jail's inmate account for the benefit of himself and the jail's clerk Karina Richardson.

The inmate account is made up of funds from sales at the jail's commissary. All money in it is supposed to go to benefit inmates according to the Maine Department of Corrections.

A lawyer's report concluded that Gross and Richardson instead used the money to buy new cell phones, dinners and even clothes like women's lingerie. Last week the county's board of commissioners decided to fire Richardson. Gross was facing the possibility of termination as well but instead turned in his notice last Friday.

Attorneys for both workers argued that the jail's inmate account was misued by other people at the sheriff's department including Donnie Smith. The attorney general's office has been asked to conduct its own investigation into the matter.


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