• Former CMS teacher accused of embezzlement

    By: Joe Bruno

    Updated:

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Parents at Garinger High School were shocked to find out this week that a former teacher is facing embezzlement charges.

    Warrants show Tashara McNair, of Statesville, was arrested in April. McNair was employed as a choral music teacher at Garinger High School from January 2015 to March 2016.

    McNair claimed to be the president of the Garinger High School Band Boosters, according to court documents. Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools officials said the group doesn't exist. Court documents claim McNair took over $9,000 for personal use between July 2015 and January 2016.

    "I was just shocked at the fact someone would be that dishonest and work for the school," a band parent who didn't want to be identified said.
     
    Parents told Channel 9 they found out about the embezzlement charges on Monday at a meeting.
     
    One parent at the meeting said several left in disgust after they found out about the thousands of missing donations.
     
    Garinger High School is a Title 1 school, meaning many students are on free or reduced lunches. Parents said they have already donated hundreds of dollars to the program which desperately needs funding.
     
    "I want them to be proud of where they go to school at," the parent said. "Garinger is struggling they need some help."
     
    No one was at McNair's home when Channel 9 visited Wednesday.
     
    Channel 9 also discovered a website for the band advertising the booster club. A spokesperson for CMS said it isn't authorized. It also appears the website hasn't been updated recently.
     
    "Garinger school leadership has taken this case seriously since it was brought to our attention last year," CMS spokesperson Renee McCoy said. "Administrators worked with law enforcement throughout the investigation to ensure appropriate action was taken. It is up to the judicial system to determine any restitution."
     
    Parents are hoping to start a GoFundMe account for the school. According to one parent with a child in the band, the students desperately need new uniforms, instruments and equipment.
     
    A spokesperson for CMS said parents have to wait until after the legal proceedings are complete to see if there will be any restitution payments. A spokesperson added parents can take civil action against McNair.
     
    McNair is charged with embezzlement and obtaining property by false pretense. She is due in court in September.

    The Garinger High School Education Foundation is planning a fundraiser for the high school band.

    The class of 2001 is hosting an alumni charity kickball tournament on Oct. 15 to help raise funds for the school, specifically the band.

    Teams will cost $200 with 15 people total.

    People can join or create a team by emailing Janell.Lewis@gmail.com or by calling 704-651-3987.

    The Garinger High School Education Foundation has raised more than $140,000 in three years for student scholarships and programs at the school.

    The location and time has not yet been determined. 

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