The Office of the Chief State’s Attorney will launch a criminal probe into the Ansonia tax collector’s office, Ansonia Police Chief Kevin Hale announced Thursday afternoon.
This is the full statement distributed by the Police Department on Hale’s behalf:
“After consultation with the State’s Attorney for the Derby-Milford Judicial District and at my request, the Office of the Chief State’s Attorney will conduct a criminal investigation into the matter concerning the Ansonia Tax Collector’s Office. There will be no further comments involving this case from the Ansonia Police Department.”
The move comes after the Valley Indy discovered last month that three residents — all either city employees or city officials — received a Department of Motor Vehicle “tax clearance” document from Ansonia tax collector Bridget Bostic’s office even though they owed back car taxes.
A fourth resident — Bostic’s mother, Marion — also received the clearance, even though she was behind on car taxes.
Bostic’s mother owed about $4,000 on two vehicles dating back to 1997. Yet she was able to register a Toyota Corolla in April with the Department of Motor Vehicles using a document from the tax collector as proof she had paid her back taxes.
James Hooker, an employee with the Ansonia Department of Public Works, owed almost $7,000 on six cars dating back to 2007. Yet he was able to register three cars with the DMV in June 2011, using a stamped notice from Bostic as proof he had paid overdue car taxes.
Last week the city released a 38-page “fact finding” report that looked into the practices of the Ansonia tax collector’s office.
In addition, the report names two additional city employees who allegedly owed car taxes but received a document from Bostic saying they were up-to-date.
Bostic, a union member, has been placed on administrative leave with pay pending a collective bargaining hearing, according to the mayor.