Ohio Lottery Commission Staff Accused Of Stealing From Taxpayers

Key staff at the Ohio Lottery Commission allegedly ripped off Ohioans.

According to an Ohio Inspector General Report, nine employees, including investigators, with the Ohio Lottery Commission were paid nearly $30,000 for time they didn’t work.

That was from a review of only a month-and-a-half period. The report stated the alleged misconduct could date back as far as 2013.

“On August 6, 2021, the Ohio Lottery Commission (OLC) notified the Office of the Ohio Inspector General concerning allegations of theft of time by OLC investigators Allen Travis, Andrew Harvey, Christopher Monda, Christopher Robakowski, Gregory Rightnour, and Robert Ellis, and a lack of supervision by OLC Investigation Supervisor John Hopkins, at the JACK Thistledown Racino (Thistledown) located in North Randall, Ohio,” the report said.

“The Ohio Lottery Commission explained that OLC part-time employee Darrin Glencer had reported to the commission that OLC investigators assigned to Thistledown were submitting fraudulent time sheets to OLC for time not worked and were forwarding OLC phone lines to personal cellphone numbers to facilitate the fraud. Glencer had further stated that Hopkins was aware of these issues and had not taken action to remedy the situation.

On August 12, 2021, the Office of the Ohio Inspector General opened a preliminary inquiry to evaluate the matter. However, after a review by investigators of additional documentation received from the OLC, the Office of the Ohio Inspector General changed the preliminary inquiry to an investigation on August 31, 2021.”

The OLC team serves as the primary regulatory presence at the racino but is not employed by or involved in the daily operations of the racino.

The OLC staff are tasked with assisting those with gambling addiction, among other duties.

“The Office of the Ohio Inspector General also determined that the OLC investigators were not routinely working on the gaming floor at Thistledown per their job descriptions, and that many of their responsibilities were either completed by Thistledown staff or were not completed at all.”

The Ohio Inspector General said it is forwarding this report of investigation to the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor’s Office for review.