CONTACT: Lisa H. Shoemaker (601) 576-2641 or (601) 613-8518
Laney Grantham (601) 576-2641 or (601) 668-3483
DATE: October 17, 2011
Former Hollandale Principal Indicted for Embezzlement
(Jackson, Miss.) - State Auditor Stacey Pickering announced that Roger Liddell, former principal of Simmons High School in the Hollandale School System in Washington County, has been indicted on the charge of embezzlement. Deputies with the Washington County Sheriff’s Department served Liddell last week and he was released on his own recognizance. On August 24, 2011, the State Auditor issued a demand against Liddell in the amount of $111,581.38. A complaint received in 2009 started the investigation into missing computers, televisions and video equipment. The amount of inventory missing from the Hollandale School District is valued at $73,032.88.
“Roger Liddell has been indicted on the charge that from 1996 through 2009, he allegedly embezzled 5 cameras, 6 camcorders, 10 desktop computers; 7 laptop computers; 8 DVD/CD players; 7 televisions and computer monitors; 9 printers; 4 projects and 3 DVD/CD writers, all valued at $500 or more each and converted that equipment to his own use,” said State Auditor Stacey Pickering. “I appreciate the work of District Attorney Dewayne Richardson for putting this case before the grand jury. Our schools are looking for ways to cut costs and do more with less. I am committed to holding individuals accountable when they steal from our children’s education.”
Washington County Sheriff’s Office served the indictment and processed Liddell without the assistance of the State Auditor’s Office; therefore, it is unclear if Liddell was formally arrested and booked into the Washington County Jail. Special agents for the State Auditor’s Office will continue to work this case with the District Attorney in the criminal court.
Elected as Mississippi’s State Auditor in 2007, Stacey Pickering has recovered more than $4.8 million in embezzled, misspent or misappropriated funds. He is a seventh generation Mississippian from Jones County. Auditor Pickering currently serves on the Domestic Working Group for the Office of the Comptroller General of the United States. He also serves on the Financial Management and Intergovernmental Affairs and Performance Audit Committees for the National Association of State Auditors, Comptrollers and Treasurers and is a member of the National State Auditors Association. Prior to serving as State Auditor, Pickering served as a State Senator from 2004-2007 representing Jones County and is credited for co-authorizing legislation allowing Mississippi to end lawsuit abuse. Throughout his political career, Pickering has made tremendous strides in creating more accountability and transparency in government and continues to promote fiscal responsibility and the need for more efficiency and productivity in government. For more information on Stacey Pickering, visit www.osa.state.ms.us/auditors-bio.htm.