Ex-director of Cleveland Community Police Commission indicted on forgery, theft

Ex-director of Cleveland Community Police Commission indicted on forgery, theft

CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - Prosecutor Michael O'Malley announced Tuesday that a Cuyahoga County Grand Jury has indicted Nicole Junior, the former executive director of the Cleveland Community Police Commission.

Junior, 36, was hired in March 2017 by the city of Cleveland to head the police commission, according to Ryan Miday, a spokesman for the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor's Office.

The commission was formed as part of a consent decree between the city and the U.S. Department of Justice.

Its 13-member panel promotes ongoing community input, makes recommendations for police practices, and provides transparency on police department reform.

As executive director, Junior would have made $95,000 a year and was entitled to up to $10,000 in moving expenses.

After she was hired, Junior emailed a reimbursement claim for moving expenses from New York to Cleveland.

She attached a fraudulent invoice that she created in the name of a New York-based moving company.

In April, she submitted another fraudulent invoice for moving expenses, which included the March balance, totaling $7,256.41.

Although the city of Cleveland processed Junior's request for payment and issued her a check for the full amount, a city employee detected irregularities in Junior's invoices.

An auditor from the city's finance department retrieved the check before it was sent.

Investigators learned the invoices were forged Paypal invoices.

Junior resigned as executive director after being notified about the irregularities with her moving expense claims.

Investigators later learned that Junior had rented a fully-furnished apartment to live in while working in Cleveland.

The moving company, whose name she used on the fraudulent invoices she submitted, belonged to her mother's boyfriend.

The company was registered to the same address where Junior also lived in Brooklyn, New York.

"This individual placed a bet that she was smarter than the City of Cleveland Auditors, and she lost," said Prosecutor O'Malley in a prepared statement. "She now has to return to Cleveland to pay her debt."

The 10-count indictment includes charges of tampering with records, telecommunications fraud, forgery, and attempted theft.

Arraignment has been scheduled for Dec. 7.

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