Clarkston council member charged with embezzlement
10/18/2013, 6 a.m.
Clarkston City Councilwoman Joan Swaney, whose personal motto is “Live with purpose, act with character,” has been indicted by a federal grand jury for allegedly embezzling more than $50,000 from the Clarkston Community Center.
Swaney, who was the center’s office manager from 2003 until December 2012, is accused of using the money to help pay for family vacations, medical bills, personal car repairs, a boat charter and other personal expenses.
The indictment said she wrote checks to herself from the community center’s bank account, forged the signature of the director on checks, then deposited those forged checks into her personal account. The missing funds were identified during an internal audit conducted in 2012.
Swaney, a 35-year Clarkston resident, has been on the City Council since 2010. She served as the city’s vice mayor in 2012. Her terms ends Dec. 31. She did not seek re-election.
She could not be reached for comment at press time Thursday.