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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Liberty schools superintendent suspended amid theft probe



The superintendent of Liberty County schools was removed from office today after being accused of using an unauthorized credit card to rack up $2,000 in personal spending, including alcohol and lingerie.

Gloria Gay Uzzell was arrested today and charged with grand theft, official misconduct and failure to properly respond to a public records request. Gov. Rick Scott also signed an executive order today suspending her from office while she faces the felony charges.

In August, Uzzell upset incumbent Superintendent Sue Summers in the Democratic primary. She did not have a Republican opponent in the general election. Summers resigned before the end of her term, and Scott signed off on allowing Uzzell to take over the job a bit early.

Here is more from the Florida Department of Law Enforcement:

Agents with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement Tallahassee Regional Operations Center and State Attorney Willie Meggs obtained a warrant for the arrest of Gloria Gay Uzzell, 51, of Bristol, Fla., earlier today on one count of grand theft, one count of official misconduct and one count of
failing to disclose information in a public records request.

The investigation shows Uzzell opened a credit card in the name of the Liberty County School Board without its approval or knowledge. Investigators allege she made numerous personal purchases on the Visa card including clothing, lodging, lingerie, fuel, beauty supplies and alcohol.

Investigators believe Uzzell altered the credit card statements, blacking out personal purchases and changing travel vouchers to match her credit card purchases. She is accused of making more than $2,000 in personal charges on the credit card.

Uzzell turned herself into the Liberty County Sheriff’s Office around 1 p.m. today and was booked into the Liberty County Jail on a $10,000 bond. Uzzell was elected as Liberty County School Superintendent in November 2012.

The State Attorney’s Office, 2nd Judicial Circuit will prosecute this case.

[Last modified: Wednesday, July 17, 2013 6:34pm]


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