Baltimore Mayor Sheila Dixon Convicted of Fraudulent Misappropriation

Baltimore Mayor Sheila Dixon has been convicted of a single count of fraudulent misappropriation by a fiduciary. It was one of the original 12 counts of corruption in an indictment (later reduced at trial, including four counts of perjury, two counts of misconduct, three counts of theft and three counts of fraudulent misappropriations. The allegations stemmed from the use of gift cards from two real estate developers — who gave the cards to help needy families and instead discovered that they were being used allegedly by Dixon to buy things like a PlayStation2, CDs and DVDs.

Many of the gift cards came from developer Ron Lipscomb as well as purchased with cash by the city. The indictment alleges that on Dec. 16, 2004, 15 $50 Best Buy gift cards were purchased with cash by the city. Two were used on Dec. 11, 2005, at the Best Buy store downtown by Dixon to purchase $237 worth of merchandise, including a PlayStation2, CDs and DVDs.

Notably, Dixon was discovered because she paid the difference for these items with her own credit card. She is accused of using the gifts at Old Navy, Circuit City, Toys “R” Us and a Giant food store for items ranging from an Xbox to a Sony PlayStation to a digital camcorder to an iPod and clothes.

When police raided her home, they reportedly found at least five Toys “R” Us gift cards that were donated to the city for needy families. That will make for a bit of a problem in front of a jury.

She was also accused of accepting gifts from Lipscomb without disclosing them including a $2,000 gift certificate at a local fur store, thousands of dollars in travel and lodging expenses in New York and Chicago and several thousand dollars for a shopping spree in Chicago at such stores as Saks Fifth Avenue, Giorgio and Coach. Lipscomb was trying to get tax credits from the city. Both he and Councilwoman Helen Holton were indicted Wednesday on charges of bribery last week.

For a previous story, click here.

The jury convicted Mayor Sheila Dixon on one count of fraudulent misappropriation by a fiduciary.

The jury acquitted Dixon of the felony theft charges.

The jury couldn’t reach an unanimous decision on count six (another count of fraudulent misappropriation by a fiduciary) and the judge declared a mistrial on that count.

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18 thoughts on “Baltimore Mayor Sheila Dixon Convicted of Fraudulent Misappropriation”

  1. Casablanca and the Maltese Falcon are two of my favorite movies, each watched innumerable times. The effect of Bogie on my just forming pre-teen mind was to show me how I thought a man should act. Unfortunately,
    few of us are Rick, or Sam Spade and the Bogart effect hasn’t always been the best influence. I cry every time is see the scene where Rick’s patrons sing “La Marseillaise.”

  2. mespo,

    I recently caught Casablanca on AMC one insomniac night. No body could tell you to go to Hell and make you like it quite like Bogie. That film has some amazing dialog, especially considering that while shooting they had literally no idea where the film was going and were getting new pages of script almost every day of shooting.

  3. BIL:

    “There is that whole Churchill saying about establishing price.

    I’m with Mike. That was a cheap sellout.”

    **************

    I am full of movie references today. Here’s Bogey commenting to Peter Lorre about “parasites.” (Around 1:26)

  4. “The sad thing about this Mayor is how cheaply she sold herself.”

    She probably sold herself many more times. This was just the one time that she got caught.

  5. There is that whole Churchill saying about establishing price.

    I’m with Mike. That was a cheap sellout.

  6. Greed is greed is greed.If it wasn’t so sad I would be ROFLMAO,but all I can say is WOW!!

    So this tells me you would have to watch the crystal in your house if the mayor is present.

  7. We know what Mayor Dixon is, the only question (now answered)was her price. Flipkid, re: your shock at no jury nullification black people are no doubt embarrassed by her. The black community in America is basically a very moral one, despite the fact that they’ve been portrayed in a different way by media and myth. As for the well-known OJ example, let me say that I watched his entire trial and if I was on the jury I would have voted to acquit. He may have been guilty, but you do have to prove your case beyond a reasonable doubt, which it wasn’t.

    Back to Baltimore though, I’ve been there on more than a few occasions and I liked the City. It is no doubt corrupt, but really no more so than any other large American City. This is one of our country’s dirtiest little secrets: Corruption is rife and worst at the local levels. Cheaper to access and to buy politicians locally. The sad thing about this Mayor is how cheaply she sold herself.

  8. Ahhhh . . . the smell of corruption in the morning! Smells just like politicians! But what’s that other smell? Hmmmmmmmmm. Smells like justice. Sweet tasty justice.

    Good show, Baltimore.

  9. Mespo:

    he kind of looks like Marcus Tullius, just shave the top of his head and shorten the remaining hair.

  10. “I am not amazed. This is Baltimore after all.”

    Oooh… harsh. What did we ever do to you, AY?

  11. doesn’t matter the party they are all corrupt and need to be thrown out of office on a regular basis lest they forget whom they serve. A periodic turnover of all levels of government, elected or appointed, will give them the message that we run the show.

    Additionally middle and upper level bureaucrats should be changed up from time to time so that no one political philosophy holds sway over a particular department. Better yet lets just get rid of all of those departments, it would save a bunch of money and they probably would not be missed.

  12. They were gift cards, yes. SO you mean they weren’t meant for her? Good show Baltimore, Maryland.

  13. As a life-long Baltimore resident, I can’t tell you how (satisfyingly) shocking this verdict was (even if it was “only” one count out of many). Many local pundits were convinced that this would be a classic case of jury nullification. A (popular) black, female Mayor being tried in front of a predominantly black, female jury. A jury that would ignore the (rather overwhelming) evidence and acquit anyway.

    We started suspecting that something was up when the jury actually deliberated for more days than the trial testimony took!

    ALL local politicians (black, white, male, female, Democrat, Republican) have gotten a free ride here in B’more for decades when it comes to, er, “suspicious” activity. I guess that streak ends here.

    What made these charges so especially heinous is that it was reverse Robin Hood; the Mayor was taking gift cards meant for the poor and using them to buy extravigant items for the rich… herself.

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