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For Immediate Release

Media Contact:
Shanetta J. Paskel, 410-576-7939

Former UMBC Employee Sentenced to 30 Days for His Role in Thefts from UMBC
Contractor Also Sentenced Today in a UMBC Bribery Case

BALTIMORE, MD (November 24, 2008) - Maryland Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler announced today that a former employee was sentenced in the Circuit Court for Baltimore County to serve 30 days in jail, or in an alternative sentencing program, for the theft of over $5,400.00 from University of Maryland Baltimore County (UMBC). Judge John Grason Turnbull, II, suspended the remainder of a 2-year sentence and ordered the person to undergo supervised probation for 3 years following his incarceration. During probation, this defendant was ordered to pay restitution to UMBC in the amount of $5,432.24.

The employee pled guilty to theft in March 2006, at which time he agreed to cooperate with the State's on-going investigation of corruption within construction projects at UMBC. For his own part, the employee admitted to participating in an April 2003 to August 2003 scheme in which bathroom fixtures were purchased for personal residences, and the costs were improperly passed to UMBC through construction projects. UMBC lost a total of $5,432.24 in the theft scheme.

Sentencing of Contractor Joseph “Don” Cheek

Also on November 20, 2008, former UMBC subcontractor, Joseph "Don" Cheek was sentenced by Judge Turnbull to serve 30 days of a two-year sentence for Bribery of UMBC Construction Manager Andrew Reider, and for his role as an accomplice to Reider, Reider's UMBC supervisor George Alinsod, and other corrupt contractors' representatives in schemes to pass the costs of some bribes along to UMBC by way of an inflated bill and a bill for contracting services not provided. In exchange for the bribes to Reider, Cheek got work at UMBC and shared in golf trips and a $10,000 boat purchased with "slush fund" money. During 3 years of probation, Cheek, 55, of Neepeir Road, Baltimore, must pay restitution of $3,500.00 to UMBC. Other defendants in the UMBC cases will pay the remainder of the restitution owed.

These cases are part of a series of prosecutions handled by the Attorney General's Criminal Division, with assistance by the Maryland State Police, UMBC Police, and University System of Maryland internal auditors.


Attorney General of Maryland 1 (888) 743-0023 toll-free / TDD: (410) 576-6372
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