Tina Shumate released from prison (Updated)

Slabbed has learned that Tima Shumate, former head of the Mississippi DMR CIAP program, has been released from MDOC custody. Stay tuned to this developing story.

Update:

I’d like to take the opportunity to dispel two rumors as Eye Spy took the opportunity to help me out with some links and background plus I spoke with a couple of other folks that will remain nameless.

1. There is no truth to the speculation that Ms. Shumate’s release is in any way related to the Livingston Parish CIAP Investigation.

2. Ms. Shumate’s release was not politically motivated. Our state prisons are stuffed full of nonviolent offenders. In 2013 a law was passed that reduced the amount of time nonviolent offenders had to serve to 25% of the total sentence so that we could house more violent offenders. Shumate, based on when she took her plea, fell under the new law. If someone deserves the blame for this state of affairs it would be her lawyer Tim Holleman, who would be on the short list of people I’d go see if I got into serious criminal trouble. The bottom line is Ms. Shumate is being treated no differently than others similarly situated.

From the DMR beat: Rumor sweeping the coast Tina Shumate out of jail after serving just 41 days (Updated)

The MDOC Inmate Locator still shows Ms. Shumate at the correctional facility in Leakesville.  I will shake the tree to see what I can find out.

Update:

The Sun Herald is reporting Shumate is at the MDOC facility in Rankin County, having been transferred from the Harrison County Jail last Friday.

Exactly one thought on the Shumate state guilty plea

I’ll term these thoughts 1 and 1a in response to Eye Spy:

It is unusual for someone entering a guilty plea to immediately go into custody of MDOC let alone do it voluntarily yet that is exactly what Tina Shumate did last bad news Friday. With no activity on PACER and a looming late September trial date before Judge Keith Starrett this can only mean that when Ms. Shumate makes an appearance before the court she’ll be wearing prison orange and likely, shackles. Thought 1a from the old days and Dr. Demento: Continue reading “Exactly one thought on the Shumate state guilty plea”

DMR Memorandum lend color to insider purchase of parent’s land with Coastal Impact Funds

This is the defense side of things per Anita Lee’s DMR employee’s South Mississippi home searched circa January 2013.

The DMR paid $245,000 for the lot on a bayou near the Pascagoula River.

Holleman said Shumate removed herself completely from the land transaction. He said her parents, Curt and Ann Hebert, saw the program advertised and approached the DMR about buying the property.

“When her parents got involved, she had nothing to do with it,” Holleman said. “There will be documents that support that.”

I have what I believe to be the documents to which Tim Holleman referred. Continue reading “DMR Memorandum lend color to insider purchase of parent’s land with Coastal Impact Funds”

DMR Timesheets raise troubling questions regarding contract worker payment and supervision (Updated)

Slabbed has obtained timesheets related to contract work performed by Samantha Hebert at the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources.  Before I show you folks what I have we need to back up in time, first to December of 2012 when the DMR Scandal was still young when Anita Lee and Karen Nelson detailed the DMR friends and family program for the Sun Herald:

Relatives of DMR employees also work at the agency, although DMR directors say the hirings comply with the agency’s nepotism policy. The nepotism policy prohibits employees from participating in the hiring process for, or supervising, immediate family members, which includes in-laws. It does not prohibit family members from working at DMR.

Walker said his daughter-in-law was hired by DMR Public Relations Director Lauren Thompson and works as a special projects officer. Trinity Walker, wife of Scott Walker, is paid $27,700 a year, according to state records.

Walker said Thompson also hired Samantha Hebert, the sister of Tina Shumate, DMR’s director of coastal management. Hebert works under contract as a videographer, and has been paid $91,300 since October 2010, state records show. Hebert could not be reached at DMR to comment on her job.

When asked how to reach her sister, Shumate said, “She works for Dr. Walker, so you’d have to talk to him.”

Shumate, recently scrutinized in a federal audit for using grant money for DMR’s purchase of her parents’ Pascagoula property, also has a son and brother-in-law who were contract workers. Shumate said she was not involved in hiring her son, who participated in a summer work program while in high school. She said Walker hired her brother-in-law, who was employed only a short time.

The excerpt is very important for a number of reasons but before I get into that we need to fast forward to this past May when Susan Perkins, Leslie Gollott and Grant Larsen copped pleas to state charges related to their tenure of employment at DMR. To the extent Anita’s story that was linked in my post on the topic is now 404, I use the AP wire version that was run in the Washington Times: Continue reading “DMR Timesheets raise troubling questions regarding contract worker payment and supervision (Updated)”