Former State House Candidate Melissa Howard to Sign Deferred Prosecution Agreement

  • 0

MANATEE COUNTY, FL (WWSB) - Former state House candidate Melissa Howard is now facing serious consequences for her fake degree from Miami University, Ohio.

Ed Brodsky, a State Attorney for the Twelfth Judicial District, tells ABC7 Howard is expected to admit guilt and sign a deferred prosecution agreement Friday morning for 'intention to deceive.' Brodsky says she'll be put on probation, be required to work community service, and pay a fine.

The Lakewood Ranch resident lied about having a degree from Miami University of Ohio while running for the District 73 State House seat this year.

"A deferred prosecution agreement is available for first time offenders," said Brodsky. "Miss Howard has no prior criminal history, which makes her eligible for this program."

Howard will be put on a period of supervision where she will be required to perform 25 hours of public service and pay certain costs as well as remain crime free and not violate the law. If she doesn't abide by all those stipulations then she would face a First Degree Misdemeanor for Misrepresentation of Academic Standing at a Post Secondary Educational Institution.

The Manatee County Sheriff's Office concluded Howard  "intended to defraud when she touted a fake diploma from Miami University of Ohio."

"We agree with their findings and that's why we're moving forward with our charges. We're moving forward with our case and that's why she's being offered this agreement," said Brodsky.

Howard ended up dropping out of the race. We did call and text her for a comment, but we never heard back from her. She's expected to appear at the Manatee County Probation offices Friday morning at 9:30.

Copyright 2018 WWSB. All rights reserved.