UPDATE: Former Williamson Mayor Sentenced in Federal Case

By: WSAZ News Staff, The Associated Press Email
By: WSAZ News Staff, The Associated Press Email

Mayor Resignation Letter

Darrin McCormick Information

UPDATE 10/17/14
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - Former Williamson Mayor Darrin McCormick has been sentenced to three years of probation and fined $5,000 after pleading guilty to lying to federal authorities.

The U.S. attorney's office announced McCormick's sentencing on Thursday. McCormick had previously pleaded guilty in federal court in Charleston.

McCormick was charged in April with lying to the FBI and the IRS about suspicious banking activity by Aracoma Contracting LLC. McCormick formerly managed the Bank of Mingo's Williamson branch.

Aracoma pleaded guilty last November to conspiracy to structure currency transactions. Prosecutors say the company structured cash withdrawals to avoid federal reporting requirements.

Prosecutors say Aracoma used the cash to meet payroll, avoid paying employment taxes and bribe a former workers' compensation auditor.

Aracoma was ordered to pay more than $4 million in restitution.



UPDATE 5/15/14 @ 5 p.m.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- The former mayor of Williamson, West Virginia pleaded guilty to federal charges Thursday.

Darrin McCormick admitted to lying to the FBI and IRS during an investigation into suspicious banking activity conducted by a company called Aracoma Contracting and the Bank of Mingo.

McCormick will be sentenced in August.

Right now, McCormick is out of jail on bond. The judge also permitted him to cross state lines into eastern Kentucky.

McCormick resigned from his position as mayor the same day a federal information charging him with lying to investigators was handed down.

Keep clicking on WSAZ.com for the latest on this story.

UPDATE 5/13/14
WILLIAMSON, W.Va. (WSAZ) – A plea hearing has been set for the former Mayor of Williamson who is charged with lying to federal investigators.

The hearing for Darrin McCormick is set for Thursday in U.S. District Court in Charleston.

Last month, McCormick was charged in a federal information.

According to court documents, the FBI and IRS were conducting an investigation into suspicious banking activity by a local contracting company.

McCormick is accused of making false statements to investigators looking into the case.

The information came down the same day that McCormick sent in his letter of resignation as the mayor. His last day as mayor was April 30



UPDATE 4/17/14 @ 2:25 p.m.
WILLIAMSON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- The Mayor of Williamson is expected to admit to lying to federal investigators.

Thursday, federal prosecutors asked a judge to set a plea hearing in the case against Darrin McCormick.

Earlier this week, McCormick was charged in a federal information. According to court documents, the FBI and IRS were conducting an investigation into suspicious banking activity by a local contracting company.

McCormick is accused of making false statements to investigators looking into the case.

The information came down the same day that McCormick sent in his letter of resignation. His last day as mayor is April 30th.



UPDATE 4/15/14 @ 4 p.m.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- US Attorney Booth Goodwin says Williamson Mayor Darrin McCormick has been charged with a federal information.

The charge comes down the same day that McCormick, 50, submitted his letter of resignation.

Goodwin says that McCormick is charged with lying to the FBI during an investigation into workers' compensation.

McCormick is being charged with one count of giving a false statement.

According to the information, on February 19, 2013, McCormick made a fraudulent statement regarding suspicious banking activity conducted by a contracting company that operates in Mingo County.

“Federal investigations are serious matters,” said U.S. Attorney Goodwin, “and providing false information to federal investigators is a serious crime. When people try to lead investigators astray with false statements, justice suffers, and that hurts all of us.”

No other information about the case is being released at this time.

In his resignation letter, McCormick said he will step down April 30th.

He did not give a reason for his resignation in the letter, but did say, "It is my hope that by taking this action at this time that the city council members, staff and various boards of the city will continue to positive momentum of the many exciting projects and opportunities that are just on the horizon for our community."

Steven Johnston Knopp, an attorney and municipal judge, has been selected by Williamson City Council to take over for McCormick.

Councilman Matthew Thornsbury, son of former Judge Michael Thornsbury, also submitted his letter of resignation Tuesday.

According to a source familiar with the investigation, Matthew Thornsbury has not been charged.

Judy Hamrick, a member of the Williamson Housing Authority, has been selected as Matthew Thornsbury's replacement.

Keep clicking on WSAZ.com for the latest on this story.



ORIGINAL STORY 4/15/14 @ 9:45 a.m.
WILLIAMSON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- Williamson Mayor Darrin McCormick has submitted a letter of resignation.

According the letter, McCormick will step down on April 30th.

WSAZ.com has obtained a copy of his resignation letter. McCormick does not give a reason for his resignation in the letter.

In the letter McCormick does say, " It is my hope that by taking this action at this time that the city council members, staff and various boards of the city will continue to positive momentum of the many exciting projects and opportunities that are just on the horizon for our community."

Steven Johnston Knopp has been selected by Williamson City Council to take over for McCormick.

Knopp is an attorney and municipal judge for the city of Williamson.

Council Member Matthew Thornsbury has also submitted his letter of resignation, which is also effective April 30th.

Thornsbury is the son of former Circuit Court Judge Michael Thornsbury. Judge Thornsbury is currently awaiting sentencing in connection with a corruption case.

Judy Hamrick has been selected as Matthew Thornsbury's replacement. She is currently a member on the Williamson Housing Authority.

Keep clicking on WSAZ.com for the latest information.


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