KAIT reports here that former Craighead County Clerk Kade Holliday has agreed to settle a lawsuit with the county by agreeing he will pay the county almost $1.5 million in repayment of stolen money, interest and attorney fees.
An element missing from this report: It’s unlikely Holliday, who resigned after being charged earlier this year with theft of public money, has anywhere near $1.5 million to pay that debt. He also faces other legal action and debts, including a lawsuit by a construction company unpaid $435,000 for a restaurant it built in Nashville for a company in which Holliday was a part-owner. Holliday is also accused of taking money from that company’s accounts.
In previous court proceedings, Holliday’s attorneys have discussed five rent houses, ownership of a Jonesboro coffee shop and some personal property, including various collectibles, as having potential value. He’s also made contributions to Arkansas State University from the money he stole and it’s possible that $60,000 or so could be returned by ASU.
Altogether, the assets are expected to fall well short of $1.5 million. The county was insured but the extent of that coverage isn’t currently known. Any payment would offset promised payments to the county, but Holliday’s obligation would shift to the insurance provider.
Holliday faces criminal charges for tapping county funds for personal expenditures. It has put the county in a severe financial bind because he drew on payroll taxes owed the state and federal governments. Those amounts must be paid, with interest, creating a burden on the county revenue stream.
Holliday appears to be trying to be as cooperative as possible in the face of difficult circumstances. His lawyer, Dustin McDaniel, told KAIT:
In our continued efforts to cooperate with the civil and criminal inquires, the appropriate decision was not to waste the resources of the County or Mr. Holliday on litigation. The Consent Judgment resolves the civil claims brought by the County against Mr. Holliday and allows us to focus on the next legal steps in this matter.
I obtained from the county a list of personal property assets Holliday’s attorneys had identified. They totaled more than $135,000 but County Judge Marvin Day commented that the figures seemed high, with items listed at retail for example.
The items include a collection of Pappy Van Winkle bourbon valued at $10,000. That will be an item of interest to tipplers, but it’s not exactly clear how it will be handled. The county can’t auction alcohol.
I notice three Bach trombones valued at $2,000 each. Maybe now’s my chance for an upgrade from my pedestrian King horn.
Other goods include Klipsch stereo gear, a Brunswick pool table, Lego sets, almost 20 pounds of silver bullion, a Mini Cooper, Chevy Tahoe and Cadillac Escalade, kitchen and grill equipment, clothing and Red Wolves collectibles.