Skimming HUD money ends with prison term

Published 10:59 am Tuesday, July 29, 2014

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. — A Proctorville woman will spend the next year and a half in prison for skimming money from several government-subsidized apartment bank accounts in West Virginia.

Connie Lynn Whitley, 51, of 19B Township Road 1247, was sentenced Monday in U.S. District Court in Huntington. She previously pleaded guilty to federal embezzlement charges in April, admitting she had stolen more than $150,000 while she was a bookkeeper for her former employer, Uptowner Inn Inc.

In a sentencing memorandum filed by Assistant U.S. Attorney Blaire Malkin, Whitley “was entrusted with thousands of dollars of HUD funds that were to be used for HUD beneficiaries. She abused the trust placed in her by HUD when she misused those funds and abused her discretion to do so.”

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The document also noted Whitley seemed remorseful for the crime.

A three-page federal information filed in U.S. District Court in Huntington said part of Whitley’s duties included managing and administering Housing and Urban Development (HUD) accounts for the Branchland, Cottageville, Fairplain, New Haven and Ona apartment complexes.

From July 2009 to September 2013, Whitley wrote 191 checks to herself from five different HUD accounts and used that money for her own personal use.