Thomas Petitions to Plead Guilty to Felony

A member of the Sumter County Board of Education faces removal from office next month.

Dana Thomas has agreed to plead guilty to mail fraud in connection with a scheme to defraud Choctaw County, Ala., Schools of money set aside for professional development.

Thomas is a former principal at Choctaw County High School, when the incident is alleged to have happened.

The president of the Sumter board said he has not spoken to Thomas since the petition to plead guilty was filed.

"We're trying to find out what would be the procedure or what we need to follow, if for some reason, he needs to be removed from the board or whether the Ethics Commission will come in and tell us that we need to do something," said Johnny Patrick, president of the Sumter County Board of Education.

According to Alabama state law, any office holder convicted of a felony shall be removed from office.

Thomas faces a hearing on his guilty plea on Sept 11. The plea bargain was made with prosecutors. A judge would have to accept the plea in order for it to final.

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