Updated on Monday, March 27, 2023 — Former commissioner formally arraigned on felony embezzlement
An arrest warrant was issued Friday in the case of a former Logan County commissioner.
An embezzlement charge was filed in Logan County against 39-year-old Kody Ray Ellis, who resigned from his post on Feb. 28 as the District 2 Commissioner. He was sworn into office in 2021.
Related Article: County Commissioner under investigation announces impending resignation
Ellis has been a target of an ongoing investigation by the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation who were notified by local officials.
Following a January 13 Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) meeting, OSBI officials requested and spoke to Ellis in a closed-door meeting.
Guthrie News Page first reported the investigation on Feb. 10. Related article: Logan County Commissioner target of OSBI investigation; AG Office’s now reviewing case
“A criminal investigation conducted by the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation (OSBI) was presented to my office alleging possible embezzlement charges against a Logan County elected official,” Logan County District Attorney Laura Austin Thomas said in February.
After reviewing the investigation, Thomas recused her office from the case and turned the matter over to the Attorney General’s Office.
A multi-county grand jury convened in Oklahoma County and indicted the former commissioner with embezzling fuel.
In a grand jury hearing, a representative of the Attorney General’s Office presents evidence to the grand jury and questions witnesses. If the grand jury issues an indictment, the defendant is prosecuted in the district court where the indictment is filed.
Court papers reveal between July 1, 2021, through July 31, 2022, Ellis misused public money by fueling his personal vehicle with gasoline belonging to District 2 despite receiving a $700 monthly stipend for reimbursement for mileage.
Four witnesses were identified, including an OSBI agent and three employees, in the grand jury hearing.
The court order states the Attorney General’s Office will prosecute the case and allow the Logan County District Judge to continue the case in Logan County.
The bond amount listed on the warrant is $5,000.
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