Our reporters check in daily, sometimes more than once, at courthouses in Warren and Shenandoah counties for case filings, search warrants, indictments and such. On Tuesday, they were surprised to see that 3,000 documents in the Front Royal-Warren County Economic Development Authority alleged embezzlement case had been filed.
The documents reveal an amazing amount of information about a case that seems to be entangling more people and companies in its web as news filters out.
We learned in the courtroom on Monday during former EDA Executive Director Jennifer McDonald’s second bond hearing that the amount of the alleged embezzlement from the EDA is much higher – $21 million – than the $17.6 million that was noted in a lawsuit the EDA filed against McDonald and eight other individuals and companies. While our reporter was slogging through the 3,000 documents on Tuesday, he zeroed in on new allegations of financial irregularities dating back to 2000 that seemed to explain the increase to $21 million.
Our reporter will continue to peruse these documents and will be reporting on them in the coming days.
We are covering this news story as we do every other news story we work on: we report what’s said in public meetings, we quote from public documents and reliable sources. There are many rumors and misinformation floating across social media, blogs and websites about this case. They may be interesting, but they won’t appear on our website or in print without being vetted. Our reporters value truth, accuracy, fairness and objectivity in order to be known as a trustworthy source of news and information. We’re not going to rush to get something out on our website just to be the first to break the news.