Former Touchdown Booster Club president accused of embezzlement

By Traci Chapman
Staff Writer

A former Mustang booster club president stands accused of embezzling more than $10,000 from accounts meant to fund student activities.

Craig Davis Jr.

Canadian County prosecutors in May filed criminal felony charges against 48-year-old Raymond Craig Davis, Jr., alleging the Oklahoma City man converted more than $10,120 raised by Mustang Touchdown Booster Club for his personal use, going at least as far back as 2016.

Although assistant district attorney Austin Murrey filed charges May 8, officials said the case continues to unfold, as investigators weave through what they called the “convoluted jumble” that was Touchdown Club finances, they said.

According to the probable cause affidavit filed with the court by Canadian County Sheriff’s Deputy Sara Bondurant, the criminal investigation into Davis’ activities began March 1, when she was asked to meet with then Mustang Public School Superintendent Dr. Sean McDaniel and Nancy McKay, district chief financial officer.

“During the meeting McDaniel stated both he and McKay had concerns about the Mustang Touchdown Booster Club financials,” Bondurant stated. “McDaniel stated Davis has been the booster club president for several years.”

McKay became aware of issues with Touchdown Club finances in February, after receiving a report from district auditors listing several issues with the organization’s bank accounts, including 21 cash withdrawals – totaling more than $9,635 – and of which $6,380 was unaccounted for in any way, she stated.

Mustang Schools in 2016 began the process of sanctioning all district booster clubs, which historically operated as independent organizations with no district oversight. As part of that process, MPS staff began the task of annually selecting three clubs for financial audit.

“The sanctioning process has moved them under the district umbrella where the Board of Education can request records and help with the record keeping process,” Deputy Superintendent Charles Bradley said in a statement. “The sanctioning process has given the district a layer of protection that we didn’t have before.”

It was through such an audit, conducted in 2017, CPA Eric Bledsoe discovered what officials called numerous discrepancies and thousands of dollars unaccounted for inTouchdown Club records. Over an 18-month period, Bledsoe said, the organization received $269,129 and spent $269,639 – which caused the account to go into nonsufficient fund status.

“He noted only one person, Davis, appeared to have control over the YNB account,” the deputy stated. “He noted the club’s debit/credit card was used excessively, without proper documentation, as well as cash withdrawals without proper tracking documentation.”

The Yukon National account was just the tip of the iceberg, officials alleged. The club also had a Cornerstone Bank checking account – an account Bledsoe told Bondurant he was not aware of, until after he finished the initial audit. McKay also told investigators Davis did not provide any information concerning the Cornerstone account when she requested all club financial documentation, Bondurant said.

In fact, Bondurant stated she asked Davis three times during the April 6 interview if there was just one bank account, which she said he confirmed. When the investigator questioned the former club official about the second, Cornerstone, account, Davis allegedly told her it was an “old account” recently closed.

Bank records showed Davis closed the Cornerstone account Feb. 13, Bondurant said.

“I asked what Davis did with the 62 cents remaining in the account he closed, and he stated he used it for ‘club business,’ such as taking donors to lunch and purchasing items for the team,” Bondurant stated in the affidavit. “I listed each fast food restaurant and asked which potential donor he took to the restaurant for a meeting, and he could not remember any specific names.”

Bondurant stated Cornerstone fast food charges appeared to be “single person food purchase amount” and at businesses she verified were frequented by Davis through debits from his personal Yukon National account.

“I noticed from Cornerstone Bank statements the last double signature check copy was August 2016; from September 2016 through closure of the account in 2018, Davis’ signature is the only signature that appears, and his issued bank card was the only card used.”

Davis’ actions in connection with the Cornerstone account, opened in July 2014 and for which Davis obtained a debit card in August 2015 was a move frowned upon in nonprofits, which operate under strict guidelines concerning financial and fiduciary operations and duties. Investigators alleged Davis several times not only violated criminal statutes, but also Touchdown Club bylaws.

Bondurant said those regulations mandated any spending more than $500 be endorsed by at least three officers; an individual who did not have check signing authority was required to review and balance bank statements monthly, and at least two people without that authority must audit the group’s finances annually – or hire an outside firm to do so.

“After reviewing all bank records and corporate records provided, I have found that neither the board, nor the banks involved, monitored or mandated the requisite number of signatures required by club bylaws,” Bondurant stated. “The board had not prepared proper financial records…no audits were performed in regard to the club during Davis’ presidency, as required under the bylaws.”

Bondurant stated she also discovered the club had several different federal tax identification numbers, Bondurant said. While Internal Revenue Service guidelines do not mandate criminal penalties for maintaining more than one EIN per entity, the only reason recommended to do so was in the case of a business owner who owns more than one company or trust that requires separate identification for tax purposes.

Court documents alleged the club elected new treasurer Becky Leeper in June 2017, but Davis prohibited her access to financial accounts until September, nor was she aware of any tax returns filed on the nonprofit’s behalf during her tenure.

“Leeper noticed a pattern whereby the club would have outstanding invoices, she would question Davis about funding to pay the invoices, then enough funds would appear in the YNB bank account to cover the outstanding debt,” Bondurant stated. “She stated she asked Davis if there was a second bank account…and Davis said, ‘No.’”

Other volunteers and school officials also allegedly told Bondurant they became suspicious of Davis’ financial dealings in connection with the club. According to Bondurant’s affidavit, Mustang High School football coach Jeremy Dombeck told her he and district athletic director Robert Foreman in January asked for Davis’ resignation, prompted by board members’ belief funds were short.

It was after that resignation Leeper inadvertently discovered the existence of the Cornerstone account, investigators alleged.

Bondurant both obtained Davis’ personal checking records – an account also held at Yukon National Bank – and April 6 interviewed him concerning both embezzlement allegations and missing documentation.

According to Bondurant’s affidavit, when asked why the club did not have accounting, minutes or other documents required of nonprofits, Davis allegedly told her it was because of “poor recordkeeping” – although the former president said he turned over all records in his possession to auditors.

Davis also allegedly told Bondurant a company he used to sanction the club – “parentbooster.com” – not only provided documents for that process, it also filed club tax returns at his request. The deputy said Davis never provided those returns to the deputy, despite her requests for them and his promises to do so.

An online search revealed a company called Parent Booster USA, which stated on its website it provided services including “information, training and help to set up and operate school support organizations,” which entails registering organizations with the IRS as 501(c)(3) nonprofits, obtaining tax identification numbers and complying with state sales tax and fundraising registration requirements. A PBUSA representative who wished to remain anonymous said Monday while the organization aids and documents to its members with tax filings, it does not file those taxes.

The PBUSA website also stated, “Failure to file the IRS 990 for three consecutive year, or filing the 990 late for three consecutive years, will result in revocation of your organization’s tax-exempt status.”

There is a price for PBUSA’s services – from $345 to $495 per year. It was unknown as of press time whether Mustang Touchdown Club ever hired the organization.

According to Oklahoma County District Court and Department of Corrections records, the Oklahoma City man in 1989 pleaded guilty to three felony counts of controlled dangerous substance distribution; that conviction yielded him five years’ probation, which ended September 1996.

District officials continue to investigate Touchdown Club records to ensure no one else was involved in the alleged thefts, the deputy superintendent said.

“It’s not the school district this individual is accused of stealing from, it’s the kids,” Bradley said. “The athletes and the parents gave of their time and talents to raise money earmarked to go back into the program and back to the kids. It’s inconceivable to me that a parent could violate the trust of other parents and then take away resources the athletes themselves worked for.”

Davis posted $2,500 bond May 15. No hearings are yet set in the case.

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