The City of Shelton wants to know where Sharon Scanlon’s money is — and whether she’s been shifting it around since allegations surfaced last year that she stole hundreds of thousands of dollars from taxpayers.
The city has a civil lawsuit pending against Scanlon. It was filed in September, weeks after Scanlon, formerly the city’s assistant finance director, resigned under a threat of termination by Mayor Mark Lauretti, while a criminal investigation into the alleged theft was underway.
On Feb. 25, Ramon Sous, Shelton’s assistant corporation counsel, filed a motion in the civil case at Superior Court in Milford asking a judge to order Scanlon to disclose, under oath, property she owns or has an interest in, and any debts due her.
The filing also asks for a list of any transfers of assets Scanlon has made since July 1, a month after the date two clerks in the city’s finance department became curious about a check they saw on Scanlon’s desk — a curiosity that laid the foundation for state police to eventually bring criminal charges against Scanlon.
In his motion, Sous asks a judge to order Scanlon to provide a list of:
- The location of any bank accounts or certificates of deposit she holds either in her name or jointly
- The location of any bank accounts of certificates of deposit “which are in the name of a party other than the defendant but in which the defendant has an interest or claims an interest”
- Persons or entities who are indebted to her
- All real estate she owns or partially owns
- All retirement assets, stocks, bonds, or other securities, including any held by other persons in which she has an interest
- All motor vehicles she owns
- Any transfers of assets she made since July 1, 2012
A message was left with Scanlon’s lawyer, William F. Dow III, Wednesday afternoon.
Sous said Wednesday he filed the motion “to do what I think is necessary to protect the taxpayers.”
Asked if the filing was standard procedure, he said: “Nothing’s standard in this. People don’t have this happening all the time.”
Perhaps not, but the Valley has seen its share of scandals related to alleged misdeeds by public officials.
The most serious of those — until the allegations against Scanlon came to light — involved former Oxford Tax Collector Karen Guillet, who pleaded guilty last year to stealing $243,902 from taxpayers.
When Guillet was sentenced in that case last November, a judge ordered her to pay $243,902 in restitution, but town officials have always said the amount she actually stole is far greater — in their own still-pending lawsuit against Guillet, they used the number $671,768.
An ad hoc committee charged with recouping that money is still trying to figure out how to do so, and met in January to discuss “deposition strategy” in the civil case, with a view to determining where all the money went.
Regarding Shelton’s lawsuit against Scanlon, Sous on Wednesday wouldn’t get into specifics about whether the city has any inkling of where the money Scanlon allegedly took ended up.
“These are just questions I thought of to ask, that’s all,” he said.
A judge has not yet ruled on the motion. Sous said no arguments in the matter have been scheduled.
“It’ll come up on the docket, when it comes up on the docket we’ll go from there,” he said.
A judge has already put a $348,416 lien on Scanlon’s Crescent Drive House, a dollar amount that reflected how much city officials believe Scanlon had stolen at the time the lawsuit was filed.
A criminal investigation by the Connecticut State Police Central District Major Crime Squad eventually saw Scanlon charged Jan. 23 with first-degree larceny and 56 counts of first-degree forgery.
An affidavit filed by state police in the case alleges Scanlon “wrongfully appropriated approximately $914,153.50 from bank accounts belonging to the City of Shelton beginning in the year 2001 and continuing through July 2012.”
She made her first appearance in the criminal case Feb. 4 at Superior Court in Derby, where the matter was transferred to Milford Superior Court, where more serious cases are heard.
Scanlon’s next appearance in the criminal case is scheduled for March 12 in Milford. She posted $100,000 bond after her arrest in the case Jan. 23.