FIRST ON 3: Band Booster Faces More Legal Troubles - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

FIRST ON 3: Band Booster Faces More Legal Troubles

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Stacie Poston (WRCB File) Stacie Poston (WRCB File)
Stacie Poston's mug shot from Kansas Stacie Poston's mug shot from Kansas
Updated: Friday May 22, 2009 2 pm

Stacie Poston faces more legal troubles.

The former Hixson High Band Booster accused of stealing student-earned cash is facing more legal trouble.

Stacie Poston was set to appear before a Hamilton County judge this morning, but she never showed up.

Her attorney was present when the Chancery Court Clerk served a lawsuit in court against Poston, and her husband.

David and Stacie Poston are being sued for nearly $40,000 for backing out of a lease to purchase agreement on a Hixson home.

Poston's attorney says the case is not related to the felony theft charges Stacie Poston is facing, and would not comment on why Poston was not in court.

"She doesn't have to be here today," says Donna Miller, "she can enter an appearance through her attorney, so she doesn't have to be here today."

Poston was extradited to Hamilton County last week after being arrested in Kansas.

She was released on a $15,000 bond.

Poston is scheduled to appear in court on August 11th.

Count on Eyewitness News to be there and let you know what happens.

Updated: Wednesday May 13, 2009 1 pm

Stacie Poston out on bond.

CHATTANOOGA (WRCB) - Eyewitness News has learned, contrary to reports received Tuesday, Stacie Poston is out on bond.

Poston was released over the weekend on a $15,000 bond.

Her court date is set for May 22nd.

Updated: Tuesday May 12, 2009 1 pm

Helping the Hixson Band recoup lost funds.

CHATTANOOGA (WRCB) - A Hixson restaurant is helping the Hixson High School Band recover lost money by offering a portion of their earnings.

Every Thursday during the month of May, Sticky Fingers in Hixson will donate 10 percent of their earnings to the band.

For 10 percent of your bill to go to the band you will need a coupon from the band.

Updated: Tuesday May 12, 2009 12:15 pm

Band Booster Extradited to Tennessee. Booster President reacts.

CHATTANOOGA (WRCB) - Hixson High School Band's Booster Club President is reacting tonight to the arrest of a former member - the woman accused of stealing student-earned money.

Former Hixson High School Band Treasurer Stacie Poston was extradited back to Hamilton County over the weekend.

She is accused of stealing at least $12,000 in student-earned money, forcing the band to cancel a trip to Disney World.

Eyewitness News broke the news of Poston's arrest to Booster Club President Warren Baker last week. Baker says his main priority is getting the money back, but hopes Poston will be punished.

"At least something on her record," says Baker, " so the next person can know she's done this, and not just once."

Poston remains in custory at the Silverdale workhouse on a $15,000 bond.

She is expected in court May 22nd.

Count on Eyewitness News to continue to follow this story.

Updated: Friday May 1, 2009 12:15 pm

Band Booster Arrested in Kansas

CHATTANOOGA (WRCB) - Investigators with the Chattanooga Police Department confirm former Hixson High School Band Booster Club Treasurer, Stacie Poston, was arrested Thursday night in Kansas City, MO.

Investigators tell Eyewitness News a Grand Jury signed off on a federal indictment before a warrant was issued for Poston's arrest.

Kansas City authorities received information that Stacie Poston was staying in a home in Overland Park, KS.

Poston is facing felony theft charges here in Chattanooga. She will be extradited back to Chattanooga for trial.

Poston may also face additional charges after Kansas City officers found documents in Poston's possession indicating identity theft.

Coming up on Eyewitness News at 6 pm hear from a Poston's landlord who says Poston has stolen from him too.

Updated: Tuesday February 10, 2009 12:15 pm

More money missing.

CHATTANOOOGA (WRCB) - The Hixson High School Band could be missing more money than boosters originally thought.

Booster President Warren Baker tells Eyewitness News he ordered an audit after former club treasurer Stacie Poston allegedly skipped town with $12,000 in club money.

The audit revealed Poston may have been stealing funds since last October.

Baker says an additional $6,900 are missing, and according to Baker there could be more.

Chattanooga Police are still working to file charges against Poston who is reportedly still missing.

Stay with Eyewitness News for the latest on this developing story.

Updated: Saturday February 7, 2009 4 p.m.

Charges will be filed.

CHATTANOOGA (WRCB) - Hixson High Band Booster Club President Warren Baker told Eyewitness News on Saturday that charges will be filed against Stacie Poston. Poston was the treasurer of the club and allegedly skipped town with $12,000 of the band's money.

Baker said they were able to recover about $6,600. Some of it was in personal checks dating back to September.They will likely have to get those rewritten.

He believes Poston still has between $4,000 and $6,000 or more since she also has the records.

Depend on Eyewitness News for the latest on this developing story.

Updated: Friday, February 6, 2009 4:06 p.m.

No Charges Filed

CHATTANOOGA (WRCB) - Boosters gave treasurer Stacie Poston until 10 p.m. Thursday night to return the $12,000 they say stole and she never showed up.

We went to her home Friday and spoke to her husband who told us his wife left two months ago and he just learned about the missing funds .

Booster club members are concerned for Poston's emotional state, and that's why they had not filed formal charges by Friday. Two days after Channel 3 Eyewitness News broke the story on WRCBtv.com, the Chattanooga Times Free Press reported the news on the front page of its Metro section.

"We don't know what's going to happen," said Club President Warren Baker in an interview on Thursday.

"Whether she returns the money back to the board, if the booster group itself will vote to go ahead or charges, it also remains to be seen if she's got all the money."

Late Friday afternoon--yet another twist ...

We are attempting to confirm that at least some of the money is being retrieved at this hour at an undisclosed storage space in Georgia rented by Poston.

If the money is found, it will be up to the booster club to press charges.

As of Friday night, they had not.

New Developments

Updated: Friday, February 6, 2009 4:06 p.m.

CHATTANOOGA (WRCB) - Eyewitness News has obtained a copy of the e-mail that went out to booster members on February 5th regarding the incident. It describes what the band will face due to the $12,000 loss. Here is the e-mail:

Dear booster members:


Here is the latest on where things are regarding Stacie Poston and booster funds.


The local media is now aware of this issue. Both WRCB-TV (channel 3 Eyewitness News) and WDEF-TV (channel 12) have contacted me regarding the current situation. Both have done on camera interviews with me today, which will likely air this evening.


We believe Stacie has in her possession at least $12,000 in checks and cash, as well as our checkbook and other items. (We have closed the checking account and reopened a new one so the checks in her possession cannot be used to access more booster funds.) These monies include all funds collected at the 2008 wrapping booth fundraiser at Northgate Mall.


The booster group voted on Tuesday night to file charges and prosecute Stacie to the full extent of the law. These charges are now ready to be executed, awaiting my word to the officer to take them to the judge to swear out a warrant.

We were contacted this morning by Stacie, who has claimed to be on her way into town tonight. The condition of allowing this last opportunity for restitution is that she remain in contact with the board officer she texted until she arrives in town to meet with myself and the other board officer tonight. To this point she is complying with this requirement. We can still prefer charges at any
moment, and will do so immediately if this last offer fails.

I ask for your understanding as I balance my duties as the president of a
corporation who has had money stolen that was earmarked for the students of our
band with trying to have compassion on someone in a fragile emotional state.

For those of you who were not present at Tuesday night's meeting, and may not
have heard, we have enough funds to make it through this current school year. We
do not have enough to front the money for the scheduled trip to Disney World
(which is now on hold), nor do we have enough to conduct band camp this summer.
If we are not able to recover this money, we will have to do additional
fundraisers to have enough money on hand to be sure band can happen for this
upcoming marching season.

Again, I ask that all requests for information and/or interviews come through
me. Though the principal of Hixson High and the Hamilton County Department of
Education have been kept informed, this is a booster issue, and I am the one
most aware of these items.

I have been a booster member for seven years, and am in process of serving my
third term as president during that time. This issue comes as a shock to all of
us. We are in the process of updating our bylaws to hopefully see that this will
never happen again. I will be finding an appropriate individual, and ordering an
independent audit to give full disclosure to all of us regarding the state of
our finances.

This is disheartening, but we will rise above it. For the sake of our kids, we
must.

Sincerely,
Dr. Warren Baker
HHS Band Booster President

 

First Report Thursday February 5th

CHATTANOOGA (WRCB) - The treasurer of the Hixson High School Band Boosters will reportedly return $12,000 in missing funds.

Channel 3 Eyewitness News first learned about the missing funds from a news tip. Parents of band members were told at a special meeting that money raised through fund raisers for a band trip to Disney World was no longer there. A letter posted January 28th on the booster club's Web site said for the past two weeks booster club officers had been contacted by companies saying they had not received money for goods or services rendered.

Attempts to contact the Booster Club treasurer Stacie Poston failed to resolve the matters. The notice stated she was leaving town for a while but Poston promised checks were left with another officer to pay the bills. The note said that did not happen. Board President Warren Baker filed a report with Chattanooga Police in an effort to pursue charges. The Booster Club members voted Tuesday night to remove Poston from office.

Eyewitness News investigated and found that Baker agreed to hold the warrant if Poston returns the funds. We'll let you know that happens on this developing story. If you have a news tip on a story you want Channel 3 Eyewitness News to break, email us at newstips@wrcbtv.com.

Here is the letter posted on the HHS Band Booster Web site:

Date: January 28th 2009

Dear HHS Band Booster:

On or about January 15, 2009, various Executive Board officers began receiving personal phone calls from companies complaining that they had not received payment from the Boosters for various services rendered or goods received. Attempts to contact Vice President of the Wrapping Booth and Treasurer Stacie Poston about these matters went unanswered. Stacie had in fact informed several executive officers that she was leaving town for a short time, but claimed she had left checks with one of the officers to allow us to pay bills and conduct business in her absence. This in fact never happened. One of these creditors also informed us that they had tried to reach Stacie at her place of employment, but were informed she no longer worked there.

Despite ongoing promises by Stacie Poston that band property and monies in her possession would be returned, the continued failure to do this as promised has prompted the Executive Board to direct President Warren Baker to file a report with the Chattanooga Police Department and to pursue charges against her. This will take place later today.

The Executive Board has voted to remove Stacie Poston from her offices as Vice President of the Wrapping Booth and Treasurer. This decision must be confirmed by a 2/3 vote of the membership at the next called or stated meeting.

As the President, I hereby call for a special meeting of the Booster membership (all parents of students and officers of the board) on Tuesday, February 3, 2009 at 6:30 PM in the band room of the high school. At that meeting an update into where things stand will be given, a vote will be taken to remove Stacie Poston from her offices, and the President will be available then to answer your questions and address any and all concerns.

Dr. Warren P. Baker

HHS Band Booster President

 

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