By Megan Sayles
AFRO Business Writer
FBI agents arrested Dunbar High School football coach Lawrence Smith on Sept. 8. He was taken into custody on federal wire fraud charges pertaining to overtime fraud and filing a false tax return.
Smith, who is also a police detective for the Baltimore City Public School Police, allegedly raked in more than $215,000 in fraudulent overtime pay, according to a statement from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Maryland.
Smith was set to appear in a U.S. District Court in Baltimore at 2:15 p.m. on Friday.
Smith started working for Baltimore City Public Schools (City Schools) in 2002, according to information released by the district. In 2016, he was a police officer, and was promoted to become a detective within City Schools police force. In that role, he subsequently began controlling the School Police Overtime Unit, according to the statement.
The most recent earnings to be made public by City Schools show that from Oct. 16, 2021 to Oct. 15, 2022, Smith was paid $153,810. Nearly $68,000 of that amount was overtime pay, according to a City Schools database. Some of the money was allegedly fraudulently obtained.
According to the statement, Smith reportedly made false claims that he was working overtime shifts from January 2019 through August 2022, while he was at home, running personal errands, on vacation and coaching football.
Smith has also been accused of failing to file taxes for 2017, 2019 and 2020 and submitting fraudulent W-4 forms to his employer.
Megan Sayles is a Report for America Corps member.