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Former Employee of Missouri Nonprofit Agency Gets Jail Time for Embezzling $98,000 in NHTSA Grant Funds

Elaine Cummins, a former employee of The Research Foundation, Kansas City, MO, was sentenced in U.S. District Court in Kansas City to 12 months in jail and ordered to pay $98,068 in restitution for embezzlement. In November 2004, Cummins pled guilty to a charge of embezzling the money from the NHTSA-funded “Think First Program,” which is designed to prevent spinal cord and head injuries by educating young adults on the dangers of drunk driving and other irresponsible driving behaviors. Between 2001 and 2003, Cummins generated and cashed fraudulent checks for program events that never occurred as well as embezzling some cash fees paid by attendees of another traffic education program. The case was investigated jointly with the FBI.