Audit reveals $800k in funds misused by Office of State Fire Marshal

State News

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BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) — An audit of the Office of the State Fire Marshal has revealed over $800,000 in funds were misused, according to the Louisiana Legislative Auditor’s office.

According to investigative auditors, they discovered that Lt. Robert McCormick, former emergency management officers for the Office of the State Fire Marshal, used his position to improperly direct state funds totaling $846,140 to companies doing business with or on behalf of his brother, Thomas McCormick.

This fraudulent activity allegedly took place between August 30, 2020, and April 29, 2021.

State auditors said the payments were for supplies, equipment rentals, catering services, and other emergency services provided during natural disasters. Additionally, auditors found that some items were allegedly purchased using Thomas McCormick’s and Lt. McCormick’s personal funds and billed to OSFM at excessive rates.

Auditors said that the companies diverted funds totaling $397,546 to Thomas McCormick’s law firm, McCormick Law Firm, LLC, as “Legal Fees,” “Legal Services,” or “Attorney Fees” and the funds then were allegedly distributed to personally benefit and/or reimburse Lt. McCormick, Thomas McCormick, and others.

To read the full report, click here.

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