A Grand Lake attorney and her former employee already facing multiple criminal charges of theft and perjury charges in Oklahoma and Missouri are now facing a civil suit in connection with money allegedly stolen from a guardianship trust account of a handicapped adult man.
Betty Pitts-Cartwright, 62, of Afton and Donna Ann Cupp, 60, of Sallisaw, are listed as defendants in a civil suit in Delaware County District Court in Jay filed on May 6. They are accused of stealing $129,502.07 from the guardianship estate of Dennis Alan Brown Jr.
The lawsuit was filed by Dennis Allen Brown Sr.The seven-page petition states between June 4, 2010 and April 2, 2013, checks totaling $108,802.79 and endorsed by Cartwright’s signature were withdrawn from the guardianship bank account and deposited in the Cornerstone Bank, which is located in Southwest City, Mo.
Also between June 4, 2010 and April 2, 2013, checks totaling $20,699.28 bearing no endorsement were withdrawn from the guardianship bank account and deposited into Cartwright’s trust account in her name, the petition states. The funds were deposited in Cartwright’s personal bank account, her lawyers trust account or in a joint account with Cupp, the petition states.
Cartwright is accused of failing to prevent Cupp from stealing money from guardianship funds, the petition states.
After the previous guardian, Angela Coles, died in 2013, Dennis Brown Sr. was appointed over the estate.Brown ordered the bank records to be examined which revealed Cartwright and Cupps used, diverted and took possession of the guardianship funds, the petition states. An Adair County District Court order on Sept. 27, 2013 gave permission for Brown to retain counsel and initiate proceedings.
In the criminal case filed in Associate Circuit Court of McDonald County in Missouri Cupp told authorities the account was set up at the Missouri bank because Cartwright said, “so people in Jay would not know her business,” according to an arrest affidavit.
The majority of the withdrawals on the account were made as automated teller machine transactions for cash, and nearly all of them were made at casinos, the affidavit states.
Cupp, a former school superintendent, pleaded no contest in 2004 to multiple counts of embezzlement in Sequoyah County and received a 5-year suspended sentence, court records show.
She stole $157,000 from Central School and used money from the school’s general fund to purchase items to furnish her new home, including marble and tile, artwork, a hot tub, and yard equipment, court records show.
This is the second civil lawsuit files against Cartwright. In June 2013 AET Enterprises, LLC filed a civil suit against AET Enterprise, LLC, Betty Pitts-Cartwright and her daughter Julie A. Pitts.
The mother and daughter are accused preparing a phony land deed and a bogus Oklahoma corporation to obtain ownership of a 5,500 square-foot waterfront residence that sits along an 18-hole golf course and has four bedrooms and 4.5 bathrooms. The residence was the home of Cartwright’s former boyfriend, Tor Staubo.
Staubo is a professional boat racer from Norway and paid $1.2 million in cash for a luxury Grand Lake residence then spent another $250,000 to furnish the residence.
A preliminary hearing for Cartwright in the Missouri case is set for May 27, court records show.
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Civil suit filed against Grand Lake attorney already facing criminal charges