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INVESTIGATIVE UNIT: Ghost employee billed for overtime, paid despite not signing some timesheets

3 years 9 months 3 weeks ago Friday, July 31 2020 Jul 31, 2020 July 31, 2020 5:53 PM July 31, 2020 in News
Source: WBRZ

NEW ROADS - More problems are coming to light after the WBRZ Investigative Unit obtained additional public records Friday for a ghost employee who was paid a full salary, benefits and given a taxpayer-issued unit with no proof of doing any work.

Outgoing Sheriff Bud Torres has not returned calls to answer our questions about Randy Guidroz.

Guidroz was employed by the Pointe Coupee Parish Sheriff's Office from 2008 until he left this year. When he was first hired he was making around $29,000, and when he left he was earning $42,000. Guidroz was issued a 2019 Dodge Ram Truck with 10 miles on it, but when it was turned in last month, it had 110,000 miles on it. Fuel receipts show Guidroz was fueling up nearly every other day outside of Pointe Coupee Parish. It's unclear what he was doing.

Friday, time sheets obtained by the Investigative Unit show numerous inconsistencies. Nearly a dozen pay periods Randy Guidroz didn't even sign his timesheets, but Sheriff Bud Torres did and Guidroz was paid.

From 2008 until 2013, Steven Juge signed Guidroz's timesheets. Juge told WBRZ Friday, he stopped signing them in 2013 when he was moved to the jail. From 2013, until 2020 Torres signed them.

Chief Deputy Brad Joffrion said this case has been turned over to state investigators.

"Y'all put in a public records request and we pulled the timesheets of the individual in question, and I did see some issues that are concerning," Joffrion said. "So, it's been turned over to the proper authorities. They will take the investigation from this point on."

NAKAMOTO: You've been in law enforcement for a long time, is this payroll fraud?

JOFFRION: It comes very close.

NAKAMOTO: Is it possibly malfeasance in office too?

JOFFRION: Possibly.

On one of the timesheets, Guidroz billed 56 hours of overtime for allegedly patrolling a levee.

Joffrion said the new administration inherited this mess when they took over.

"I hate that we have to be here and we shouldn't be here," Joffrion said. "We inherited this. Sheriff Thibodeaux wants to run a transparent administration and we want to be good stewards of the taxpayer money as I've said before. This needs to be aired out."

One payroll record indicates that Guidroz was an intelligence officer, but no one who has been with the sheriff's office for decades has been able to verify that he worked any cases.

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