Fired Dayton city employee RoShawn Winburn, indicted as part of a federal corruption probe, will be tried Feb. 24 after U.S. District Judge Thomas M. Rose on Friday granted a continuance.
Winburn, 45, has pleaded not guilty to three counts of honest services wire fraud, two counts of corruptly soliciting a bribe and one count of making a false statement to the FBI. He was scheduled to go on trial Oct. 15.
His attorney, David P. Williamson, said the continuance will give him time to “go over the discovery that the government has provided and we’ve made some further requests from them for some additional documents. And so far that’s all been happening and we anticipate it will continue to happen.”
Winburn is a former Huber Heights council member and the business and technical assistance administrator for the city of Dayton’s Human Relations Council. The city of Dayton fired him after his indictment, a decision Winburn appealed and his case will be heard after the completion of the federal charges.
Winburn was originally hired by the city in 2014 as director of the regional Minority Business Assistance Center, which the city hosts for the state. In 2015 he switched to the administrator job, a position that was directly involved in reviewing requests for bids and certification of small businesses. In mid-2016 he returned to the MBAC job and was there until early April, when he was promoted to the administrator job, which paid $84,988 annually.
The indictment alleges Winburn solicited and accepted more than $20,000 in cash from individuals and companies between 2014 and 2017. In return, prosecutors claim Winburn provided certifications for the city’s Procurement Enhancement Plan and other minority and small-business programs without performing complete verification of qualifications.
He’s also accused of disclosing confidential information on upcoming projects and influencing city employees to not fully sanction those who failed to comply with contractual obligations.
The indictments of Winburn and three other men were announced in April by Interim Southern District U.S. Attorney Benjamin C. Glassman, Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost and FBI Assistant Special Agent in Charge Joe Deters.
At the time Glassman said it was the first wave of indictments in what Deters called a “culture of corruption in Dayton-area politics.” No further indictments have been announced.
On Sept. 27 former Dayton city commissioner Joey D. Williams pleaded guilty and was convicted of corruptly soliciting a bribe as part of a plea agreement with federal prosecutors.
In a statement of facts filed with his plea, Williams admitted that as a commissioner he asked a business owner seeking city contracts to do work on his home at a substantially discounted price. The unnamed business performed more than $35,000 in work on the Williams home. Williams contributed about $7,000 of his own money, the document says.
In return, Williams encouraged at least one city employee to find work for the business, the statement says. He also voted to approve a contract between the city and the business without disclosing the “improper benefits” he had received, according to the statement.
Williams, 53, who in May left his job as Dayton market president of KeyBank, will be sentenced on Jan. 29.
In July former state lawmaker Clayton Luckie, 56, pleaded guilty to one count of mail fraud related to defrauding the city’s minority business set-aside program, and faces sentencing on Nov. 15. Luckie admitted to accepting $2,000 in bribes as part of the scheme.
Dayton businessman Brian Higgins, 48, was indicted on three counts of mail fraud and one of wire fraud for allegedly defrauding an insurance company in 2014 and 2015 with a claim involving a leaking fish tank that damaged his home.
Higgins, who formerly owned the defunct Sidebar 410 in the Oregon District and a livery service that hauled bodies for the Montgomery County coroner, pleaded not guilty and his trial is scheduled for Feb. 18.
STAYING WITH THE STORY
The Dayton Daily News first broke the news about a federal investigation into corruption in Dayton. The newspaper will continue to dig into this important story to find out what’s really going on. If you have tips or any information on this investigation, please call or email Lynn Hulsey at 937-225-7455 or email@example.com.
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