University of Maryland (UMD)

Former Employee Accused of Defrauding UMD of $1M

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A former University of Maryland employee was indicted Tuesday on theft charges related to an alleged scheme that defrauded the university of more than $1 million. 

Lisa Schuetz worked at Maryland from 2001 until 2020 according to the university.

“The University of Maryland police conducted an investigation over several years and uncovered evidence that from 2016 to 2020 Schuetz abused her official position and purchasing authority,” Prince George’s County State’s Attorney Aisha Braveboy said.

The state's attorney would not confirm what Schuetz allegedly stole nor how her alleged scheme worked.

“At this point we can't get into, I think, the specifics, the specific facts of the case. ‘That will be borne out at trial should we get to that point,” Assistant State’s Attorney Nicholas Leonardi said.

While the University of Maryland would not confirm what Schuetz did there, a 2011 newsletter from the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering identified her as a director of administrative services. 

A 2012 article on the university's website announced Schuetz was promoted to the new director of operations for the mechanical engineering staff. It went on to say she was a 2007 graduate of UMD. The article was promptly taken down after News4 asked for confirmation of the details.

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Schuetz worked at the university's Clark School of Engineering while current UMD President Darryll Pines was dean of the school. The state's attorney’s office said there's no evidence to suggest anyone else at the university was involved in the alleged scheme. 

According to court records, Schuetz, who has kids, filed for divorce in 2015. The alleged scheme began the following year, according to the state's attorney.

“I wanted to send a very strong message today that economic crimes are serious, they have serious consequences, our office takes them seriously, and we will pursue them zealously,” Braveboy said.

Schuetz is not under arrest, she will receive a summons to appear in court.  Her arraignment is scheduled for March 25. If convicted she could face up to 20 years in prison and a fine up to $25,000.  

News4 tried reaching Schuetz for comment but was unsuccessful. She does not have an attorney listed in court records. 

A Johns Hopkins University spokesperson confirms that Schuetz is currently employed as a grant and contracts analyst there.

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