190828_GMA_GreekLifeOffice

The Greek Life Office is located on the first floor of the Tate Student Center on the University of Georgia’s campus in Athens, Georgia. The university issued a statement on Aug. 26, 2019 announcing an investigation into the misappropriation of funds from student organizations and updated the statement on Aug. 27 to reveal that the “criminal activity” had been traced back to one now-deceased university employee. (Photo/Gabriella Audi, www.gabbyaudi10.wixsite.com/mysite-1)

The University of Georgia employee who stole more than $1.3 million from student organizations over the past decade killed herself on June 20.

Lasina Evans shot herself in her car at the Tate Center Pay Lot near Gate 10 of Sanford Stadium on the morning of June 20. She was taken to Piedmont Athens Regional Medical Center, where she died.

Evans, who was 46 at the time of her death, worked as an administrative assistant in UGA’s Greek Life Office. According to the findings of UGA’s Internal Auditing Division, the theft of funds held by student organizations was enabled by a lack of oversight from Greek Life Director Claudia Shamp and her subordinate Elizabeth Pittard.

Shamp, who retired on Aug. 23 as Pittard resigned, told police she had been the GLO Director since 1996, according to UGA Police Department reports.

The stolen funds were held by the UGA Interfraternity Council, UGA Panhellenic Council and UGA Miracle, a student-run philanthropic organization that benefits Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta.

Evans "had almost complete control over all financial activity" without "oversight or independent review of these activities" in the Greek Life Office, according to an Aug. 1 malfeasance report produced by UGA IAD.

According to an earlier malfeasance report produced on July 29, Shamp “fully relied on and trusted” Evans to “handle all financial matters pertaining to GLO and the organizations overseen by GLO.”

The report states that the student organizations had accounts with Synovus Bank, where Evans “developed a working relationship with employees at the bank, which she leveraged to subvert controls in order to gain access to accounts and change operating controls for the purpose of directing funds to her personal use.”

The funds were stolen with checks payable to Evans, unauthorized ATM and bank counter withdrawals, as well as debit card purchases.

Police reports indicate that Shamp hired Evans in 2000 to help run the GLO and manage “all of the financial accounts that were handled through the Greek Life Office.”

Evans regularly played the lottery — the Georgia Lottery informed police that since 2009, Evans had made 51 claims to the Lottery Commission totaling more than $102,000.

Evans had seven vehicles registered under her name, including a 2016 Mercedes-Benz C 300, police discovered. Throughout the period of the thefts, she made payments on a mortgage and several vehicle loans. A handyman interviewed by police said Evans paid him to do a variety of home repairs.

At the time of her death, Evans was making about $32,000 from her job at UGA and about $24,000 from a second job at Piedmont Athens Regional Medical Center.

Several family members, friends and Evans’ boyfriend told police they were unaware of the theft, believing that Evans’ two jobs and lottery payments were the source of her wealth.

The Red & Black received tips about Evans’ role in the case earlier in our reporting, but was not able to confirm it until receiving UGA documents. After receiving documents on Aug. 30 that confirmed Evans’ role, The Red & Black made several attempts to contact Evans’ family and inform them that Evans would be named in this story.

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(3) comments

Pfrog23

What I posted when this happened back in June:



"The silence from the UGA community on this matter is palpable! It's as if this woman never existed or even mattered! So much for "stopping the stigma"! 😥 https://www.nami.org/stigmafree"



Now I see that this had more to do with an ongoing investigation than it did with another human being falling through the cracks due to mental health issues and the lack of a good support network to help them through a rough patch.



It's still sad that she felt the only way out was to take her own life. Probably more to do with the shame (and embarrassment) of getting caught than anything else.



I feel that what she did was wrong, and it was especially criminal to steal from a charity that was in place to help sick children.



Not gonna condemn or pass judgment on her though.



She already did that herself and it's sadly irreversible!

Jerome78

Uga full of 💩 blame it all on the dead black lady

TheProfessor

You MORON! She committed a crime. Money saved by her suicide, no need to prosecute.

Shamp should lose retirement and be fined for losses and Pittard should also compensate for losses.

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