BEAUMONT - by Haley Bull
While the Beaumont Independent School District tries to put behind it a past that includes employees embezzling and stealing money, what BISD may want to forget was front and center Thursday when three defendants all pled guilty to one of four counts in a federal indictment.
The indictment details how a former BISD employee, his wife and his friend took tax payer money.
Prosecutors said Daryl Johnson, the former BISD warehouse supervisor, put his wife, Erin Johnson, and friend, Kailyn Pete, on the district payroll as temporary employees, and he falsified their time sheets.
According to the indictment, Erin Johnson received nearly $194,000 from the BISD payroll and Pete more than $90,000. Each received two checks a month for what they claimed were regular hours and overtime, a total of nearly $284,000 in district funds for hours prosecutors said they never worked.
In federal court, Daryl Johnson plead guilty to conspiracy. He faces up to five years in federal prison, up to a $250,000 fine and restitution.
Erin Johnson and Pete both plead guilty to fraud charges. Each faces the same maximum prison time and fine, though a plea agreement could allow Erin Johnson and Pete to receive 5 years probation.
The final decision on whether to accept the terms and whether to send the trio to prison is left to a federal judge.