By Kevin Kelley
Former Fairview High School and Lewis F. Mayer Middle School campus principal Kevin Liptrap has been indicted on two theft-related charges, Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Bill Mason’s office announced Tuesday.
Court records indicate Liptrap, whose given first name is Frederick, has filed for bankruptcy following two court filings against him for unpaid credit card debt.
According to a statement from the prosecutor, Liptrap, a Bay Village resident, stole approximately $50,000 from student activity accounts between Sept. 30, 2008 and Oct. 1, 2010.
“The school system observed irregularities in Liptrap’s documents pertaining to receipts from school events and student participation fees for programs that included sports,” the statement said.
Because Liptrap was bonded, the district expects to get any missing money back from the bonding company, school officials have said.
Liptrap resigned Oct. 5 after being confronted by district officials.
Liptrap made an admission to the representatives of the state auditor’s office, who also confronted him, Superintendent Brion Deitsch later told West Life.
The superintendent said he then gave Liptrap a “relief of duty” letter indicating a suspension with pay. Deitsch said he then gave Liptrap the opportunity to resign, which he did in light of his admission.
“He was very quiet, very somber,” Deitsch said of Liptrap’s demeanor.
As West Life reported in October, Liptrap turned over money belonging to the school the same day he resigned. The prosecutor’s statement said the amount of money Liptrap handed over to Fairview Park Police was $5,000.
According to a Fairview Park Police report, officers were asked to be available at the school the afternoon of Oct. 5 because an employee was under investigation for possible theft of school funds.
Lt. Rich Deem said Liptrap told state auditors who earlier confronted him at the school that he would turn over money that he had at his Bay Village home. Fairview Park officers were asked to follow Liptrap to his home. “For the safety of all concerned, they wanted a police escort,” Deem said.
The Ohio Auditor conducted a special audit as a result of Liptrap’s alleged theft. Liptrap’s State Teachers Retirement System (STRS) account will be frozen for the purpose of restitution if ordered by the court, the prosecutor’s office said.
Liptrap also fleeced approximately $47,000 from a former fiancé between June 2006 and August 2008, the prosecutor’s office said. He deceived the victim by falsely claiming he was going through a divorce, had fallen on hard times, and needed money for living expenses, according to the prosecutor’s statement.
Liptrap’s arraignment is scheduled for July 6.
Rocky River Municipal Court records indicate LVNV Funding in April filed a claim of $9,275 against Liptrap for unpaid credit card debt. That case is still open.
Midland Funding LLC filed a $1,877 claim against Liptrap, also for unpaid credit card balances. The court issued a judgment in favor of the plaintiff. Court records indicate Liptrap filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy May 31, resulting in an automatic stay of action against the debtor in the case.