Carl Douglas “Doug” Walker, former Union Township administrator and trustee, pleaded guilty April 30 to 15 charges related to tampering with records and having unlawful interest in a public contract while he was administrator.
“He’s facing up to 25 years if the judge gives him consecutive maximum sentences for all 15 charges,” Clermont County Prosecutor Donald White said.
White said Walker could be facing fines up to $75,000 along with the jail time.
“We’re also making a demand for restitution of $244,000 for Union Township, all directly related to the counts for which he pled guilty to,” White said.
Walker was indicted Sept. 21, 2011 on 69 charges after the Clermont County Prosecutor’s Office investigated his time as a public official.
Initially, Walker was indicted in March of 2011 for approving payments to his son’s engineering firm, Professional Engineering Group, while he was a trustee.
White said the case was under investigation by the FBI and the Ohio Ethics Commission, and once the FBI completed their investigation, the Ohio Ethics Commission turned the case over to the prosecutor’s office.
“We were waiting for the FBI to complete their investigation,” he said.
White, along with assistant prosecutor Woody Breyer and Union Township Detective Sergeant Scott Blankenship, went though mountains of documents after the initial charges were made before indicting Walker Sept. 21.
“We took time in our investigation,” White said after Walker was indicted. “We had to connect all the purchase orders, payments that were made to the purchase orders and checks. That’s when we discovered the tampering charges.”
After the investigation, Walker was indicted on 69 new counts, including 38 counts of unlawful interest in public contract, 15 counts of tampering with records, 15 counts of tampering with evidence and one count of theft in office.
“He basically gave the township no choice on what they were going to use for their engineering services,” White said.
White said Walker would only ask for proposals from his son’s company to complete work for the township, instead of going through the normal bidding procedures.
White said in some instances the work had already been done before the proposals were sent to trustees and they had to back-date the orders.
In addition, White said they found a significant amount of work completed by his son’s company and paid for by the township, that could have been done by the service department or other individuals already employed by the township.
“There were several instances they were paid for something that wasn’t necessary,” White said about the company.
White said Walker pleaded guilty to 15 charges relating to tampering with evidence and having unlawful interest in a public contract. He said the other charges were dismissed as part of the plea agreement.
“Many of the charges that were dismissed were charges that would merge with other charges,” White said. “He could have faced more than 25 years had he been found guilty, but the likelihood the judge would have given him more just doesn’t exist.”
Walker is scheduled for sentencing at 1:30 p.m. July 16 in front of Judge James Brogan.