City commissioner wants contracts tied to Maddox audited

Photo: Tallahassee DIA
Photo: Tallahassee DIA(WCTV)
Published: Aug. 7, 2019 at 11:50 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn
By: Katie Kaplan, WCTV Eyewitness News

August 7, 2019

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) -- On Tuesday, suspended City Commissioner Scott Maddox and his longtime cohort Paige Carter-Smith pleaded guilty to three counts of fraud in a federal corruption probe.

Dozens of additional charges will dismissed when the sentence is handed out. The pleas have left many unanswered questions in the years-long investigation.

On Wednesday, Commissioner Jeremy Matlow said there was still more work to be done.

"We got elected to clean up City Hall and that's what we're going to do," Matlow told WCTV's Katie Kaplan.

Commissioner Matlow said that earlier in the day he had emailed a "memo" to colleagues, including the city auditor and the city attorney, in which he called for an audit of past city projects that Maddox may have had influence over.

"It's troubling because we realize there companies that have engaged in illegal behavior with former commissioner Maddox who still have contracts with the city," he said.

Matlow said they are working to identify companies that may have illegally obtained contracts.

"I think we are well within our rights to re-bid a contract," Matlow said.

Ride-sharing service 'Uber' confirmed to WCTV on Wednesday that they were one of the corporations named in the federal court documents. The company paid $30,000 to a company that Maddox and Carter-Smith were tied to, in exchange for a vote.

In a statement on Wednesday, Uber said they viewed themselves as "victims of extortion" in the case.

Richard Greenberg, the former president of the Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (FACDL), said that under law, corporations are seen as people and can be prosecuted, but that it does not happen often.

"I would be surprised if any corporation is prosecuted," he said.

However, Greenberg said Maddox and Carter-Smith will likely face prison time.

"In the plea agreement, the counts that they pleaded to and the total amount of money involved was about $70,000, but when you look at the Statement of Facts, there were several hundred thousand dollars that were paid," he said.

Greenberg said the judge will take all of the information from the Statement of Facts into consideration during the sentencing, which is scheduled for November 19. He added that since Maddox has pleaded guilty, he is most-like going to face a "felony suspension" from the Florida Supreme Court, which will likely be followed by disbarment.