ALBANY, GA (WALB) - Update:
Dougherty County school police have filed criminal charges against two custodians accused of stealing equipment from a closed school.
Custodian coordinator Barbara McClenton, who's been fired, and Marilyn Bush-Milledge are charged with theft by taking. Police say they took items such as leap frog tablets, tables and chairs from Sylvester Road Elementary.
Some of the stolen property was found at Bella's Learning Center in Leesburg, which is owned by Milledge's daughter.
"The investigation revealed the items were transported to the daycare in Lee County. At some point in time we believe that there was an exchange of funds," said Chief Troy Conley with the Dougherty County School System.
The owner of the daycare, Tokela Houston, says her mother was told the property was going to be thrown out. Houston says she took tables and chairs 2 years ago, but recently gave the system $1,500 dollars when police began investigating.
Administrators disciplined Milledge and three others.
Two Dougherty County school custodians are facing charges, accused of taking equipment from a closed school. The incident raises some concerns for school officials about the way that property is handled.
Five custodians in the Dougherty County School System are reprimanded for taking equipment from Sylvester Road Elementary School, which has been closed for nearly two years.
"We expect people to do things right and be honest. And if you don't, you pay the price," said Dr. David Mosely, the DCSS Superintendent.
Authorities say old equipment was taken including leapfrog tablets, tables and chairs. School Police began investigating after Albany Police found school property while executing a search warrant at Marvin Russ' house.
"In talking with Mr. Russ, there were other names that surfaced and one thing led to another and that's how we were able to uncover the situation and the thefts that occurred," said Chief Troy Conley, with the Dougherty County School Police.
Marvin Russ, Latonya Davis, Essie Sindy and Marilyn Bush-Milledge were disciplined by administration. Barbara McClenton, the system-wide coordinator of custodians, was terminated.
"Ms. McClenton and Ms. Milledge at one time were supervisors over these group of custodians. And they were somewhat, as we refer to it as the masterminds of the theft," said Conley.
School authorities plan to take warrants out on those two for theft by taking charges.
The incident also raises new concerns for school officials, who say this property is supposed to be properly disposed of. "There are rules and regulations because this has been bought with tax money at some level in there. And then when it is disposed of it should be declared surplus property by the local board of education and sold," said Jack Willis, the Administrative Assistant to the School Superintendent.
Money which is supposed to go back into the school system.
School Police say some of the property was sold to a Lee County day care. They didn't have a dollar figure of how much was stolen because the equipment was very old.