Aiken County EMS investigation reveals missing money

By: Gene Petriello Email
By: Gene Petriello Email

News 12 at 6 o'clock, Nov. 5, 2007

AIKEN, S.C. --- We finally have some answers for you in the case of the EMS Director and his wife accused of misusing money. SLED and the county Sheriff's Office have wrapped up their investigation into Phil and Lynn Clark.

We know the results. But there are still many more questions that need to be answered.

Pat is concerned. This after the Aiken County EMS Director and his wife were taken off the payroll over financial concerns in the donation account last month.

"I want to know it's going for that purpose and not something else," says Pat Sallee.

The SLED and Aiken County Sheriff's Office investigation is now complete. Solicitor Barbara Morgan tells News 12, after reviewing the case and talking with investigators, it's clear money is missing. Morgan says the Clark's may be responsible.

"It's also clear that we couldn't pursue criminal charges because there isn't sufficient evidence in hand to prove it," says 2nd Circuit Solicitor Barbara Morgan.

The money missing comes from receipts in mileage, the donation account and other areas.

With the investigation complete, the concern now is focusing on keeping better records so this doesn't happen again.

"Give us the tools. Give us the opportunity to rectify the situation and pursue it criminally if it's appropriate," says Ms. Morgan.

That's what the county administrator is trying to do. Every month, the county looks at credit card receipts. And now, about 60 county-issued credit cards are under review.

Gene asked, "Was there something on those receipts that raised a red flag that you needed to collect all of them, or was this a collection based upon the investigation of the EMS Director?”

Clay Killian answered, "The investigation did ask us, made up, ask ourselves that we needed to look at this."

As for Pats' thoughts on all of this, "I think they need to go in and maybe take some credit cards away from them," which is something the county is now looking into.

"If they need to be stricter, great; if we need to have [fewer] cards, fewer people having them," says Killian.

Solicitor Morgan adds she can't do anything on her end unless there is enough evidence and safeguards are in place to take the necessary action.

There is an interim director of the EMS and Emergency Service. The county is now looking to fill those positions immediately.

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  • by Stacey Location: Aiken on Apr 22, 2008 at 04:37 AM
    Wonder if Barbara Morgan enjoyed baking cakes for Phil Clarke too. In the September 15, 2005 issue of the Aiken Standard (front page) she is quoted as saying, "He was this big old fella who was just so nice. I used to make cakes for him." when taking about gifts she made to a circuit court judge. Clearly inappropriate behavior, a violation of judicial ethics and misconduct in office.
  • by milly Location: aiken on Jan 29, 2008 at 04:37 AM
    With the mistrial of Joseph Hankerson it doesn't appear that she can successfully take any cases to trial. The situation with the EMS director clearly probable cause exists for misconduct in office and embezzlement of public funds charges.
  • by Incredible Prosecutor Location: Wagener on Jan 1, 2008 at 07:51 AM
    Solictor Barbara Morgan claims that she's going to prosecute the Dorch, Handerson, Baldwin and Cook murder cases in early 2008 and that she even going to throw in Susan Meloan for sexual misconduct with a minor. Allbeit she did not have any murder trials in 2007, but since 2008 is an election year for her, maybe she's planning to do her job this year.
  • by Aiken Location: Aiken County on Dec 28, 2007 at 05:17 AM
    What does CPT Grant and the new SLED director say about their investigation? They know if warrants were issued, another solicitor would prosecute the case just like we did with Judge Charles Carter's case. They know Barbara Morgan attempted to quash their independent investigation and findings.
  • by git Location: Aiken on Dec 24, 2007 at 05:38 AM
    The Aiken County Council or the Governor should ask SLED to investigate Barbara Morgan for interfering with this investigation and trying to improperly influence SLED/CPT Grant.
  • by Lana Location: Aiken on Dec 24, 2007 at 05:35 AM
    Barbara Morgan has 1000's of cases where people have been arrested that she cannot pursue because there isn't sufficient evidence in hand to prove the charges. Heck just look at all the drug cases where she's maliciously just keeping the defendants in the detention center when the arresting narcotics officer has been fired for cause or the dozen or so murder cases she's just hoping for some kind of plea bargain deal because she can't prove it. What's different about her friend Phil Clarke?
  • by Weeks Location: Aiken on Nov 20, 2007 at 05:00 AM
    "It's also clear that we couldn't pursue criminal charges because there isn't sufficient evidence in hand to prove it," says 2nd Circuit Solicitor Barbara Morgan. However, she fails to mention that there is probable case to file an arrest warrant. With a 35.1% conviction rate and a 50% trial conviction rate (on average every other trial is dismissed) during the last fiscal year this statement could be made for thousands of people who were arrested in her circuit. Currently, there are over 4500 pending criminal cases in the 2nd Judicial Circuit and they have had less than 6 jury trials this year in General Sessions. Typical, she's just trying to mislead the media and public again. Please do a followup story and pin her down on this point. Thanks for your coverage of this story.
  • by PlayingFavorites Location: Graniteville on Nov 19, 2007 at 02:16 PM
    65 out of 100 people arrested in Aiken are not successfully prosecuted with a 35.1% conviction rate. If Phil would have refused to quit, it's a sure bet that the SLED puppets would have filed arrest warrants for misconduct in office and embezzlement. Barbara Morgan is playing God and figured since he work for the county since 1974 along with her office and lost his director job she called her SLED puppets off the trail.
  • by Tom Campbell Location: News 12 on Nov 19, 2007 at 10:13 AM
    Regarding the Jason Cook case, a man named Tonnie Baldwin is the suspect. He was convicted in 2001 of robbery in another case, and because he was a two time loser, received an automatic life sentence--no parole.
    He's in the prison today
  • by Hunter Location: North Augusta on Nov 18, 2007 at 10:09 AM
    We thought that it was a judge's responsibility to determine if probable cause exists once SLED files an arrest warrant with a magistrate. It seems like to solicitor is improperly trying to act like the prosecutor, judge and jury in this case???
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