Released nearly 5 years ahead of schedule, the former Buncombe County manager readies for another legal fight.
According to a factual basis document filed on July 30 with the U.S. District Court for the Western District of North Carolina, Ellen Frost will likely admit to one count of conspiracy to commit federal program fraud, for which the maximum prison term is five years. Frost’s court date is scheduled for Monday, Aug. 17.
Xpress imagines just what former County Manager Wanda Greene and her fellow corrupt ex-Buncombe County officials have been up to since reporting for federal prison last year — featuring Mandy Stone’s recipe for toilet wine!
Speaking at a Dec. 17 meeting of the Buncombe County Board of Commissioners, attorney Ron Payne said that Stanley had been accused in a sworn deposition by former Assistant County Manager Jon Creighton of improperly accepting unspecified “things of value” from former county contractor Joseph Wiseman Jr.
During a Nov. 19 meeting of the Buncombe County Board of Commissioners, attorney Ron Payne said the settlement would bring the suit to an end, “hopefully in somewhat of an expeditious manner.” All six commissioners present were in favor of accepting the settlement, with Vice Chair Jasmine Beach-Ferrara absent for the vote.
Calling former County Manager Wanda Greene’s activities a “tragic waste on a personal level” with “horrific consequences for the county of Buncombe,” U.S. District Judge Robert Conrad sentenced her to 7 years in federal prison and ordered her to pay a $100,000 fine. Co-conspirators Michael Greene, Mandy Stone, Jon Creighton and Joseph Wiseman, Jr., all received active prison time, a year of supervised release and a financial penalty.
Joseph Wiseman, Jr., a former Buncombe County contractor implicated in a kickback scheme that has led to charges against three former county officials, has agreed to plead guilty to conspiracy to commit honest services fraud.
The Buncombe County Board of Commissioners has accepted a $189,000 settlement from former Assistant County Manager Jon Creighton, who pled guilty in October for his part in a kickback scheme involving himself and two other former managers.
Crying about the year’s area government scandals doesn’t do much good — but bursting into song just might!
Even after a full year of developments in the criminal investigation into former County Manager Wanda Greene, Buncombe County has still not reached the end of this tumultuous chapter in its history. Citizens did, however, witness many developments in the case throughout 2018.
Former Buncombe County Manager Mandy Stone has agreed to a plea deal with federal prosecutors for her part in an alleged kickback scheme that has snared three former county officials.
Jon Creighton, former assistant county manager and planning director for Buncombe County, has admitted guilt to one count of conspiracy in a plea deal entered on Oct. 25.
“This is the perfect time to unwind, review, learn and rebuild the structure and environment to epitomize best practices — to create a system that, at its core, honors and promotes an ethical culture and is dedicated to the highest ideals of leadership, integrity, transparency and accountability.”
Interim County Manager George Wood said in a Sept. 11 memo to commissioners that, taking into account increases in automatic employee raises, a projected bump in health insurance claims and the potential for larger funding requests from local school systems, the county could see an approximately $1.7 million deficit in FY 2020.
Even as elected officials and county staff digested word of new indictments of former county employees released less than four hours before the regular meeting of the Buncombe County Board of Commissioners on Aug. 7, efforts to select a new county manager continued to move ahead.
A federal grand jury returned a bill of indictment on Aug. 7, bringing charges against three former Buncombe County officials: former County Manager Wanda Greene, former County Manager Mandy Stone and former Planning Director and Assistant County Manager Jon Creighton.
At the Buncombe County Board of Commissioners’ March 17 retreat, the Planning Department gave two separate presentations, each containing proposed actions to be discussed at future meetings.