Agents with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement Tallahassee Regional Operations Center and State Attorney Willie Meggs obtained a warrant for the arrest of Gloria Gay Uzzell, 51, of Bristol, Fla., last Wednesday on one count of grand theft, one count of official misconduct and one count of failing to disclose information in a public records request.
The investigation shows Uzzell opened a credit card in the name of the Liberty County School Board without its approval or knowledge. Investigators allege she made numerous personal purchases on the Visa card including clothing, lodging, lingerie, fuel, beauty supplies and alcohol.
Investigators believe Uzzell altered the credit card statements, blacking out personal purchases and changing travel vouchers to match her credit card purchases.
She is accused of making more than $2,000 in personal charges on the credit card.
As previously reported by The County Record, when confronted with the spending allegations by Liberty School Board Chairman Kyle Peddie, Uzzell blamed hotel mixups and not wearing her eyeglasses for the numerous personal charges on the credit card. Questionable purchases included over $1000 at Chico’s and Ultra in Pier Park, $1193 at Dillards, $341 at Stein Mart and $93 at Cost Cutters. Hotel charges for beer and a lavish $52 breakfast were also among the items scrutinized.
Uzzell later reimbursed the school district.
Uzzell turned herself into the Liberty County Sheriff’s Office around 1 p.m. Wednesday and was booked into the Liberty County Jail on a $10,000 bond. Uzzell was elected as Liberty County School Superintendent in November 2012.
The State Attorney’s Office, 2nd Judicial Circuit will prosecute this case.
As of press time Tuesday morning, Governor Rick Scott had not yet announced who would be appointed interim superintendent. The School Board office advises no one is currently serving as acting superintendent.