THE UNITED STATES ATTORNEY'S OFFICE
NORTHERN DISTRCIT OF TEXAS
|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE||August 31, 2012|
Former Ira Independent School District Superintendent Sentenced to 14 Months in Federal Prison on Mail Fraud Conviction
LUBBOCK, Texas — Dr. Larry Gene Devitt, the former superintendent of the Ira Independent School District (IISD), was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Sam R. Cummings to 14 months in federal prison and ordered to pay $25,188 in restitution, following his guilty plea in May 2012 to one count of mail fraud, announced U.S. Attorney Sarah R. Saldaña of the Northern District of Texas. Judge Cummings ordered that Devitt surrender to the Bureau of Prisons on October 5, 2012. In accordance with the terms of his plea agreement, Devitt agreed to voluntarily surrender his Texas Educator Certificate and understands that he will not have an opportunity to apply for another Certificate.
According to documents filed in the case, from July 2006 through July 2007, while Devitt, 64, of Snyder, Texas, served as the superintendent of the IISD, he embezzled $13,438 in federal funds. He misused IISD vendors and the IISD Visa and Discover credit cards, issued in his name, to purchase property for his personal benefit. Devitt, however, represented that he was using the IISD credit cards and vendors for IISD work-related expenses, including supplies, travel, staff development and training. Devitt directed IISD staff to pay the vendors and credit cards by drawing a check on the IISD accounts.
The case was investigated by the U.S. Department of Education. Assistant U.S. Attorney Paulina Jacobo was in charge of the prosecution.