November 28, 2014

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Former head of LCCAA wants record sealed

Anna Taylor Carter listens to her attorney Lynn Loritts during a 2004 hearing.

Anna Taylor Carter listens to her attorney Lynn Loritts during a 2004 hearing. CHRONICLE FILE PHOTO

ELYRIA — Former Lorain County Community Action Agency President Anna Taylor-Carter is seeking to seal the record of her conviction on charges she stole from the poverty-fighting agency and then covered it up.

Taylor-Carter, 54, was convicted in March 2004 of falsification, tampering with evidence, theft and theft in office. She was sentenced to probation and ordered to repay the agency $5,681. She was released from probation in 2006.

In her application to have her case file sealed from public view, filed without the help of an attorney, Taylor-Carter wrote that she hasn’t gotten into legal trouble since her conviction.

Taylor-Carter, who listed a Columbus address on the form, also wrote that she has worked in the ministry, volunteered with non-profit groups, mentored young adults and served as a tutor.

“Having paid her debt to society, defendant would like to close this chapter of her life and move on to pursue employment (opportunities) for which she is skilled and qualified,” the application said.

A jury concluded that Taylor-Carter had used an agency credit card to buy $86 worth of make-up at a Columbus department store as well as for $900 worth of meals on business trips for which she had already been paid for expenses.

She also created a bogus contract to cover up the actual costs of services provided by Red Ball Catering, a catering service operated by LCCAA, for her November 2001 wedding. The jury cleared her of seven other charges she had faced.

Taylor-Carter could not be reached for comment Friday, but during a June 2004 sentencing hearing, she apologized for her actions.

“It seems that saying I’m sorry or saying I’m remorseful does not really capture, do not really express what I’ve gone through,” she told Visiting Judge Judith Cross.

Her attorney at the time said during the same hearing that Taylor-Carter was having trouble finding work because of the publicity surrounding the case.

Taylor’s tenure with LCCAA was fraught with controversy, including her firing of a maintenance worker for talking to a reporter about setting up a church service at one of the agency’s facilities while he was on the clock. The worker was later reinstated by a mediator.

She also faced allegations she used agency funds to pay for a plane ticket to Florida for her husband, although that bill was paid the same day The Chronicle-Telegram published a story about the matter.

The Chronicle-Telegram also sued the agency after LCCAA refused to turn over public records requested by the newspaper.

Even after Taylor-Carter was first indicted in December 2002, she continued to work for the agency until she was fired in January 2003. The next month, a portion of the board rehired her, which led another faction of board members to sue the agency. She was finally fired by a vote of 14-0 in March 2003.

Later that year a consultant to the agency insisted that the entire board resign because of the rift over Taylor-Carter.

Contact Brad Dicken at 329-7147 or bdicken@chroniclet.com.


  • GreatRedeemer

    Vince got an expungement, why shouldn’t just another
    convicted former Lorain county government employee get one.
    By all means give her a chance.

  • Joe Sandor

    She’s a convicted crook. Sure, she served her sentence. But, the conviction needs to remain on-file. Why should she get her records sealed? So she can go back to government work (“for which she is qualified”) and steal again?

  • oldruss

    Taylor-Carter stole from the little children in Head Start, and the other clients of the LCCAA. No reason for this felon to be allowed to hide behind a sealed criminal record.

  • joy

    Where is she getting the money for this!cuz it not cheap.she should keep on her record. She probably do it again

  • rlm_Lorain

    I bet ANYONE with a conviction of any sort would like their record sealed once they have completed their sentence. It doesn’t work that way. Doing so would just defeat the entire purpose of a “background check”, now wouldn’t it? What’s next, sealing the records of sexual predators? If you don’t want something ugly showing up during an employment check, don’t commit the crime in the first place. I think she has a lot of nerve to ask that her record be sealed.

  • Bonnie Pickett

    Why shouldn’t prospective employers know about her conviction? She stole from the taxpayers and thought she could get away with it. I don’t feel sorry for her – she should get no special treatment because she hasn’t done it again. Many have made mistakes that landed them in jail and face an uncertain job future because of it. I’m tired of public officials who steal from me (a taxpayer) getting a slap on the wrist and “get forgiven” for the crimes.