Ex-city worker’s case set for trial
Accused of stealing money from holiday celebration fund
WARREN — A former city worker accused of stealing money from a downtown Warren Christmas celebration fund is scheduled to go to trial Jan. 4, 2021, in Trumbull County Common Pleas Court.
Kisha T. Jackson, 44, 2951 Mellgren Drive SW, appeared for a pre-trial hearing Monday before Judge Peter J. Kontos, who set the trial date — saying he wants to get this case moving on the court docket.
Jackson’s attorney, David Engler, said he is trying to get an audio tape from Jackson’s June 25 hearing in Warren Municipal Court when Judge Thomas Gysegem ordered the case bound over to the grand jury. She was indicted on Aug. 12 by a county grand jury on the two fourth-degree theft-in-office felonies. If found guilty, she could face as many as three years in prison.
Engler said this case had “jurisdictional issues” but did not get into specifics when the judge said he wanted to get this case moving.
Jackson, meanwhile, remains free on a bond. She must regularly report to the county’s adult probation department. The next pre-trial is set for Nov. 9 in Kontos’ court.
Jackson was fired by Safety Service Director Eddie Colbert March 3 as the city’s events coordinator and purchasing coordinator. She is accused of not turning over $2,740 from cash donations she collected for the Christmas on the Square Committee during 2019.
Colbert said he conducted an investigation in which he concluded that Jackson failed to turn over cash payments.
Trumbull Neighborhood Partnership is the victim in the case, as TNP was set up as fiscal agent because the city’s Christmas in the Square group is not a federal 503-C nonprofit organization. The Christmas in the Square group is not to be confused with the all-volunteer Light Up the Square event.
Engler pointed out that Jackson tried to submit $2,463 in cash to TNP Director Matt Martin the day after she was fired, but Martin refused to take it. A check for that amount later was accepted by TNP on March 9, Engler said.
Colbert told the court he fired Jackson because she was guilty of dishonesty and theft, two acts that call for immediate dismissal under the city’s union contract.
Engler said his client’s appeal of her firing is ongoing.