A former Cleveland Municipal Court administrator has been indicted on felony charges after our investigation uncovered the employee erased the fines on his own traffic ticket.
On Tuesday, a Cuyahoga County grand jury indicted Brian Mahon of Medina on two counts of tampering with records. Mahon, who worked for the Clerk of Courts for 30 years, was a deputy clerk in charge of collections and reviewing parking ticket disputes. His position with the Clerk's Office gave him full access to the court's computer system.
We first caught up with Mahon at the Justice Center last summer, when we went to ask him about his ruling on an improperly issued parking ticket that was eventually overturned. We also asked Mahon about a two year old traffic ticket of his own.
We looked into Mahon's background and found he was ticketed in 2014 for running a stop sign on West 30th Street in Cleveland. When he failed to show up to court, a warrant was issued for his arrest. When I asked Mahon about the case, he told me he didn't remember the ticket or the warrant.
He was later found guilty when the traffic case went to trial. The judge suspended the $75 fine, but ordered Mahon to pay $176 in court costs.
Four months later, Mahon still had not paid the fines, so the city issued a non-payment alert and sent a reminder letter to his Medina home. The following week, Mahon's court costs were mysteriously reduced from $176 to zero.
Prosecutors now say what we suspected: Mahon never paid the $176 court courts, but made it look like he did. It wasn't until we began nosing around years later that the court costs actually got paid.
Records show that four days after our initial story aired in September, Mahon went back into the computer system and paid the $176 in court costs he is charged with wiping out back in 2014.
Mahon was placed on paid administrative leave soon after we started asking questions, and eventually fired by the Clerk of Courts in October. His arraignment is scheduled for March 14.
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