Teacher Accused of Gambling Away Homecoming Fund: $90K on Penny Slots

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MACOMB, Mich. – A high school teacher has been accused of gambling away thousands of dollars from a school fund designated for the annual homecoming dance.

Lydia Johnson, 29, who taught at Macomb’s Dakota High School, was entrusted with the funds collected from school events. 

Authorities said Johnson’s gambling addiction prevented her from effectively financing her pupils’ endeavors.  Much of the funds were squandered away playing slot machines at the MGM Grand Casino in Detroit.

In a press release, Macomb County prosecutor Eric Smith said investigators found receipts from the casino next to empty envelopes that should have contained thousands of dollars from homecoming ticket sales, which totaled nearly $30,000.

The teacher eventually came under scrutiny when she reportedly paid a camp only $500 for a school trip that cost thousands. When camp staff called the district about the discrepancy, officials began an internal investigation.

Johnson was already placed on administrative last May when officials first opened the investigation.

She was found to have gambled $90,000 on the penny slots.

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