Eight class action complaints have been filed in a civil suit against suspended officials at Timpanogos Community Mental Health Center in the Fourth District Court.
Former executive director Glen R. Brown, youth program director Carl V. Smith, and finance director Craig W. Stephens were charged with the causes of action in the civil proceeding filed by the Timp Mental Health Authority Board.Brown, Smith and Stephens resigned last month following allegations that they and five other center administrators mismanaged and misused more than $3.5 million in public funds.
The action also includes complaints against "John Does 1 through 50" so as not to exclude anyone that may come under the complaint. Those names will be inserted in the complaint as they become known to the authority board through ongoing investigations and audits, said Utah County commissioner Brent Morris.
The complaint includes action taken against Brown, who leased several of his properties back to the center. Morris said Brown leased his property to Timp Mental Health at an amount double and almost triple the going rate on the market.
The suit was filed by the authority board to hold individuals accountable for the monies they supervised, Morris said.
"We want to get going on it so that we can hopefully restore public trust that has been lost and heal some wounds caused by the Timp scandal."
The suit alleges that Brown, Smith and Stephens acted together, by agreement and in conspiracy to defraud the center.
The first cause of action was filed against the three administrators for contracts they acquired through misrepresentations of facts and deception.
The authority does not know the exact figure paid to the three administrators through center contracts, but believes it is more than $2 million.
The second cause of action deals with car allowance fraud. The authority says in excess of $100,000 was paid to administrators. The third cause alleges fraudulent expense accounts and credit cards. More than $300,000 is believed to have been used to pay for these accounts.
A cause was filed against the "John Does" yet to be named for mismanagement and misappropriation of funds. Additional causes were filed for various management schemes. The filing demand that administrators pay back all funds that were misused.
In the legislative auditors report
released last month, the Timp Mental Health Authority Board, consisting of an appointed commissioner from Utah, Wasatch and Summit counties, was said to have been partly responsible for not catching the problems that went on at the center.
The board manages and supervises the center's administration and sets policies and expenditures but did not conduct a thorough review of the center's management practices, the report said. Instead, it placed trust in the center's management and in the past independent audits.