Former D.C. Government Employee Pleads Guilty to Accepting Bribes in Scheme Involving Permits
Defendant Worked for D.C. Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs
WASHINGTON – Stacie M. Williams, .a former employee of the District of Columbia Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (DCRA), pled guilty today to a federal bribery charge stemming from a scheme in which she accepted cash in return for facilitating the issuance of construction permits.
The guilty plea was announced by U.S. Attorney Channing D. Phillips, Andrew Vale, Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI’s Washington Field Office, and Daniel W. Lucas, Inspector General for the District of Columbia.
Williams, 47, of Washington, D.C., pled guilty in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia to a charge of receipt of a bribe by a public official. The charge carries a statutory maximum of 15 years in prison and potential financial penalties. Under federal sentencing guidelines, Williams faces a likely range of 12 to 18 months in prison and possible financial penalties. She is to be sentenced on Oct. 19, 2017, by the Honorable Amit P. Mehta.
According to the government’s evidence, Williams worked from March 2004 until August 2016 as a contact representative in DCRA’s Business License Department. She was responsible for reviewing and processing applications for various permits. In two meetings at her workstation in April and June of 2012, Williams accepted a total of $700 in cash from a person who was actually participating in an undercover FBI investigation. In exchange for this money, Williams issued two air conditioning permits and one construction permit. In processing these permits, she did not require the person to take a number and wait in line at DCRA, which is the practice for all customers. She also falsified the requirement calling for the signature of a certified licensed tradesman who would oversee the construction. Instead, she inserted the name of a master licensed tradesman who she knew was not involved in the construction work.
In her plea today, Williams admitted that she often partnered with a co-worker, Lucretia B. Barksdale, in the illegal scheme of issuing DCRA permits to customers. Barksdale, 52, of Oxon Hill, Md. pled guilty to a federal bribery charge in March 2016 and later was sentenced to three years of probation, including 180 days that was to be spent in home detention.
In announcing the plea, U.S. Attorney Phillips, Assistant Director in Charge Vale, and Inspector General Lucas commended the work of those who investigated the case from the FBI’s Washington Field Office and the District of Columbia Office of the Inspector General. They also expressed appreciation for the efforts of those who worked on the case from the U.S. Attorney’s Office, including Paralegal Specialist Christopher Toms and former Assistant U.S. Attorneys Lionel André. Finally, they commended the work of Assistant U.S. Attorney Michelle N. Bradford, who is prosecuting the case.