Thursday, February 06, 2014

Ten Point Coalition Activist's Home Raided By Federal, State And Local Investigators, Asked About $3 Million Offer From Republican

The Ten Point Coalition's street outreach coordinator Byron Alston tells Fox59 News' Russ McQuaid that federal, state and local law enforcement officers came knocking at his door Tuesday morning with a search warrant. Alston claims investigators asked him if he had been offered $3 million by a Republican.
Alston said investigators seized his computer and financial records of the “Save the Youth” organization dating back to 2007 in an apparent search for his funding sources. He was told his computer would be returned once investigators downloaded its information.
Alston and other sources confirm investigators raised the figure of $3 million during their raid and asked the activist, “Did a republican offer you a large sum of money?”
Alston said he was also asked whether the coalition had ever been the target of an extortion attempt.
During a funeral last month, Alston told Fox 59 News that he was approached by an unknown person who asked him about $3 million that his organization supposedly received and his rebuff of another ministerial group that requested half the funds.
Alston said investigators thumped his walls in what he perceived as an attempt to find false walls or possibly money stashed in the structure.
Rev. Charles Harrison of the Ten Point Coalition supplied Fox 59 News with documentation confirming that Alston is a Street Outreach Coordinator paid a salary of $961.53 every two weeks.
Harrison also provided financial documents confirming the Coalition has received $811,808 in funding from various public, private and charitable entities since 2008.
$343,000 of that funding came from Mayor Ballard’s Crime Prevention Grants.
$300,000 came from Public Safety funding., including $50,000 in 2012 when Ten Point was shut out of Crime Prevention Grant money and received funding only after a scrambled search for sources by the mayor and then-Public safety Director Frank Straub which did not come to fruition until a week before the annual Indiana Black Expo Summer Celebration when faith-based street workers walked downtown in an effort to bring peace to the event.
This isn't the first time Alston has been in the news. Alston pleaded guilty to criminal confinement charges for allegations of sexual misconduct towards women who applied for jobs funded, in part, from crime prevention grant money provided to his organization by the Ballard administration. Questions arose about Alston violating the terms of his probation in 2010 when he showed up at a meeting of concerned clergy attended by Mayor Greg Ballard at a time he was supposed to still be on home detention from his guilty plea. IMPD Chief Rick Hite came under fire in 2012 when it was disclosed that he had written a letter of support for Alston to a Marion County judge for his probation hearing. Typically, police officers are disciplined if they intervene in probation cases on behalf of offenders. "We’ve got a victim of a sexual crime who is dependent on the city to protect and prosecute," FOP President Bill Owensby told the Indianapolis Star. "Now the city is defending and essentially coming out in support of a criminal suspect. The community has let down the victim."

A spokesman for Mayor Greg Ballard implied to McQuaid that the questioning of Alston about a Republican's role in providing money to his organization suggested a political motive by Marion County Prosecutor Terry Curry:
“As Mayor Ballard has often said,” reads Lotter’s statement, “the Ten Point Coalition is an invaluable partner in helping to protect our community and reduce violence. They work side-by-side with the men and women of IMPD as partners.
“Stories about investigators asking questions about the generic term ‘Republicans’ are very disturbing. Hopefully Prosecutor Curry’s office can elaborate on the rationale for this seemingly politically motivated line of questioning to dispel rumors that this is just politics as usual. We’ve seen that kind of action too many times at the federal level and don’t need that occurring here locally.”

Controversial radio talk show host Abdul-Hakim Shabazz, a close ally of the Ballard administration, asked if the investigation was a Democratic witch hunt in a comment he posted on his Twitter account. "Are Indy Democrats on a witch hunt?" Shabazz asked, providing a link to McQuaid's story.


Anonymous said...

Is there way to account for the $343K of city money, or did Bart and Frank attach ZERO terms&conditions to their danegeld?

Gary R. Welsh said...

The $343K grant was made during Ballard's term, not Peterson's.

Anonymous said...

A slip on my part,sir. I meant to type Ben rather than Bart. My question still stands.

Anonymous said...

Follow the money with all events and legislative menu's and more...House of Cards...TurnER every stone on MainStreet and more...Who's reporting this..Oh yes ...they are...

Anonymous said...

343k Sure would build a nice jail

Anonymous said...

You can find Rev. Alston at the strip club dehumanizing & degrading women.