The longtime representative of the 34th District Constance "Connie" Howard is expected to plead guilty to mail fraud.
Howard is expected to admit skimming roughly $28,000 out of about $76,700 raised between 2003 and 2007 from the Tee Off For Technology charity golf outing, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Springfield.Hat-tip Capitol Fax!
The money that she took went for her “personal and political use, including expenses associated with the promotion of her campaign,” and also was used to provide financial help to an unnamed “legislative aide” who worked for her.
The golf event was designed to raise scholarship funds for needy students pursuing college degrees in computer science and related fields. But of the nearly $77,000 raised, Howard is expected to admit awarding only five $2,500 scholarships.
A court document alleging the fraud was filed July 17. The U.S. Attorney’s office released a statement Wednesday morning that Howard was expected to appear before U.S. Magistrate Judge Byron G. Cudmore at 1:30 p.m. and plead guilty.
Howard, 70, was first seated in the House in 1995. She abruptly resigned in July 2012, citing “personal reasons,” after federal investigators subpoenaed records from two state agencies about a state-funded AIDS awareness group she founded called the Let’s Talk, Let’s Test Foundation.