Audit shows allegations against Harris Co. Sheriff are false - WLTZ 38 | Columbus Georgia Regional News & Community

Audit shows allegations against Harris Co. Sheriff are false

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By Sara Belsole

HARRIS COUNTY, GA - At a September 18th Harris County Board of Commissioner's meeting, an allegation was made that Harris County Sheriff Mike Jolley misappropriated $2.8 million worth of funds.

"From three different accounts that are handled and controlled through my office to the general funds in the commission's office, telephone funds, commissary funds and one of the drug funds," Sheriff Mike Jolley says.

The Board of Commissioners says it took the allegation very seriously and immediately launched an investigation.

"I met with the Sheriff, the County Attorney, we met with our auditors to see what they have been doing in the past to audit those accounts, and looked at the Sheriff's check books," Commissioner Chairman Harry Lange says.

This letter was sent out by the Board of Commissioners last night and says that all the allegations were incorrect.

"The initial numbers that were reported were approaching $3 million over a 20 year period, those numbers are totally bogus, they really  had no relation to what was actually done," Lange says.

The investigation shows the jail's $11,000 in telephone funds from last year are deposited into the county's general fund.

It says commissary funds, which are used by inmates for limited purchases, go through a third party vendor who gives a net profit to the Sheriff's Office of about $1,000 per month.

And in terms of forfeitures and seizures, those sales may only be used for law enforcement purposes. The Sheriff's Office sells an average seven cars per year at about $2,100.

"I felt bad for my staff because my staff runs most of these check books and accounts so I wanted to be sure that it was looked into and my staff has been vindicated. I have good people working for me," Jolley says.

Officials say this audit was done on top of the annual audit the Sheriff's Office goes through.

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