The former executive director of a Philadelphia nonprofit that helps the needy has been ordered to pay back $90,000 that prosecutors say she stole for personal use.
Rodnell Griffin, 68, used ATM cards to withdraw money 500 times from the Hunting Park Neighborhood Advisory Committee's bank account, including 10 instances at ATMs inside SugarHouse Casino, according to a federal indictment filed in April.
Griffin pleaded guilty in August, and a judge Tuesday ordered her to make restitution. Her attorney, Geoffrey Johnson, said she would not appeal the judge's order, which also requires her to complete 600 hours of community service and serve one day in prison.
"Ms. Griffin is going to make every effort to follow through on the judge's wise suggestion that she continue a life of community service and that she uses her time to make up for what she's done and to help people," he said.
The organization Griffin used to lead offers food, clothing, and other assistance to the poor, with funding primarily from the city's Office of Housing and Community Development through a federal grant administered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.
The case was investigated by the FBI and the city's Office of Inspector General, officials said Wednesday.
"Restitution is one of the most direct and impactful ways that someone can repay their debt to society, and that's why we always request full restitution in our cases," Inspector General Amy L. Kurland said. "The recovered funds will go a long way toward helping the Hunting Park community."