Park Center Basketball Booster Club Swindled Out of $20K
The girls basketball booster club at Park Center High school says someone stole upwards of $20,000 from its account. The person who allegedly embezzled the funds used the account like it was their own.
Electric bills, casino visits and fast food were just a few of the many things the individual in question charged to the account.
It makes it really tough for you to trust people” – former booster club president
“It makes it really tough for you to trust people,” says Tony Ragulen, former president of the Park Center girls basketball booster club.
“We have certain policies and procedures in place to prevent certain actions from taking place. You trust people to follow those and then when they don’t that trust is broken. It makes it really hard for parents and future boosters to want to buy in to what you are trying to accomplish. It’s embarrassing and expensive lesson to learn.”
Never Had Anything Like This Happen
The booster club has been around since the 1990s and they have never had anything like this happen in the past. The team uses the booster club money for the concession stand, basketball camp costs and uniforms. Now the team is behind schedule on uniform purchases.
“At this time we would probably have samples in already,” added Ragulen. “You have to put a down payment on those to get them. So right now we are kind of behind in that regard. We are going to be pushing it really close to see if we are able to get enough money to get the ball rolling with that. There’s a chance we could make the deadline but there’s a chance we may not as well.”
Those involved with the team say the person in question had a child on the team and was very involved. That person has not been charged and Brooklyn Park police continue to investigate.
The team has set up a GoFundMe page to try and raise the money they need for the season.