Clinton investigation expands into allegations of wrongdoing
CLINTON- Subpoenas were sent to the Town of Clinton Friday indicating the investigation into allegations of wrongdoing is expanding.
The subpoenas request documents tied to Mayor's Court. The East Feliciana Sheriff's Office and Louisiana State Police want: a record of fees collected, a breakdown and explanation of court costs imposed, a record of any fines collected by the Town of Clinton and copies of the rules.
Documents filed in court state, "According to information received by Investigators, the Town Mayor has allowed the Chief of Police to preside over Mayor's Court and to act as the committing magistrate; has allowed the Chief of Police to serve as prosecutor; the Mayor's Court has assessed court costs in excess of those allowed by law and the Mayor's Court has improperly collected "officer fees" in cases where there was no officer eligible to be compensated for a court appearance.
"The investigation is expanding into other areas, but I want to be careful to say, we are not making any accusations yet," Chief Greg Phares with the East Feliciana Sheriff's Office said. "...Simply gather information to see if a crime was committed."
This month, Mayor Lori Ann Bell and Former Police Chief Fred Dunn were arrested. They are accused of malfeasance in office tied to the lease of four Chevy Tahoes. They signed off on the lease paying a sum of $200,000 for four vehicles.
As the investigation now focuses on Mayor's Court, there is also an inquiry underway into how narcotics money was spent by Dunn.
Documents requested in the subpoena tied to Mayor's court must be turned over within ten days.
Attempts to reach Bell and Dunn were unsuccessful.