Sentence in school bribes

CRIME WATCH

June 03, 2006|By LYNN ANDERSON

A Bel Air man was sentenced yesterday to three years' supervised probation, ordered to complete 200 hours of community service and pay $10,000 in fines for his role in a bribery scheme in the Baltimore school system's maintenance department.

David Joseph Clemons, 59, the owner of Polar Bear Heating and Air Conditioning Inc., pleaded guilty in Baltimore Circuit Court to bribing the former head of the school system's facilities and maintenance department, Rajiv Dixit, so that Dixit would award more contracts to Clemons' firm, according to a statement released yesterday by the state prosecutor's office.

Clemons is one of 10 people convicted in the scheme. Dixit admitted stealing millions from the school system, in part by submitting inflated boiler repair invoices, and was sentenced to five years in prison last year. Gilbert Sapperstein, who owned All-State Boiler Services Inc. and is a liquor license broker, also has pleaded guilty. He was sentenced to 18 months in jail but was released to home detention after a month.

As part of his plea agreement, Clemons agreed to make a $10,000 donation each to the city school system and College Bound, a nonprofit organization.

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