• Councilwoman resigns post after allegedly stealing from community center

    By: Kerry Kavanaugh


    CLARKSTON, Ga. - The Clarkston City councilwoman indicted for stealing from a community center has resigned.

    Channel 2 Action News obtained a copy of a letter from the Clarkston mayor saying council member Joan Swaney is stepping down.

    The mayor continues to assure residents the alleged theft does not include any city funds.

    According to the letter, Swaney does not want her pending legal issues to cause any embarrassment to the community or the City Council.

    The city learned Thursday Swaney is accused of stealing more than $50,000 from the Clarkston Community Center where she served as office manager for six years.

    "It's always painful to find out people are stealing from the little guys," said center director McKenzie Wren.

    Wren said the "little guys" include the children who come to the center to learn and grow.

    She told Channel 2's Kerry Kavanaugh the center offers dozens of programs serving a broad range of people from children to refugees on a shoe string budget.

    An internal audit revealed the center's budget was short thousands of dollars.

    The indictment said Swaney wrote a series of checks from the community center coffers to pay for personal expenses including family vacations, medical bills, car repairs, even a personal boat charter.

    Kavanaugh went to Swaney's home for comment. She also contacted her attorney. Kavanaugh has not received a response as of yet.

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