Former CEO for the Florida Coalition Against Domestic Violence (FCADV) Tiffany Carr is out on bail Tuesday night after turning herself in to Jackson County Sheriff’s Office authorities in North Carolina earlier in the day. Carr posted a $500,000 bond, $50,000 of which was cash, after being charged with three felonies. She used her North Carolina residence to cover the remaining balance.
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) says Carr and former FCADV Chief Financial Officer Patricia Duarte submitted false quarterly reports, billed the state for vacant positions, and charged for services that were never provided. The FDLE says the money was then used for excessive bonuses and leave payouts, including $3.4 million to Carr and $291,000 for Duarte.
The FDLE says the money was then used for excessive bonuses and leave payouts, including $3.4 million to Carr and $291,000 for Duarte.
FDLE’s Office of Executive Investigations opened an investigation into Carr and Duarte in 2021 after inspectors received information from the Florida Office of the Chief Inspector General, Department of Children and Families and the Florida House Public Integrity and Ethics Committee.
“Non-profit organizations exist to improve the lives of others, but during our investigation, it became clear the only thing these FCADV executives were serving were each other. Their selfishness and greed came at the expense of domestic violence victims who needed their organization the most,” said FDLE Commissioner Mark Glass.
“I appreciate the work of our agents and analysts, exploring years of documentation to detail these crimes as well as DCF who assisted on this case.”
FCADV was a nonprofit organization established in statutes and the official organization in charge of distributing state and federal grants to Florida’s 42 domestic violence shelters. Its mission was “to create a violence free world by empowering women and children through the elimination of personal and institutional violence and oppression against all people.”
FCADV was required to submit an annual budget to the legislature for approval. They oversaw more than $40 million in funding.
In 2020, Florida ended its contract with FCADV. In 2021, Gov. Ron DeSantis issued an executive order to dissolve the organization.
Attorney General Ashley Moody’s Office of Statewide Prosecution is handling the case.
“These officials were entrusted to run an organization to assist those seeking a safe haven from abuse. Instead of ensuring state funds went to help those in need, they schemed together to steal more than $3.7 million for grossly inflated salaries and vacations,” Moody said. “We previously took civil action to rid the organization’s bad management, and now we are filing criminal charges against these former officials.”
Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis also issued statements on Carr’s detainment.
“Government corruption is a disease that weakens trust in our institutions and steals vital resources away from our citizens who need it most. The allegations against Tiffany Carr and her co-conspirator are despicable, and it’s time they answered for their actions,” Patronis said.
“I’m thankful for the hard work of so many, including my sworn fraud detectives, the FDLE, and the Attorney General’s Office in helping bring these bad actors to justice and holding them accountable to the Floridians they were entrusted to serve.”