Balto. Co. police officer indicted in housing scheme

Prosecutors say he lied to profit from program

October 17, 2003|BY A SUN STAFF WRITER

A federal grand jury indicted a Baltimore County police officer yesterday on charges of making false statements about his participation in a federal housing program designed to persuade officers to live in certain neighborhoods, authorities said.

Officer Dana C. Williams, a nine-year-veteran assigned to the Towson precinct, is accused of buying a house in Essex through the U.S. Housing and Urban Development's "Officer Next Door" program but not living there, as is required by the agency.

The indictment, announced by U.S. Attorney Thomas M. DiBiagio, alleges that Williams lied to a HUD agent last year about living in the house.

Williams, 43, of Middle River received a discount of $18,920 for purchasing the HUD-owned house in 1998. A condition of the sale is that officers use the homes, typically in economically distressed communities, as their primary residence for three years after the closing, federal officials said. But investigators said Williams rented the property to two consecutive tenants.

Attempts to reach Williams were unsuccessful late yesterday.

Williams appeared in U.S. District Court yesterday and was released on his own recognizance, said Marcy Murphy, a spokeswoman for the U.S. attorney's office.

Williams has been suspended from the police force without pay, said Bill Toohey, a county police spokesman.

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