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Former Benton Harbor superintendent charged with misappropriating funds

April 13, 2017
Leonard Seawood, who led the district from 2010 to 2015, is charged with wrongfully collecting cash for unused vacation days.

The former superintendent of the Benton Harbor (Mich.) Area district has been charged with misappropriating school district funds by wrongfully collecting cash for unused vacation days.

Berrien County Prosecutor Michael Sepic says that Leonard Seawood, 56, who was superintendent of schools from 2010 to 2015, was permitted a cash payout for a maximum of five unused vacation days a year.

But Seawood allegedly exceeded the maximum for several years by receiving payments to which he was not entitled: in 2012, 45 extra days; in 2013, 16 extra days; in 2014, 9 extra days; and in 2015, 5 extra days.

Sepic says the extra vacation cash payouts amounted to about $45,000.00.

Seawood is charged with one count of embezzlement and an alternative count of obtaining money by false pretenses.

Following an investigation, he was suspended by the school board on April 30, 2015, and he resigned on Oct. 13, 2015.

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